Scientific research has documented many of the benefits of studying music. This research indicates that music study helps develop critical thinking and self-discipline. It improves cognitive development, math and reading abilities, self-esteem, SAT scores, spatial reasoning skills, and school attendance. Music students are more likely to graduate from high school and attend college, and less likely to be involved with gangs and substance abuse.
Piano Students Better Equipped to Comprehend Math and Science Concepts.
Research shows that piano students are better equipped to comprehend mathematical and scientific concepts. A group of preschoolers received private piano keyboard lessons and singing lessons. A second group received private computer lessons. Those children who received piano/keyboard training performed 34% higher on tests measuring spatial-temporal ability than the others — even those who received computer training. “Spatial-temporal” is basically proportional reasoning — ratios, fractions, proportions and thinking in space and time. This concept has long been considered a major obstacle in the teaching of elementary math and science.
Rhythmic Skills Connected to Academic Achievement
Young children with developed rhythm skills perform better academically in early school years. Findings of a recent study showed that there was a significant difference in the academic achievement levels of students classified according to rhythmic competency. Students who were achieving at academic expectation scored high on all rhythmic tasks, while many of those who scored lower on the rhythmic test achieved below academic expectation.