May 31, 2019
Almost everyone agrees music is good for kids – in fact, according to a recent Gallup Poll, 95% of Americans believe music is a key component of a child’s well-rounded education – we don’t know what the other 5% think, but I’m pretty sure they were scarred by a childhood experience with a mean chorus teacher who told them to mouth the words. But all of us can use music to make our classrooms more engaging and fun.
Still not convinced? Here are a few studies with specific proof:
1) Just listening to music can boost academic performance
Even background music can enhance spatial reasoning, which helps everything from creative writing to mathematics (Music & Spatial Task Performance, University of California, Irvine)
2) Learning any kind of music enhances language
There is a proven link between singing or playing an instrument and language & reading skills; and singing is something any teacher can incorporate without instrumental training or even any instruments. (Northwestern University study)
3) Music Education improves test scores
Whatever you think of standardized testing (and there are a lot of opinions!), research shows kids with music education score higher on SAT scores and other tests (College Entrance Examination Board survey)
4) Singing has physical and mental benefits
The act of singing affects multiple brain areas, triggers the endocrine system, provides cardiovascular exercise, and boosts human interaction and empathy. Developing healthy vocal habits also builds self-esteem, confidence, and communication skills (Professor Graham Welch, SingUp)
5) Classroom singing calms kids down
Singing is a great outlet for strong emotions and stress. Children who sing are more calm and focused, more engaged in class, and more connected to each other. (Centre for the Use of Research and Evidence in Education)
There are a ton of other studies (I found 87 million on a recent Google search), but beyond all the data, music is FUN. We all could use more of that in the classroom! (And if you still have questions about how to get your kids singing, check out our other blog posts or our curriculum-based music.)
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