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Jan 5 / Greg

Musical training and brain development

The largest study of its kind has shown a link between musical training and brain development.

The study was published by the Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry and the authors analysed brain scans of 232 children aged 6-18.

The authors of that study wrote: “[These] statistics, when taken in the context of our present neuro-imaging results, underscore the vital importance of finding new and innovative ways to make music training more widely available to youths, beginning in childhood”.

In a separate study, researchers at Northwestern University studied brain activity of children in Los Angeles, who were involved in a non-profit that provides music education to disadvantaged.

The benefits of music lessons on young people’s brains are much stronger when the students actually pay attention.

Those who regularly attended music classes and actively participated showed larger improvements in reading scores and in how the brain processes speech.

Kraus said, “These findings are a testament that it’s a mistake to think of music education as a quick fix, but that if it’s an ongoing part of children’s education, making music can have a profound and lifelong impact on listening and learning”.

Another interesting article about music and its relationship with brain development is published here, by Guido K.W. Frank, MD.

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