Whether they’re playing or listening to it, music is a great source of entertainment for children, but it isn’t just a nice hobby to have and can also provide a whole host of benefits during a young child’s earliest years, which are also their most formative. Exposing your young child to music early on can help with their development and growth, all whilst having fun in the process. Below are just some of the benefits that nursery age and other young children can get from music.
Memory and Concentration
Studies have shown musically trained people possess better working memory skills than the musically untrained. Those who are musically trained are in many cases, able to remember things even when preoccupied with something else. This is an important component for various different tasks, including reading comprehension and mental arithmetic. In addition to improving memory skills, when your child is learning music, they are also learning valuable lessons in concentration, and how to sustain their attention on something for prolonged periods of time.
Language and Mathematics Skills
Music has also been known to help promote children’s speech and mathematical skills. Learning music helps children in developing the left side of their brains, also associated with language. In various studies, young children who had participated in music classes were shown to have improved speech development, as well as finding it easier when learning how to read.
Additionally, music can help develop children’s maths skills. Listening to the beats in music can help children to recognise patterns and learn basic fractions, whilst children that study music are also known to have improved spatial intelligence, all necessary skills for advanced maths.
Brain Growth and Development
Studies conducted in the field of neuroscience have shown that music can help to enhance brain function in children. Certain types of music-related activities, for example playing an instrument or listening to songs is known to help stimulate the brain, and can further improve the structure of our brains by forming new neural connections.
When children learn and play music with others, this can help to enhance both their emotional and social skills, having to work as a team to achieve the goal of playing the song successfully. This can teach children valuable life lessons in teamwork and empathy towards others. Research has even found that when getting children to play music as a group they improve their abilities to tune into the emotions of other people.
The Gift of Music
Music not only provides children with a fantastic array of developmental benefits, it’s also a benefit in itself! Music is a great source of entertainment for children, allowing them to express themselves and explore their creative side in a safe, enjoyable and productive way.
How Can I Introduce Music to My Children?
Now you know some of the benefits music has to offer children, you may be wondering how to introduce it into your child’s life. You may want to consider the following tactics, depending on your child’s age:
- Singing lullabies and bedtime stories before they settle down for sleep
- Teaching your child songs for their everyday routines, for example when brushing their teeth
- Taking them to musical performances
- Playing music whilst traveling in the car
Depending on where your child is developmentally, you might also want to consider introducing them to a musical instrument, or perhaps getting them involved in an instrument they’ve already shown interest in. Regardless of how old your child is, it’s never too early to introduce them to the wonders of music and all the benefits that can come along with it.