Why Music? The NON-Musical Benefits

Have you (or your child) ever had a day where you wondered why you were still doing music lessons? Even professional musicians can have times when practicing is less exciting than others. If you find yourself stuck in one of those ruts, you might want to remind yourself of some of the benefits of music that go beyond just being able to read the notes on the page. We came across this article that was published a couple of years ago and just HAD to share it. In a nutshell, here are some of the things that music does for us, according to the article:

  • Language Development
    • Enhances a child’s natural ability to process sounds
    • Develops the left side of the brain (language processing)
    • Can help children remember new information by linking it to a song
    • Helps develop “verbal competence”
  • Increased IQ and Brain Activity
    • Correlates with a higher IQ after several months of study
    • Causes visible changes to the brain that indicate more of it is used by a musician than a non-musician
    • Builds networks in the brain associated with fine motor skills and sound analysis
  • Spatial-Temporal Skills
    • Helps students visualize how to solve various problems
    • Is especially helpful in areas such as math, architecture, engineering, visual art, and computers
  • Higher Test Scores
    • Aids concentration and memory, both of which are important in standardized testing
    • Improves test scores in multiple subjects regardless of socioeconomic status of the school or district

(For the full article and citations of empirical studies, click here.)

Isn’t music awesome?? These are only some of the great things that come from learning to play an instrument or sing. I especially love this quote from Boyd K. Packer: “We are able to feel and learn very quickly through music, through art, through poetry some spiritual things that we would otherwise learn very slowly.” So even on the tough days, keep moving forward—it will be worth it!