Site Loader
Rock Street, San Francisco

In every culture, all around the world, you can find music
within it somehow and because of this, music has become a big part of our lives
in general. Something interesting is how it influences the development of
children. One way it can influence children is cognitively. Music can help
impact their cognitive development in regards to language, memory, and even
perception. There are some researchers that are interested in documenting
preschool children listening to music and seeing how that effects their

 A good example of
this would be the “Mozart Effect”.!!!!! The “Mozart Effect”
claims that children who listen to the music of Mozart will in fact improve in
their development cognitively. This effect, however, has proven to be false,
but that does not mean that music does not affect the cognitive development at
all. In 2005, G. Schlaug, A. Norton, E. Winner, K. Cronin, and D.J. Lee wanted
to know if there were any pre-existing motoric, neural, or cognitive markers
for abilities in music so they created a study. !!!!Once their study had ended they
found that there was not any correlation to music skills and brain measures.
There was another study done by L. Gromko. Her study stated that she believed
that children who are under the influence of training in music will begin to
develop better hearing skills in regards to words and sounds that are spoken
faster than children who did not receive this type of musical training. In one
more study in 2008, K. Moore, M. Franklin, C. Yip, K. Rattray, J Moher, and J.
Jonides!!!! found that there was greater evidence in working memory span in
musicians than in those who were not musicians. There is a definite need to
test and study the interest of music in children and how it influences their
ultimate outcome on their performance academically.

We Will Write a Custom Essay Specifically
For You For Only $13.90/page!

order now

In the world of research and researchers, there are some
researchers that are interested in documenting how listening to music effects
children’s development. In this line of research, there is one area of this
that focuses on the things that children listen to while listening to music
itself. There is also another line of research that researches how certain
forms of music might impact the development of children outside of the domain
of music. An example of this first research direction would be exploring the
influential experience on a child’s ability to be able to match visual stimulus
and auditory within the musical domain. In 1994, Gross, Pick, Love, Heinrichs
did a study on whether children could determine the original source of
different sounds being made by different instruments in different instrument
families, and different instruments that were in the same family of
instruments. In 1994, Pick et al asking 107 children ages three to seven years
of age to watch a video to watch two different musicians playing two different
instruments while also playing a soundtrack of one of the instruments being
played, was played. The results that they gathered from this was that children
around the ages of three to four were able to tell the difference between the
families of music, but not the instruments that were in that same family of
music. Children between the ages of five and seven were able to tell the
difference between the different types of instruments and were even able to
tell the difference between instruments that were in a musical family by their
pitch and size.

In a second group study done by Pick e al in 1994, she
showed that infants between the ages of seven and nine months, when showed the
same video, and listened to the same soundtrack, they were more focused, and
kept their gaze longer on the instrument that the soundtrack was playing. What
is to be taken from these findings is that hearing and seeing musical
instruments performed over the first few years that a child is alive can
influence what children can know about different types of instruments, their
sound, and their families. The evidence that was found regarding younger
infants shows that experience is sometimes not required. 

There are claims that when a child is listening to Mozart
that it will make the child smarter. This should be looked at with a lot of
skepticism. The original study was done by Shaw, Ky, and Rauscher in 1993 in
regards to the “Mozart Effect.” In this study, they used college students and
had them work on a very limited assignment. The effort in generalizing these
results to children of a younger age is not proven. These researchers did more
studies on the “Mozart Effect” and they found that there was not any real hard
evidence that could support that listening to Mozart music could improve
cognitive development. Even for college students.

Low and McKelvie,!!! in 2002, did an experiment where students
between the ages of eleven and thirteen were given spatial tasks to complete
after listening to a sonata from Mozart. The findings that they found failed to
back up Ky, Shaw, and Rauscher’s idea of finding an increase of spatial
intelligence after listening to Mozart. After this failure, McKelvie and Low
did a separate experience that used music similar to Mozart as a stimulus of relaxation
to compare Mozart’s music. This music had almost the same exact structure and
tempo. Both of these experiments failed to back up the claim that being in a
place that has Mozart music playing in it did not have the ability to
strengthen “spatial IQ” effectively. However, even though this research ended
in failure, it does not mean that there is not any connection between cognitive
development and music. To sum this up, even though this “Mozart Effect” is now
considered to not be a valid source of musical training, it does not mean that
music cannot have an effect on cognition at all.

Musical Training influences development. How exactly,
though? Even though there was failed attempt to dispute Mozart’s music helps
positively affect cognitive development and “spatial IQ”, there has been other
research that proves that musical training has, in fact, influenced many
aspects of early childhood development. 
In music training, there are many skills that a person can learn when
given the experience. They can also improve their brain development as well.
There was an investigation that was done by Schlaug, Winner, Cronin, Lee, and
Norton in 2005 on children ages five to seven. The subject of it was how
training children musically could benefit, and influence the development of
their brains. They had two groups of children in their study. In one group,
there were children who were given music lessons. In the second group of
children, they were not given any music lessons. They were the controlled
group. In order to see the differences in their brain structures, each group underwent
MRI’s. Not only did Norton do this, but he also studied the children
individually in each group and compared the children who were doing very well
in their musical abilities after being trained with instruments to the children
who did not do better with the musical training, and those in the group who did
not get any musical training at all. Norton compared the differences in motor,
visual-spatial, and verbal skills from before the music lessons to post-musical
lessons. When they looked at the results, they saw that there were no relationships
when it came to visual or brain-spatial measures and music skills. What they
did find is that there was a relationship between phonemic awareness and
non-verbal reasoning, and music skills.

One more example to really bring awareness to the importance
of music on development would be a study done by Schlaug, Winner, Norton,
Evans, Lerch, Forgeard, and Hyde in 2009. In this study, they looked at
children’s auditory brain structures who had many experiences in musical
training. This study consisted of two groups of children who were within the ages
of five to seven years old and were taking part of many different musical
experiences. In the first group, labeled instrumental group, there were fifteen
children. They each got lessons on playing the keyboard for fifteen months. The
second group, labeled as the control group, were not given lessons on how to
play the keyboard. Instead, they were placed in a music class that lasted forty
minutes each session and, occurred weekly. In this class, they played with
bells, drums, and they sang. In comparison to those who were in the music class
playing with bells, drums, and singing, the children who were given the keyboard
lessons were shown to have benefited numerously in many ways. Three of these benefits
being skills in rhythmic discrimination, motor-finger dexterity, and auditory
melodic skills. In addition to these findings, MRI scans showed that there is a
relationship to changes in the brain’s structure in the areas of auditory and
motor and tests on the subject of improvements behaviorally on auditory-musical
and motor.  

In this paper, the emphasis of how important music is in the
lives of children, and how it helps develop skills such as perception, reading,
language, and memory is very well explained through the different examples
given above. Of course, listening to sonatas written by and/or similar to Mozart
might not make a child a genius as they grow up, but what music CAN do is make
significant changes to the structures of the brain, develop certain cognitive
and physical skills, and help with memory. It also goes to show that even at a
very young age infants are able to distinguish between to instruments that make
different sounds with the aid of video and music. Music is important in many
ways and needs to be implemented all through life beginning at birth as it does
have some helpful effects. They might not be dramatic effects, but they are
valuable effects. 

Post Author: admin


I'm Dora!

Would you like to get a custom essay? How about receiving a customized one?

Check it out