If you’re the parent of a toddler or a little one, you’ve likely considered what would be the best age for your child to start taking music lessons. Should you have them start learning while they’re little, or should you wait until they express interest in an instrument? You’ve likely heard it said that children who learn an instrument while they’re young or throughout their childhood become exceptionally smart or at least borderline geniuses. But is this true? If you’re convinced it is, you’ve probably started looking up piano lessons in Atlanta for kids. While there is no outstanding data that shows that learning an instrument at a young age will make your child a genius, there have been studies done that prove that taking piano lessons can make your child smarter.
In China, researchers conducted a study to test theories that suggested that learning music, the piano especially, at an early age would improve learning and cognitive skills for children. 74 Chinese Kindergarten students, all of whom spoke Mandarin, were used in the study. The students were either four or five years old. The 74 students were divided into three groups. One group was given three 45-minute piano lessons per week. The second group received three 45-minute additional reading lessons. The third group had neither.
After six months, the researchers compared data from each of the three groups. They found no striking differences in the children’s cognitive abilities, like their memory or attention span. However, there was one significant finding in this study. The students who took piano lessons with Atlanta piano teachers for kids three times a week did a much better job distinguishing similar-sounding consonants from each other. Language experts have pointed out that learning to determine the differences in consonant sounds is more complicated than learning the differences in vowel sounds in any given language. However, in Mandarin, the oral language requires precise tone shifts to distinguish similar sounding words from one another, so the results of this study were welcome information to Mandarin speakers in China.
Those over the school where this study was conducted were so pleased to learn the results that they continued to offer students piano lessons. This study produced excellent results for language experts everywhere. While this study was done in China, experts suggest that any language speaker can benefit from piano lessons to improve their language development, especially non-tonal languages like English.
Why the piano?
You may be curious to know why the researchers chose the piano for this particular study. The piano has 88 keys and about 230 internal strings, all of which contribute to producing its broad range of sounds, tones, and pitches. By learning to play the piano, you open yourself up to all of its unique sounds. Of course, it can take a while to truly master the piano, but by simply exposing yourself to its sounds, you also enable your mind to work more efficiently.
By exposing your children to learning the piano at an early age, you will advance their brains to understanding the differences in tone and pitch in not only music but also in language. So while this study didn’t prove that learning the piano at the age of five will make your child a genius, it did prove that it will enhance a child’s language development (at the very least).
You’re never too young to learn
Whether your little one has expressed interest in learning the piano, or you’ve decided for your child it would be best for them to learn the piano, it’s never too late to get them started. And the same is true for you, parent! You’re never too young to learn to play an instrument.
If you or your child is ready to start taking lessons, you need to find a fun and passionate teacher. Don’ hesitate to ask us to help find an instructor and lesson time that works best for you. At Lessons In Your Home, our instructors are thoroughly vetted, professional, and passionate about music. Our teachers will come right to your home for every lesson, plus we offer virtual music lessons, too. Our online music lessons are taught by local music teachers who plan their lessons to suit your child. Contact us today to learn more.