So, you’ve decided, and wisely so, that your kids are going to learn to play a musical instrument. It’s an exciting decision but also an opportunity to help your children to learn and grow in more ways than you might imagine. Research has shown that success in life depends upon more than cognitive skills – the type measured in IQ tests and exam results.
We can stuff our kid’s brains with factual knowledge (and I’m not saying that’s a bad thing) but how much better to imbue them with real-world skills that will last them a lifetime. Learning to play a musical instrument teaches children patience and persistence, problem-solving, goal setting and perhaps most importantly, the ability to delay gratification. A musical instrument in the hands of your child could be a tool for learning empowering life skills.
Your child may not become a world-class musician, and that’s OK. Learning to play a musical instrument can bring great joy into a child’s life, but it can also provide the opportunity to learn a variety of essential life skills. As a parent, you need to be aware of this opportunity!
When your child begins to learn to play a musical instrument, there are a few tidbits of wisdom you can share that can help the learning process and provide understanding:
Struggling and dealing with frustration and disappointment is part of the process.
Failing is part of learning, and you’ll get better by embracing failure.
You need to sound bad to become great.
Hard work beats out talent every time.
You might explain to your child that practising purposefully – with focus and intent – builds new neural pathways in the brain. In a sense, you’re rewiring your brain for success. Practice drives home the point that a worthwhile goal requires a long-term commitment.
The attitude and mindset a child brings to learning a musical instrument can have a tremendous impact on the level of skill and achievement. When a child commits to learning a musical instrument as part of a larger goal, skill levels can improve dramatically – even when the same amount of time is spent in practice. It’s a parent’s job to establish clear guideline – in concert with the child – from the onset with no “easy out” opportunities. Many professionals recommend a one-year learning commitment between a child and parents.
Learning to play an instrument can provide much more than merely the joy of making music, which (not to be understated) is a beautiful accomplishment. It can also help a child develop motivation, problem-solving skills, perseverance, determination, awareness and character – qualities that will serve a child well as they transition from childhood into adulthood.
Here at Musiculus, we love music – it’s that simple, and we want to share that love with you. Explore, discover and achieve your musical desires with help from Musiculus.