Why Music Education

The Value of a Music Education

There are many many research reports telling of the benefits to children (anyone really) gaining an education is performing music. Note not just listening to the right kind of music but actually performing it. Rather than listing bunches of documents for you to read through which you likely don’t have time for, here are some very nicely put together videos on the subject for you to enjoy. Our new first video is from TEDx

How playing an instrument benefits your brain – Anita Collins (Animation)

Or watch the original Ted Talk, What if every child had access to music education from birth? – Anita Collins



TEDxSydney – Richard Gill – The Value of Music Education

There are many good TEDx videos on the benifits of Music Education feel free to do your own search. Click Here

In this video, an interview with Senetor Mike Huckaby, I really like the explanation he gives regarding the bennefits children gain from a musical education.

Mike Huckabee: Art and music education

I liked this next video because it shows the kids them selves expressing the values they get from their music education.

Value of Music Education

This next video gives a lot of information in a very pleasant visual presentation regarding why a musical education. This video does represent other arts besides music, while they do provide for creative outlet keep in mind it’s the music that offers the mental challenges which help kids excel scholastically.

Why Music

More articles about music education are available at:

Quotes About Music and Music Education

“78% of Americans feel learning a musical instrument helps students perform better in other subjects.”
– Gallup Poll, “American Attitudes Toward Music,” 2003

“The schools that produced the highest academic achievement in the United States today are spending 20% to 30% of the day on the arts, with special emphasis on music.”
– International Association for the Evaluation of Educational Achievement (IAEEA) Test, 1988

“88% of Americans believe participation in music helps teach children discipline.”
– Gallup Poll, “American Attitudes Toward Music,” 2003

“Music majors are the most likely group of college grads to be admitted to medical school.”
– Lewis Thomas, Case for Music in the Schools, Phi Delta Kappa, 1994

“Students who were exposed to music-based lessons scored a full 100% higher on fractions tests than those who learned in the conventional manner.”
– Neurological Research, March 15, 1999

“High school music students have been shown to hold higher grade point averages (GPA) than non-musicians in the same school.”
– National Educational Longitudinal Study of 1988

“71% of Americans surveyed by the Gallup Poll believe that teenagers who play an instrument are less likely to have disciplinary problems.”
– Gallup Poll, “American Attitudes Toward Music,” 2003

“A study of 7,500 university students revealed that music majors scored the highest reading scores among all majors including English, biology, chemistry and math.”
– The Case for Music in the Schools, Phi Delta Kappa, 1994

“During moments of musical euphoria, blood travels through the brain to areas where other stimuli can produce feelings of contentment and joy-and travels away from brain cell areas associated with depression and fear.”
– Dr. Frederick Tims, reported in AMC Music News, June 2, 1999

“95% of Americans in a 2003 Gallup Poll believe that music is a key component in a child’s well-rounded education; three quarters of those surveyed feel that schools should mandate music education.”
– Gallup Poll, ‘American Attitudes Toward Music,” 2003

“Martin Gardiner of Brown University tracked the criminal records of Rhode Island residents from birth through age 30, and he concluded the more a resident was involved in music, the lower the person’s arrest record.”
– Music Linked to Reduced Criminality, MUSICA Research Notes, Winter 2000

“Students of lower socioeconomic status who took music lessons in grades 8-12 increased their math scores significantly as compared to non-music students. But just as important, reading, history, geography and even social skills soared by 40%.”
– Gardiner, Fox, Jeffrey and Knowles, Nature, May 23, 1996

“Middle school and high school students who participated in instrumental music performances scored significantly higher than their non-band peers in standardized tests.”
– University of Sarasota Study, Jeffrey Lynn Kluball; East Texas State

“University Study, Daryl Erick Trent In 2003, 54% of American households reported having a least one musical instrument player, the highest figure since the study began in 1978.”
– Gallup Poll, “American Attitudes Toward Music,” 2003

“The College Entrance Examination Board found that students in music appreciation scored 63 points higher on verbal and 44 points higher on math than students with no arts participation.
– College-Bound Seniors National Report.”
“Profile of SAT Program Test Takers. Princeton, NJ.” The College Entrance Examination Board, 2001

