In Pakistan, music is not given as much credit as it deserves – especially as part of the academic process. When considering the number of expert opinions that say that learning music has a myriad of benefits, it makes one wonder why this is not a regular feature in our schools.
Here are some of the ways music lessons help to develop your child:
1. It boosts confidence
The first lessons are undoubtedly difficult, where a child has to understand the concept of musical notes and holding an instrument in awkward positions. This could be frustrating, but as the child becomes more comfortable, they will also become more confident in their ability to overcome and excel at challenging tasks.
2. Music fosters academic ability
Albert Einstein was a mathematician as well as a skilled musician/violinist. It is not necessary that the two are always connected, but many say that Einstein’s brilliance in math/physics was due to his ability to maneuver between the two spheres in his brain and connect logic with creativity. Beats, rhythms, scales, etc. are all important in music and work on mathematical and scientific abilities. For example: recognizing patterns and experiencing and understanding vibration and ripples.
3. Develops social skills
Music is beneficial for children who are struggling with social inclusion. By playing music in groups, children learn to pace themselves and understand the concept of working in a team and trusting team members.
4. Develops physical skills
Not only are children increasing their mental capacity, but by introducing their hands and bodies to various ways of holding and playing instruments, they work on physical skills such as ambidexterity. The coordination that is learnt in music, can go on to be beneficial in other physical activities such as sports and dance.
5. Develops discipline and patience
To learn any skill requires discipline and patience. Music is no different. It takes anywhere between months and years of practice to perfect any instrument. This requires discipline and lots of hard work. To ensure that your child does not get disheartened, set short-term goals that can be celebrated as they move forward in their learning journey.
6. Improves memory
Short and long-term memory are both strengthened as child recalls musical notes and lyrics to songs. It also encourages the use mnemonic devices to help with memory skills.
7. Encourages creativity
To be able to play expressively and to go on to create music that is entirely their own creation, can do wonders not only for their creative self but also for confidence, stress relief and overcoming adversity.
The benefits of music go far beyond this list but perhaps this is enough to convince you to include music learning in your child’s routine. If you think that instruments do not excite your child, you can include music in other ways: choir and dance are excellent options.