Childhood Music Lessons Have Lasting Positive Effects

Music lessons have long been a favorite among parents who want their children to have exposure to the arts, and numerous studies have shown benefits ranging from auditory skills to better performance in mathematics.  But a new study adds a new benefit of early music lessons: advanced brain wave development that persists well beyond the end of the lessons themselves.  The New York Times has more:

Researchers at Northwestern University recorded the auditory brainstem responses of college students — that is to say, their electrical brain waves — in response to complex sounds. The group of students who reported musical training in childhood had more robust responses — their brains were better able to pick out essential elements, like pitch, in the complex sounds when they were tested. And this was true even if the lessons had ended years ago.

Indeed, scientists are puzzling out the connections between musical training in childhood and language-based learning — for instance, reading. Learning to play an instrument may confer some unexpected benefits, recent studies suggest.

We aren’t talking here about the “Mozart effect,” the claim that listening to classical music can improve people’s performance on tests. Instead, these are studies of the effects of active engagement and discipline. This kind of musical training improves the brain’s ability to discern the components of sound — the pitch, the timing and the timbre.

“To learn to read, you need to have good working memory, the ability to disambiguate speech sounds, make sound-to-meaning connections,” said Professor Nina Kraus, director of the Auditory Neuroscience Laboratory at Northwestern University. “Each one of these things really seems to be strengthened with active engagement in playing a musical instrument.”

Image: Child playing a recorder, via Shutterstock

Add a Comment
Back To Parents News Now
  1. [...] article can be found at:… Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:LikeBe the first to like [...]

  2. by Evening Feeding: Gisele Bundchen Is Thinking Pink

    On September 13, 2012 at 4:17 pm

    [...] Childhood music lessons have lasting positive effects ( [...]

  3. by

    On September 24, 2012 at 1:22 pm

    some accurately catalog articles by this web situate , saved to my bookmarks .

  4. by Resource

    On September 30, 2012 at 8:18 am

    Someone essentially lend a hand to make critically posts I’d state. This is the first time I frequented your website page and up to now? I surprised with the research you made to make this actual put up amazing. Great job!

  5. by eu wife

    On October 1, 2012 at 3:15 am

    Hey there! I realize this is kind of off-topic but I needed to ask. Does managing a well-established blog such as yours require a lot of work? I am brand new to writing a blog but I do write in my journal everyday. I’d like to start a blog so I can share my personal experience and feelings online. Please let me know if you have any ideas or tips for brand new aspiring bloggers. Appreciate it!

  6. by vulva tube

    On October 2, 2012 at 2:42 am

    It is really strange, i was on your site just 15 minutes ago, when my browser i use Safari was freezing, did you added some new plugins or anything else which could cause such a behaviour? I visit your site pretty regulary and never had that before!

  7. by Jovita Redal

    On October 5, 2012 at 2:02 pm

    I have observed that car insurance businesses know the vehicles which are at risk from accidents and also other risks. Additionally they know what sort of cars are prone to higher risk plus the higher risk they may have the higher your premium charge. Understanding the simple basics associated with car insurance will let you choose the right kind of insurance policy that may take care of your wants in case you happen to be involved in any accident. Thanks for sharing the ideas in your blog.

  8. by free electronic cigarette photo

    On October 9, 2012 at 4:38 pm

    light-headed maybe a little dizzy..if you smoke more than one it can make you feel nauseous

  9. by Clicking Here

    On October 12, 2012 at 3:27 pm

    Have you ever thought about including a little bit more than just your articles? I mean, what you say is valuable and all. Nevertheless think about if you added some great visuals or video clips to give your posts more, “pop”! Your content is excellent but with images and clips, this website could certainly be one of the very best in its field. Superb blog!

  10. by Technology News

    On October 15, 2012 at 1:10 am

    I’ve been surfing on-line more than 3 hours nowadays, but I by no means found any fascinating article like yours. It is lovely price enough for me. Personally, if all site owners and bloggers made just right content material as you did, the net shall be much more helpful than ever before. “Revolution is not a onetime event.” by Audre Lorde.

  11. by Chin Shanna

    On October 17, 2012 at 9:04 am

    Spot on with this write-up, I truly suppose this website needs rather more consideration. I’ll in all probability be once more to read rather more, thanks for that info.

  12. by Male Edge scam

    On November 2, 2012 at 6:20 pm

    There are definitely a great deal of details like that to take into consideration. That’s a excellent stage to bring up. I provide the thoughts above as common inspiration but clearly you will find questions like the 1 you provide up where the most essential thing will be.

  13. by Terrible Company

    On November 4, 2012 at 11:51 am

    thanks that was a very good entertaining information, plenty of troubles in the planet those times, and most we Sheeps do – is exploring what the stars do, for instance Check out Secret Superstars Recordings, despite the fact that we rather must aim on whats going on in the world, it changes out to become a imprisonment planet unless of course we start up fighthing to get our privileges back!

  14. by newhalf

    On November 7, 2012 at 5:51 pm

    Hello, i really like following your website. I like the way its layd out, and totally dig the topic. Is there any way to subscribe to your site?

  15. by Yee Shellenbarger

    On November 11, 2012 at 5:25 pm

    Hi there, I discovered your site by way of Google while searching for a comparable subject, your web site got here up, it appears to be like good. I have bookmarked it in my google bookmarks.

  16. by Geoff

    On November 17, 2012 at 6:25 am

    Mutastic for Parents
    Mutastic understands how difficult it is for working parents to monitor their child’s progress in learning music.
    Mutastic, therefore, allows parents to connect with and monitor their children as they learn music.
    Parents can connect online with their children through Mutastic and identify how long their children have been practising for, and even listen to the practice sessions that they were not around to hear.
    Parents can also use Mutastic to connect with their child’s music teacher to discuss the student’s progress and further plans for the child’s learning.
    Ask your child’s teacher to invite you through Mutastic, or you can create your child’s account here and use it to invite you as a parent so you can monitor his or her progress.
    You can also create your Mutastic account as a parent and invite your child as a friend so you can monitor their progress. Sign up now by clicking here.
    Mutastic for parents is always free.

  17. by my website

    On December 4, 2012 at 5:34 am

    Yay google is my world beater helped me to find this outstanding site! . “Universities incline wits to sophistry and affectation.” by Francis Bacon.

  18. by Harriett Rodregez

    On December 4, 2012 at 9:38 am

    Particularly terrific advice you got over here, thanks much

  19. by men's clothing

    On December 19, 2012 at 4:41 pm

    Respect to op , some excellent entropy. “It’s always too early to quit.” by Norman Vincent Peale.

  20. by Boca Raton CPA

    On January 24, 2013 at 10:51 pm

    Howdy would you mind sharing which blog platform you’re using? I’m going to start my own blog soon but I’m having a tough time selecting between BlogEngine/Wordpress/B2evolution and Drupal. The reason I ask is because your layout seems different then most blogs and I’m looking for something completely unique. P.S My apologies for getting off-topic but I had to ask!|

  21. by Maxine Billeck

    On April 3, 2013 at 6:20 am

    I remember to keep checking back all the time to check your brand new reports ;-)

  22. by Hiroko Sheen

    On April 16, 2013 at 5:03 pm

    +1 Incredible job! ;)

  23. by Related Site

    On April 29, 2013 at 5:59 am

    Just wanna comment that you have a very decent site, I love the layout it really stands out.

  24. [...] gathering drums, maracas, tambourines or rhythm sticks as they are easy instruments to play (even if you don’t have any rhythm). A crafty exercise could be to  make your own instruments [...]