Music may not be the answer to all the problems in the world, but it looks like music lessons can help with your child’s studies at school, according to a study conducted by the VU University of Amsterdam.
The study results showed that children who were exposed to music lessons over a period of 2.5 years saw significant improvements in their cognitive abilities: inhibition, planning and verbal skills.
A total of 147 children across a number of primary-level schools in the Netherlands were split into three groups. One group received music lessons, another visual arts lessons, and the last one none. All these lessons were given in addition to the regular school classes that they would attend.
The music lesson group were not the only ones who saw improvements from extra out-of-academia lessons. The children in the visual arts group made progress in their visual and spatial short-term memory.
(Read also: The Importance Of Music In Your Child’s Education)
“Children who received music lessons showed improved language-based reasoning and the ability to plan, organize and complete tasks, as well as improved academic achievement,” says Dr Jaschke. “This suggests that the cognitive skills developed during music lessons can influence children’s cognitive abilities in completely unrelated subjects, leading to overall improved academic performance.”
However in many schools, including our local ones here in Singapore, there is a lack of such lessons, with some school even cutting away such classes in the name of lack of funding.
The research team hopes that the findings will help highlight the importance of the music, and the arts in general, as an important part of cognitive development that will enhance and not detract from a child’s development.
(Read also: How Music Affects Studying)
“Considering our results, we hope that this study will support political developments to reintegrate music and arts education into schools around the world,” added Dr Jaschke.
Should we as parents rethink about the academia-driven route that we plan out for our kids, especially once they enter what is now a rat race in the primary school of results-driven motivations?