Music is perhaps one of the most human endeavors we can experience. While there is no need to defend it, since it can certainly stand on its own merits, there are some amazing side benefits! 


1. Early musical training helps develop brain areas involved in language and reasoning. It is thought that brain development continues for many years after birth.

Recent studies have clearly indicated that musical training physically develops the part of the left side of the brain known to be involved with processing language,

can actually wire the brain's circuits in specific ways. Linking familiar songs to new information can also help imprint information on young minds.


2. There is also a causal link between music and spatial intelligence (the ability to perceive the world accurately and to form mental pictures of things). This kind

of intelligence, by which one can visualize various elements that should go together, is critical to the sort of thinking necessary for everything from solving advanced

mathematics problems to being able to pack a book-bag with everything that will be needed for the day.


3. Students of the arts learn to think creatively and to solve problems by imagining various solutions, rejecting outdated rules and assumptions. Questions about

the arts do not have only one right answer.


4. Recent studies show that students who study the arts are more successful on standardized tests such as the SAT. They also achieve higher grades in high school.


5. A study of the arts provides children with an internal glimpse of other cultures and teaches them to be empathetic towards the people of these cultures. This

development of compassion and empathy, as opposed to development of greed and a "me first" attitude, provides a bridge across cultural chasms that leads to respect

of other races at an early age.


6. Students of music learn craftsmanship as they study how details are put together painstakingly and what constitutes good, as opposed to mediocre, work.

These standards, when applied to a student's own work, demand a new level of excellence and require students to stretch their inner resources.


7. In music, a mistake is a mistake; the instrument is in tune or not, the notes are well played or not, the entrance is made or not. It is only by much hard work

that a successful performance is possible. Through music study, students learn the value of sustained effort to achieve excellence and the concrete rewards of hard

work.


8. Music study enhances teamwork skills and discipline. In order for an orchestra to sound good, all players must work together harmoniously towards a single goal,

the performance, and must commit to learning music, attending rehearsals, and practicing.


9. Music provides children with a means of self-expression. Now that there is relative security in the basics of existence, the challenge is to make life meaningful and

to reach for a higher stage of development. Everyone needs to be in touch at some time in his life with his core, with what he is and what he feels. Self-esteem is a byproduct of this self-expression.


10. Music study develops skills that are necessary in the workplace. It focuses on "doing," as opposed to observing, and teaches students how to perform, literally,

anywhere in the world. Employers are looking for multi-dimensional workers with the sort of flexible and supple intellects that music education helps to create as

described above. In the music classroom, students can also learn to better communicate and cooperate with one another.


11. Music performance teaches young people to conquer fear and to take calculated risks. Dealing with performance anxiety and taking calculated risks is essential

if a child is to fully develop his or her potential. Music contributes to positive mental health and can help prevent risky behavior such as teenage drug abuse.

12. An arts education exposes children to the incomparable.


(excerpted from Children’s Music Workshop Advocacy Report, 2012)