When I ask parents, “Why do your children need music education?” I often get a generalized answer like, “My child studies for himself.” Drawing from my own life experience, I can tell you this with absolute confidence: the more clearly and more precisely we know what we want, the quicker and easier we get it.
To understand the advantage of musical education, let’s talk about the music lessons in more detail, beginning with the most simple and popular art – the art of singing.
The voice is given to a person from the moment he is born as the means of a congenital, unconditional, protective reflex. Later, the person learns to use the sounds produced to develop a speaking and then a singing voice. By singing songs or humming tunes, children have an opportunity to accumulate musical impressions and acoustical experience, develop an ear for music, and learn to use the natural musical instrument, the voice. The skilful use of a singing voice is one of the main advantages for the development of child’s musical abilities. Even simply singing for your own pleasure can bring a lot of positive moments into your life. Also, singing activates the functioning in the left (logic) and right (figurative) hemispheres of a brain. As a result, the working capacity of the child increases. Singing also promotes attention and improves the mood.
How can singing positively influence children’s health? Singing actively develops and strengthens the respiratory system, which is especially important at the early age. It also naturally trains the muscles of the throat and vocal chords. Because the respiratory system is closely connected with the cardiovascular system, the child, being engaged in respiratory gymnastics during singing, thereby strengthens his health. Singing also promotes the development of musical abilities such as hearing, memory, sense of rhythm, and time/tempo.
Many of you have probably heard that singing can cure such speech impediments such as stuttering. I can confirm this fact with confidence – by using my own techniques, I helped one of my daughters eliminate this problem within two years. The fact is that while singing, words are sounded lingeringly, which helps the child pronounce separate sounds and syllables more precisely. In other words, singing is the cure to many language and speech difficulties, such as stuttering! Well-chosen drills combined with a child’s desire to get rid of an unpleasant impediment are the keystone to success.
In addition, proper speech characterizes correct thinking. Thus, after eliminating a stutter, your child’s susceptibility to general studying and learning at public school will improve due to the resultant emotional liberation.
Children who sing regularly are also very focused. They easily learn foreign languages, they are more diligent in comparison to other children, and they are able to study and absorb any training much easier.
Singing in vocal ensemble or choir is also beneficial. This way, children get to develop additional qualities as musicians. For example, harmonic hearing is a skill in which a person hears and distinguishes a number of tones that sound simultaneously, as well as the sense of ensemble. (Ensemble, from the French, means “together.”) By becoming part of a choir or vocal ensemble, the child starts to understand and feel his own importance and power. Besides, who would scoff at the ability to have a beautiful and well-trained voice? Let’s admit it: it would be very pleasant to talk with such a person – and hopefully, hear him sing!
(To be continued)