Benefits of Piano
The benefits of early childhood musical training are well-known and research continues to document the lifelong benefits of guiding your child into the world of music. Children who are introduced to musical education benefit across the whole spectrum of human development, including mental, emotional and physical abilities:
- Preschoolers given piano training scored a 36% increase in visual-spatial learning compared to other children.
- Students with musical training scored 51 points higher on the verbal SATS and 39 points higher on the math section than the national average. – From Change Your Brain, Change Your Life, by Daniel G. Amen, M.D.
- Six-year old given music instruction showed an increase in IQ, according to a recent study documented by PBS.
- Early musical training strengthens auditory processing skills that can last a lifetime, as reported by the New York Times.
- Adults who received music training before the age of 12 have a better memory for spoken words than those who did not, as documented by scientists at the University of Hong Kong.
- Students enrolled in formal music instruction did better in Algebra thatn those without music instruction, according to Barbara H. Helmrich of the College of Notre Dame of Maryland.
- Children who pursue progresively more difficult music training demonstrate superior reading skills over other students, according to researchers from Long Island University.
- Music instruction has been shown to have a positive effect on verbal skills in children in as little as 20 days according to a study by Sylvain Moreno, Rotman Research Institute.
- Musical instruction prior to the age of 7 can lead to greater lifelong brain plasticity, according to Christopher J. Steele of Concordia University.
- Neural changes due to childhood music instruction are retained in adulthood, according to Erika Skoe of the Auditory Neuroscience Laboratory.
- Young children who take music lessons show improved memory over the course of a year compared to children who do not receive musical training,as reported by Science Daily.
- Even older adults can achieve cognitive benefits from piano instruction that mitigate age-related impairment, according to J. A. Bugosa of East Carolina University.
Benefits of Violin and Viola
There is a mystique that surrounds the violin. It is one of the most well-known stringed instruments. Children often are attracted to how sophisticated it looks to play violin.
Physical Benefits of Learning Violin and Viola for Children
- A child learning the violin or viola reaps many benefits from it.
- Physically, your child gains strength and flexibility in the upper body.
- Due to developing the skills and muscle memory needed for playing, their arms and fingers get stronger as they learn exciting and new techniques.
- Your child’s posture generally improves, due to strengthening his back, shoulders, and upper arms.
- His/her back will get stronger, because of the need to sit up straight while playing. His shoulders and upper arms bear the extra weight of the instrument and its bow, as well as the weight of his own arms!
- His/Her little fingers will gain strength, as well, on both hands. The left hand’s fingers will gain nimbleness, also, because quick movements as it presses down the strings of the violin or viola.
- His/ her right hand will learn to control the bow and coordinate its movements with the left hand.
How your Child’s Mind Benefits from Learning Violin or Viola
- A study at the Institute for Music and the Mind at McMaster University in West Hamilton concluded that playing violin tends to improve children’s concentration. Essentially, when a youngster plays an instrument, changes tend to occur in your child’s mind and brain:
- Improved attention span and focus – Your child must focus on learning both the violin or viola itself and how to read music
- Sharpened memory – A student will need to memorize both physical movements to make music, as well as how to read music
- Improved self-discipline – To have the violin or viola sound right, your child will need to practice certain skills over and over The largest amount of changes brought about by musical training, that study also found, is between the ages of 10 and 13. However, children younger than 10 and older than 13 certainly reap similar benefits as well!
Learning music in general helps children with their general communication skills as well, another study concluded. Young musicians who have taken three or more years of musical training tend to show improvements in “verbal ability and visual pattern completion”.
And in yet another study, published in the Psychology of Music, the authors tracked two groups of children in second grade over the course of three years. One group was given regular lessons over the course of the three years, the other group was given no music lessons at all as a control for the study. At the end of the three years, a standard test was given to both groups to asses their “significantly better vocabulary and verbal sequencing scores than did the non-music-learning control group” knowledge. These scores showed an improvement in skills that are fundamental to children acquiring and improving their reading skills.
Benefits of Guitar (Coming Soon!)
Benefits of Ukulele (Coming Soon!)
Benefits of Voice (Coming Soon!)
To enroll your child in private piano, guitar, ukulele, violin, viola or voice lessons or for additional information, please contact:
Julie Zupan, Founder and Director
Old Town Music School
120 South Royal Street
Alexandria, Virginia 22314