How Children Get Health Benefits from Music Making - Ganna Magazine Blog

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How Children Get Health Benefits from Music Making

As we consider the many ways that children can develop, exposing them to music making in a supportive environment comes to mind. As an extracurricular activity, music classes are where kids get to be young, to let loose, and to rock out. Or, they can create whatever form of music suits their fancy. During music making, children interact with their peers and construct new views of the world. They get more sensory stimulation, which is fun to apply in other areas of their lives. We've found these health benefits are reasons that local youngsters prefer our center for music making, and we strive to increase the ways that our instructors enhance each child's musical development:

1. Development of perceptual abilities and performance of complex actions. According to Miendlarzewska and Trost, "Listening to music requires certain perceptual abilities, including pitch discrimination, auditory memory, and selective attention in order to perceive the temporal and harmonic structure of the music as well as its affective components, and engages a distributed network of brain structures (Peretz and Zatorre, 2005). Music performance, unlike most other motor activities, in addition, requires precise timing of several hierarchically organized actions and control over pitch interval production (Zatorre et al., 2007)." Here, we agree that children will hear music and experience morphological changes in their brains, but it's unclear to researchers how much intensity of musical training is needed for such changes to occur. We also see that children can develop the ability to participate in organized musical activities, such as a beginning guitar class, and use their minds to perform those hierarchical actions involved in pitch production.

2. Development of an internal rhythm. If you've ever watched a toddler break into a spontaneous dance upon encountering a live band, you'll see her body begin to move in time to the music. Children have natural rhythms, such as their breathing and heart rates. They can sing, dance, chant, hum, and move, which is good for their growing bodies. They can relate to music without extra effort.

3. Increasing balance, coordination, and other fine motor skills. Children who wish to make music will learn to adopt appropriate postures and ways of holding an instrument. For wind instruments, they must breathe in a certain way to produce sound, which requires discipline of the lungs. Children must learn to follow sheet music with their eyes and to monitor their hands' position on an instrument. At times, children must shift their gaze to an instructor and to the actions of other musicians. This requires a high degree of discipline, which gets easier as they get older. These actions are hierarchical in nature, requiring much coordination.

4. Construction of new neural connections in the pursuit of music making. One study found that children must be actively engaged in making music and participating in the course to reap the advantages of improved neural processing.

5. Enhanced understanding of sounds. From music instruction, children can learn to better distinguish between sounds and to understand sounds that are only produced in the form of music. This kind of enhanced knowledge of sound has been linked to higher achievement in reading.

Musical professionals help children develop their minds, bodies, and spirits through musical experiences. Learn the facts here now. When you take your child to his or her first music class, there is an immediate concern that he or she might not have a high musical ability. However, rest assured that every child has innate musicality and can have fun making music. Of course, if you believe in Gardner's multiple intelligences, some children have more than others. This experience should be fun and encourage your child to explore his or her creative side.
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