music and children

When you hear music how does it make you feel? Does it get your creative juices flowing? Does it put a smile on your face? All of these can happen and more! Both children and adults can feel better after listening to music. 

Music can also do some pretty cool things for children’s brains and their development. Many people don’t realize that music is not only good for the soul but also the mind. Let’s take a look at the effect music has on children’s brains.

Music and Brain Development

The impact that music can have on brain development is impressive. Research has shown that music training before the age of seven can change the brain’s structure and function. One study uncovered that the white matter in the corpus callosum can increase, which results in more brain connectivity. 

Early music training can also increase the gray matter in the cerebral cortex, the part of the brain that’s in charge of sensory and motor skills. The improved coordination can also help to control emotions. This can help to prevent kids from overreacting and help them handle frustration better. Other findings discovered that musical training can increase the blood flow in the left side of the brain which can help them process language better.

There is also research to indicate that music training can help children’s auditory systems mature faster compared with children who don’t have music training. This could accelerate their development of language and reading, as well as in other areas.

music and children

Strengthening the Brain’s Executive Functions

A 2014 study found that learning a musical instrument improves and strengthens the brain’s executive functions. The brain’s executive functions cover things like problem-solving, controlling behavior, and making good choices. These are all skills that can help kids as they grow up.

Music and Spatial Reasoning

Music can also impact spatial and temporal reasoning skills.  Research by psychologist Dr. Frances Rauscher and neuroscientist Gordon Shaw discovered that children who took music lessons did better on those types of tasks compared with kids who took computer lessons. Classical music has been found to be especially helpful when it comes to spatial reasoning in children. This may be because classical music is more mathematical and more complex than other types of music.

Besides listening to music, learning to play music can also have an impact on spatial reasoning. Researchers found that children who took piano lessons for six months improved their ability to finish puzzles and do other spatial tasks by as much as 30%. Many believe that musical instructions make new pathways in the brain that help with these types of tasks.

Music and IQ

Parents may also be interested to know about the impact music can have on a child’s IQ. In a 2006 study published in the  Journal of Educational Psychology, researchers found that music lessons seemed to improve a child’s IQ and academic performance. They also uncovered that the longer the children study music, the more of a positive effect it has on them. So keep learning that music!

Music and Social Development

It’s also important to look at the impact music can have on social development in children. A study from the Florida International University’s Community Based Research Institute found that school music groups have a positive impact on the “5 C’s of social development”. These are competence, confidence, caring, character, and connection. After studying children learning music in an orchestra setting, they found that these children all showed an increase in all of the 5 C’s of social development.

Music and Multisensory Skills

Music can also impact multisensory skills because it requires children to process sights, sounds, and touch simultaneously. This can help children multitask when they are faced with different sounds and images at the same time. 

Music and Babies

Music can have a positive impact on babies too. A study at McMaster University found that babies who were part of an interactive music class had better communication skills and smiled more! Many people believe that exposing babies to some form of music at a young age leads to happier babies. 

There’s also research that shows that after babies listen to music, their auditory and prefrontal cortexes look different. These are the parts of the brain in charge of processing music and speech. Let the music play!

Music at Rock and Roll Daycare

At our Inman Square location, children are being exposed to music every day! Their brains are getting a boost from music, instruments, listening games, and more. While we bring plenty of music into children’s lives, we hope that what kids are learning at Rock and Roll Daycare is also being expanded upon at home. This is a great way to keep everything going! 

Be sure to check back here to see all of the exciting things that are going on at the Inman Square location of Rock and Roll Daycare.


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