The Benefits to Children Engaging in Music-Making

By Faith Halverson, Music Therapist at The Lesson Studio

Faith Halverson, Music Therapist at The Lesson Studio

Faith Halverson

Music has long played a special and varied role in childhood development. Universally, lullabies are sung as a way to soothe infants and young children to sleep. Music can also be used to convey information, and songs such as “The Alphabet Song” (or the “Schoolhouse Rock” series for those of us kids of the 70‘s) have been used to teach children academic concepts. As their children grow older, many parents also see the value of their children studying music by having them take private music lessons. However, while older children can benefit from becoming musically active, young children as well can benefit from engaging in musical activities. The fields of music therapy and neurology have shown that music has a physical, emotional, and psychological effect on a person. Recent neurological studies have shown that music activates multiple areas of the brain, including those involved in motor function, speech, language, cognition and executive functioning, memory, and emotions.  Through neurological research specific to music, it is now becoming understood that the brain is physically changed through engaging in music-making and that music can
actually help build the brain.

How might your child benefit from engaging in music-making? By providing opportunities for your child to participate in music-making, you are:

• allowing them to engage in rhythm and movement activities that can help them to synchronize their brains and bodies, thereby helping them to further develop motor coordination.

• providing opportunities for your child to use and develop their voices in ways different than in speaking, allowing the ability for greater self-expression.

• helping them to increase their ability to maintain focus and sustain attention to tasks at hand, while simultaneously developing problem-solving strategies and the
ability to think creatively and critically.

What is music therapy and how does it differ from music instruction? While engaging in music-making can have beneficial, therapeutic effect, a difference
exists between music instruction and music therapy. Music therapy is a recognized healthcare profession in which music is used as the primary means of addressing the
physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual needs of an individual or group. A Board-Certified Music Therapist is trained to assess individuals in multiple areas of
functioning and to then use that information in devising therapeutic goals and objectives.

To find out more about music therapy, go to the website for SoundWell Music Therapy: http://www.soundwellmusictherapy.com, or you can contact me, Faith Halverson-Ramos, MA, MT-BC, NMT, directly at faith@soundwellmusictherapy.com.

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One Response to “The Benefits to Children Engaging in Music-Making”

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