Many people consider music in the schools to be an extracurricular activity intended only for those who show an interest or talent for it. It’s enjoyable to students who are involved in it and the ability to create and perform beautiful music is certainly an admirable talent, but many see it as nothing more than a talent that is ultimately unimportant to one’s education. However, many others believe that there are far more benefits to music education that go beyond simply learning how to play an instrument. It may be especially worthwhile to include music lessons when homeschooling a child.
Studies have all but proven that music education carries with it many benefits, especially for young children. Children begin to develop rapidly once they reach school age, and just like learning a foreign language they will be able to make the most out of the effects of music and music education. It has been proven that students who focus on music education generally score higher in standardized tests such as the SATs and even have higher IQ scores in general.
Learning how to play an instrument or simply how to appreciate music can be beneficial to anyone, but there are certain areas in particular where music is especially effective for children. Some of the benefits of music include:
* Brain Development. Listening and learning music at an early age helps children develop areas of the brain that process reason and logic.
* Language. Music can be said to be a language in and of itself, so it stands to reason that music education can aid in the development of language skills. Singing can help very young children to learn to verbalize words, and music can help children become better and more attentive listeners.
* Motor skills. Playing musical instrument obviously requires fine motor skills and manual dexterity which can be developed through lessons.
In addition to these fairly obvious benefits of music education, children who study music also promote self-expression and cooperation when they play any music with other children.
When most people imagine music education, the images that come to mind may be of a school choir, orchestra, or marching band. Obviously, a child who is homeschooled would not benefit from programs such as these. However, they can still reap the benefits of music education if music lessons are incorporated into their homeschooling.
Learning to play a musical instrument can not only improve cognitive development and motor skills, it can also teach discipline and provide a sense of achievement if the student sticks with the instrument long enough to develop any real talent. As stated above, the students may not be able to take advantage of playing in school ensembles, but most communities provide plenty of opportunities for homeschooled students to play in ensembles outside of schools. This could be very important if a student really develops a passion for music and wishes to play in ensembles in college.
Whether a child attends a public school or is educated in the home, there can be no denying the importance that music education can play in his or her life. Music can be invaluable to anyone’s education, and more people both in the schools and in the home are benefitting from this understanding.
[author] [author_info]About the Author
Maria McDonald is a choir director and also loves to write content for Christmas sites. Her choir starts practicing Christmas Songs in early October and she recommends christmassongs.org for lyrics of all the traditional songs.