piano teacher in studio

Why Music Lessons are Important

Music lessons help exercise the "muscle" that is our brain

The brain is like any muscle in our body. The more we use it, flex it and test it, the "bigger" it gets. Playing an instrument flexes that brain muscle often. Part of that flexing is memorization and music will force the student to develop good memorization skills. Unlike in a classroom testing environment, where memorization is also "practiced", in a musical environment the connection between memorization and music can be more rewarding. In music, memorization means more than an A+ on a test. In the classroom a student may be banging their head against a wall trying to memorize the types of plants that existed in ancient Greece, with the reward being that A+. In music the reward is long lasting, and always growing. Instead of that A+ which is quickly forgotten, the student's memorization skills in music bring the ability to create, to understand, and to play. Its a long lasting, continuing and exciting way to flex our brains. The best part about it is, the more we "flex" the better we get, and the better we get, the more we want to "flex", creating a wonderful loop of forward progress.

Music connects hard work and progress

There are learning curves for many of the skills required to play an instrument. A great example is any stringed instrument that requires a bow. The first time the student tries to draw that bow across those strings the sound is, well, interesting, and typically not a pleasant way. The screech that ensues is not only recognized by fellow listeners as "painful" but the student hears it as well. The fact that the student hears that screech in all of its glory is wonderful. That screech marks an audible and tangible learning curve that the student can recognize and try to conquer. Its the small goals that are set for the music student, and the achieving of those small goals that connect hard work and progress. This is how life works, you try something new, you are bad at it, you work hard, and you get better. The wonderful aspect of music lessons is that the student can really see and hear these results. They remember the screech, and can reminisce about how "bad" they used to be. Once again we have a positive loop of moving forward not only in music but in learning for life.

Music helps to conquer fears

Public speaking beats out heights and bugs as the number one fear of people in the US. It is a fear that can be conquered with practice. Playing a musical instrument in front of an audience is a great way to start down the path of defeating this fear. Let's face it, even if you aren't planning on being the next great motivational speaker, you will still need to be able to speak in a multi-person environment such as a business meeting, or a school project. Those who play a musical instrument have a head start in conquering this natural and shared fear. The most important lesson that the student can learn is preparation. Musicians quickly realize that if they aren't prepared and well practiced for a performance, it creates havoc, as they get lost, miss notes, and overall get a feeling of failure. Once that happens, the musician quickly realizes they weren't prepared. On the other side, once a musician attends a performance and they are well rehearsed, and they nail it, it isn't difficult for them to see why the performance went the way it did. It all comes down to practice and preparation which are crucial life skills to obtain.

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