“The world’s top academic countries place a high value on music education. Hungary, Netherlands and Japan have required music training at the elementary and middle school levels, both instrumental and vocal, for several decades.”
– 1988 International Association for the Evaluation of Educational Achievement (IAEEA) Test

“Music training helps under-achievers. Students lagging behind in scholastic performance caught up to their fellow students in reading and surpassed their classmates in math by 22% when given music instruction over seven months.”
– Nature, May 23, 1996

“College-age musicians are emotionally healthier than their non-musician counterparts for performance anxiety, emotional concerns and alcohol-related problems.”
– Houston Chronicle, January 11, 1998

“U.S. Department of Education data show that students who report consistently high levels of involvement in instrumental music during the middle- and high-school years show ‘significantly higher levels of mathematics proficiency by grade 12.'”
– James Catterall, Richard Chapleau, and John lwanaga, “Involvement in the Arts and Human Development, ” 1999

“A Columbia University study revealed that students in the arts are found to be more cooperative with teachers and peers, more self-confident and better able to express their ideas. These benefits exist across socioeconomic levels.”
– The Arts Education Partnership, 1999

“The nation’s top business executives agree that arts education programs can help repair weaknesses in American education and better prepare workers for the 21st century.”
– The Changing Workplace is Changing Our View of Education, BusinessWeek, October 1996

“Music integrated into seventh- and eighth-grade social studies results in better subject performance and better social behaviors and attitudes.”
-National Educational Longitudinal Study, 1988

“When a child learns by experience that music forges direct links between self and world, self-expression becomes more fluent; the music helps interpret ‘who I am.'”
– Growing up Complete, the report of the National Commission on Music Education, 1990

“96% of respondents to a U.S. Gallup Poll believe participation in a school band is a good way for children to develop teamwork skills.”
– Gallup Poll, “American Attitudes Toward Music”, 2003

“A study of 237 second-grade children involved with both piano keyboard training and innovative math software scored 27% higher on proportional math and fractions tests than students only using the math software.”
– Amy Graziano, Matthew Peterson, and Gordon Shaw, Neurological Research 21, March 1999

“Researchers noted that the college-aged music students seemed to have surer footing when facing tests.”
– Houston Chronicle, January 11, 1998

“How is it that music can, without words, evoke our laughter, our tears, our highest aspiration?”
– Jane Swan (b. 1943)

“We know an age more vividly through its music than through its historians.”
– Rosanne Ambrose-Brown

“Music expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to be silent.”
– Victor Hugo (1802-1885)

“We listen to great music and know that all our joys and sorrows are part of something beyond our comprehension – and so indefinitely valuable.”
– Jesse O’Neill

“I always loved music; whoso has skill in this art is of good temperament, fitted for all things. We must teach music in schools; a schoolmaster ought to have skill in music, or I would not regard him.”
– Martin Luther (1483-1546)

“Music may achieve the highest of all mission: she may be a bond between nations, races, and states, who are strangers in many ways; she may unite what is disunited and bring peace to what is hostile.”
– Dr. Max Bendiner

“Music hath charms to soothe a savage breast, to soften rocks, or to bend a knotted oak.”
– William Congreve (1670-1729)

“Music speaks of Platonic truth – the idea river rather than the polluted reality, love as we dream it rather than we experience it, grief noble and uplifting rather than our distracted weeping. It is necessary to our survival and our sanity.”
– Pam Brown

“During the Gulf War, the few opportunities I had for relaxation I always listened to music, and it brought me great peace of mind. I have shared my love of music with people throughout this world, while listening to the drums and special instruments of the Far East, Middle East, Africa, the Caribbean, and the Far North, and all of this started with the music appreciation course that I was taught in a third-grade elementary class in Princeton, New Jersey. What a tragedy it would be if we lived in a world where music was not taught to children.”
– General H. Norman Schwarzkopf — United States Army

