If your child loves music, you already understand some of the benefits that come along with learning to play an instrument. Learning music is a hobby that entertains your child and fills him with pride when he accomplishes a new goal. Child musicians gain confidence, build friendships, and find personal satisfaction in a job well done. You might be surprised to learn that your child musician isn’t only gaining immediate benefits from an instrumental hobby. She’s also more likely to become a successful adult.
Sadly, it’s common to hear that many schools are being forced to phase out musical programs that kids love due to budget issues. The assumption seems to be that children benefit more from academic courses. Of course, it makes sense that science or math could be more likely to lead to a career than musical studies. However, practicing music builds other habits that help children become more successful adults.
5 Reasons Child Musicians Become Successful Adults
Learning to play an instrument can be a great source of entertainment for your child. Lessons are often easy to find, and children learn quickly and build pride in their accomplishments. Playing an instrument during childhood can also build habits that lead to successful adulthood behavior.
1. Learning an Instrument Builds Concentration.
Children who learn to play an instrument tend to become better students in other subjects as well. Learning music requires a high level of concentration. Children who are interested in music learn these skills for the desire to succeed musically. They also use the techniques they’ve learned in other studies leading to higher academic success as well.
Playing an instrument requires a lot of work from your memory. From the technical details like finger placement to understanding sheet music, your memory is front and center throughout the entire process. When your child uses her memory in this fashion, it’s like flexing a muscle that will be useful for other activities. As her memory grows stronger to remember the technicalities of music, the study process for other subjects becomes easier as well.
2. Child Musicians Have Higher IQ Scores.
Practicing music has been shown to increase IQ scores in groups of children as compared to those who don’t play an instrument. While the cause isn’t clear, some researchers believe that learning to play an instrument directly increases intelligence. Others recognize the increases in IQ of child musicians over time and suggest that it is simply the brain’s response to the experience of learning something new. No matter what the reason, the difference shows in the scores. If your child enjoys learning to play an instrument, increased IQ is a benefit that could come along with the process.
3. Music Lessons Teach the Value of Practice.
Practice makes perfect is a phrase commonly quoted to children. Perfection is a stretch and shouldn’t be what anyone is striving to reach, but practice is a value that will translate to many successes throughout your child’s lifetime. There are very few lessons that illustrate the value of practice as plainly as playing an instrument. While every musician knows there is always room for improvement, practice is the number one way to accomplish your musical goals.
Every music student with no experience begins in the same place. With consistent practice, a younger student can easily surpass an older student playing the same instrument. As your child practices with his new instrument, he will see improvement from week to week and month to month. Record early practices to surprise him with the evidence of how much he’s improved over the course of one year.
4. Playing an Instrument Builds Confidence.
If your child is a musician, you can probably tell a big difference in her confidence level as her abilities improve. The process of learning an instrument involves playing in front of a music teacher, class, and eventually an audience. Building these skills helps your child manage stress and build confidence to believe she can accomplish what her audience expects. Often, young musicians begin the road to improving instrumental skills by comparing themselves to others. As practice continues, the gauge of success becomes seeing improvement from your personal best. Additionally, interacting with a music group and learning to play in front of an audience can help children overcome shyness and become more social.
5. Musical Training Can Improve Math and Language Skills.
Learning the elements of beat, rhythm, and scales directly relates to the functions of mathematics. As these techniques are learned, your child is using division, creating fractions, and learning patterns. When these functions become a part of long-term memory, math skills improve naturally. Essentially, your child uses the same functions in the brain to break down musical composition and to work our problems in arithmetic. So, in a way, learning music better prepares the brain for math.
Since music helps improve memory skills, there is a marked improvement in language testing as well. In fact, children who play an instrument score 15% higher on verbal language tests than those who don’t play. The reasons for this are likely two-fold. Learning to read sheet music is like learning the language of music, while playing an instrument requires the memory to work harder. This improved academic achievement is enhanced by the opportunity to start playing at an early age.
If your child is interested in learning to play an instrument, there’s so much to gain and nothing to lose. A child who learns to play an instrument has a consistent means of entertainment, is always learning something new, and often experiences less stress than his peers. Seeing your child find joy and confidence while learning a new skill is an amazing experience. Now the long-term benefits of becoming a musician at an early age are being revealed as well.
No matter where you are in your musical journey, there’s always more to learn. For more great musician’s tips and information about various instruments, visit our blog.
To learn more about the value of private music instruction, contact us at Grace Music School today.
Providing exceptional music education for all ages is one way to help build the musicians of tomorrow.