Do you ever spend time thinking about how you could game the system and give your child a leg up? Or how you could get your child to be Picasso, Stephen Hawking, Bill Gates and Oprah (or any other influential person) all rolled into one person?
Music lessons are your answer.
Long have the effects of music on our brains been examined, and it is clear from years of scientific studies that music has a profound effect on the human brain.
At the tip of the iceberg, musicians tend to be more mentally alert. Why is this? Because musicians have faster visual, auditory, tactile and audio-tactile reaction times. This is because musicians are better at integrating all the different sensory inputs they are receiving into one message and direction for action.
Have you ever wondered why many great doctors, inventors, scientists and leaders are also musicians? Because taking music lessons changed the way their brain worked by rewiring it, and continuing to play a musical instrument keeps their brain flexible.
When you listen to music, multiple parts of your brain are firing in reaction as your brain decodes melody, rhythm and everything else that makes up the music. When you play a musical instrument though, you engage pretty much the entire brain at once. Numerous parts of your brain, but specifically the visual, auditory and motor parts, are working to process completely different information in a split second. Regularly practicing a musical instrument strengthens those parts of the brain and allows us to apply those strengths to other activities like surgery, computer coding, writing, playing chess, cooking, etc. The possibilities are endless.
Because of the fine motor skills required to play a musical instrument, playing a musical instrument combines the left and right hemispheres. This combines the mathematical and linguistic abilities of the left side and the creative abilities of the right side.
With regular and consistent practice, the brain’s corpus callosum is stronger in musicians than in non-musicians. The corpus callosum is a bundle of nerves acting as a bridge between the two sides of the brain and it allows information to pass between the two sides of the bridge. The more practice you do, the quicker and more diverse the information routes become.
As the two sides of the brain become more integrated, the brain is able to make quicker executive decisions. Planning, strategizing and attention to detail are all tasks that fall into this category as well as quick analysis and problem solving from emotional and cognitive aspects.
As if this wasn’t enough, being able to do all of this also impacts how a musician’s memory systems work. Because of the careful and intricate ways the brain receives, decodes and processes information, musicians have advanced memory “filing systems”. Musicians are able to create, store and retrieve memories quickly and efficiently by tagging each memory with a conceptual tag, an emotional tag, and audio tag and a contextual tag. Just like a library filing system or an internet search engine.
When a child is given the opportunity to exercise their brain with music lessons, their long-term memory is much more efficient and effective than non-musicians and their brain develops with more plasticity and structure.
Studies have found that the earlier a child starts playing a musical instrument, the more plastic and flexible the brain is. This directly impacts their health and well being later in life, since starting their life with the firm foundation of giving their brain exercise can only benefit children as they grow older.
There is no better time than the present to start your child’s music lessons! Click here to register for a trial lesson. We look forward to meeting you and collaborating in your child’s musical journey!