“Music is exciting. It is thrilling to be sitting in a group of musicians playing (more or less) the same piece of music. You are part of a great, powerful, vibrant entity. And nothing beats the feeling you get when you’ve practiced a difficult section over and over and finally get it right. (yes, even on the wood block.) Music is important. It says things you heart can’t say any other way, and in a language everyone speaks. Music crosses borders, turns smiles into frowns, and vice versa. These observations are shared with a hope: that, when schools cut back on music classes, they really think about what they’re doing – and don’t take music for granted.”
– Dan Rather — CBS News

“In every successful business…there is one budget line that never gets cut. It’s called ‘Product Development’ – and it’s the key to any company’s future growth. Music education is critical to the product development of this nation’s most important resource – our children.”
– John Sykes — President, VH1

“The things I learned from my experience in music in school are discipline, perseverance, dependability, composure, courage and pride in results. . . Not a bad preparation for the workforce!”
– Gregory Anrig – President, Educational Testing Service

“Music is an essential part of everything we do. Like puppetry, music has an abstract quality which speaks to a worldwide audience in a wonderful way that nourishes the soul.”
– Jim Henson – television producer and puppeteer

“Should we not be putting all our emphasis on reading, writing and math? The ‘back-tobasics curricula,’ while it has merit, ignores the most urgent void in our present system – absence of self-discipline. The arts, inspiring – indeed requiring – self-discipline, may be more ‘basic’ to our nation survival than traditional credit courses. Presently, we are spending 29 times more on science than on the arts, and the result so far is worldwide intellectual embarrassment.”
– Paul Harvey – syndicated radio show host

“It’s [music education] terribly important, extremely important — because when you are a child, you are in a receptive age … In high schools, public schools — that’s where they must have the best influence, the first influence, which will go through their whole life.”
– Eugene Ormandy – conductor of The Philadelphia Orchestra

“It is our job, as parents, educators, and friends, to see that our young people have the opportunity to attain the thorough education that will prepare them for the future. Much of that education takes place in the classroom. We must encourage our youngsters in such pursuits as music education. In addition to learning the valuable lesson that it takes hard work to achieve success, no matter what the arena, music education can provide students with a strong sense of determination, improved communication skills, and a host of other qualities essential for successful living.”
– Edward H. Rensi – President and Chief Operation Officer, U.S.A. McDonald’s Corporation

“A grounding in the arts will help our children to see; to bring a uniquely human perspective to science and technology. In short, it will help them as they grow smarter to also grow wiser.”
– Robert E. Allen – Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, AT&T Corporation

“Some people think music education is a privilege, but I think it’s essential to being human.”
– Jewel – singer, songwriter, and instrumentalist.


Music educators and piano teachers have enumerated the many advantages of group piano teaching including the valuable learning atmosphere it fosters. Studies have also found that group instruction is effective in developing both performance and musicianship skills.

Group Lesson Advantages include:

  1. Develops confidence in playing for others. – Weekly performance opportunities
  2. Aids students in developing rhythmic security. – Playing together and rhythmic games
  3. Develops concentration by maintaining ones own part while hearing others play. – Ensemble playing
  4. Allows students to broaden their musical experiences. – Improvisation, arranging, composition, ensemble playing
  5. Exposes students to a variety of music. – Both piano music and other genres
  6. Strengthens family bonds in a friendly encouraging atmosphere. – Younger students learn and experience music with the help of their parents.
  7. Allows the teacher to present music fundamentals in a shorter time and more effectively than if she were making the presentation to individual students. – Magnet board, reading and theory games
  8. Fosters an atmosphere that is conducive to the effective teaching of skills such as listening, pitch matching (ear training), singing, rhythm, movement, and music appreciation. – Activities that are fun to experience with others
  9. Facilitates the performance of ensembles leading to the study of voicing and orchestration. – Experiencing the joy of making music together
  10.  Establishes a sense of group spirit and group dynamics that increases motivation. – Positive peer pressure
  11. Fosters the development of communication skills. – Speaking and playing in front of others
  12. Allows students to learn from peers and parents as well as from teacher. – Parents and students learn to relate to each other
  13. Provides a setting where drills and exercises can be more interesting and motivating. – Challenges students to keep improving and try harder
  14. Increases attention span, allowing the lesson time to be longer than private lessons. – Varied activities and learning experiences (multi-sensory learning