Wednesday, March 20th marks the first day of Spring. As the temperature warms and things begin to grow, parents and teachers are reminded that summer is approaching quickly. And for most parents, that means planning activities and camps to keep their children active in both body and mind. Music instruction has proven to be extremely beneficial for young minds during the off school months.
Here are just a few reasons why being involved with music in the Summer is a great idea for both kids and parents alike:
- Music Learning Strengthens Your Brain – Brain-scanning studies show a clear change in cognitive development that is related to when music training begins – and the younger the student, the more drastic the change. In addition to helping with speech processing and working memory, music has been shown to preserve hearing and even prevent dementia later in life.
- Music Programs Promote Social Interaction – It’s no surprise that many parents have to work during the summer, so supervision of children becomes a challenge. Many kids would be happy sitting in front of a screen all day, void of any social interaction with others. Music classes provide an environment where children can connect to others who may not otherwise have anything in common, and creates a common bond to something they enjoy together.
- Music Helps Prevent “Summer Backslide” – Studies regarding Summer backslide, or Summer “brain drain,” have shown that on average, students’ achievement scores declined over summer vacation by one month’s worth of school-year learning. Learning music is known to exercise the same area of the brain as science and math, so music keeps that part of the brain active during summer months.
- Music Exercises the Body as well as the Mind – Music and movement go hand in hand. While music’s melodic and rhythmic patterns provide exercise for the brain and help develop memory, they also teach children to dance and move with their favorite tunes. Learning to play an instrument at an early age also teaches fine motor skills, just as music programs provide a fun and energetic activity for children of all ages.
- Music Helps Children be More Creative – How many parents have heard “I’m bored,” from a child during the summer, even when the sun is shining? Music has proven to increase overall performance in “divergent thinking,” by enhancing the cognitive flexibility needed to come up with innovative solutions rather than seeing from a rigid point of view. Divergent thinking has been linked to enhanced creativity, especially during exposure to “happy music.” Over time, music may help change “I’m bored” to “What are the possibilities?”
Every Summer, many parents are challenged with keeping their children active, both mentally and physically. Music learning presents an option that addresses both of these at the very same time. Whether it’s a Summer Music Camp, taking advantage of Summer programs at a local children’s music studio, or continuing personal instrument or voice instruction, music makes a child’s Summer more fun, creative, educational, and healthy.