Music is almost universal – most of us enjoy it, whether by playing an instrument, singing and dancing to it, or simply listening. However, many schools are having to reduce or end their music programs due to cutbacks in funding. Canceling music programs is a mistake because music is a subject that can enrich children’s lives and education.
Here are eight benefits of keeping music in our schools:
1. Music develops language and reasoning skills. Children with early musical training develop the areas of the brain related to these skills. Music helps to develop the left side of the brain, and songs can imprint information on the young mind.
2. Music helps students master memorization. Even using sheet or book music, student musicians are constantly relying upon their memory to play. Memory skills are valuable in education and beyond.
3. Students get practice at improving their work. Learning music is learning a craft, and students want to create successful work instead of mediocre work. This skill can be transferred to other subjects, too.
4. Music teaches pattern recognition, so students can develop their math and pattern-recognition skills.
5. Students with experience in music performance, or even an appreciation of music, score higher on the SAT. In fact, a study shows a 63-point increase in verbal and 44-point increase in math for music students.
6. Music fosters imagination and intellectual curiosity. Children who are introduced to music in the early childhood years develop a positive attitude toward learning.
7. Developing music skills teaches students discipline. Young musicians must learn to set aside time to practice and develop discipline and patience to master playing their instrument.
8. Students who study the arts learn to think creatively. Creative thinking skills help children to think outside the box and even realize there might be more than one right answer.