Music

How music helps children

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In some learning institutions, the music programme is structured in a way that teaches children to understand melody, rhythm, beat to pitch — as well as how to create and perform songs. FILE PHOTO | POOL

Summary

  • Generally, music training also causes cognitive enhancement and improved academic performance, including reasoning, boosts short-term memory, improves planning ability and character development. 
  • “Learning how to play a musical instrument builds discipline and patience. It also stimulates motor, sensory and cognitive functions,” Kendi Nkonge - musician.

When children are exposed to music and musical play from an early age, the impact can be quite profound. Music can enhance brain function in children, while musical activities stimulate the brain. 

Generally, music training also causes cognitive enhancement and improved academic performance, including reasoning, boosts short-term memory, improves planning ability and character development. 

In some learning institutions, the music programme is structured in a way that teaches children to understand melody, rhythm, beat to pitch — as well as how to create and perform songs. “Music is an inevitable part of life. There’s a great deal that music can do to enhance development in a child, such as teaching important values,” says Kendi Nkonge, a musician and alumna of Makini.

“Learning how to play a musical instrument builds discipline and patience. It also stimulates motor, sensory and cognitive functions,” she adds.

According to David Isindu, a music teacher at Makini Schools, music ignites all areas of development. Music education is important and when integrated with different subject areas, it helps children feel encouraged to explore and make discoveries about themselves and the world around them.” 

As children grow in their appreciation of the beauty of music, they acquire a gift that will bring them great pleasure now and even in later years. 

“Music brings another dimension of beauty into their lives,” says Mr Isindu. 

“Children who might have difficulty joining activities with others because they are shy, or have limited language ability can freely participate when it comes to music activity.”

Kendi whose talent was nurtured while she was still a student says as much as academics and books were important, her teachers also made time for them to harness their gifts and talents. “This gave me a head-start when I was pursuing music later in my life,” says the artiste. 

Every child deserves the opportunity to learn music and creative arts. Most artistes, architects, and musicians acquired their interest while at school. Only by continuing to allow students to explore these creative ways of learning will this segment of the country’s economy grow. 

“I would urge parents to support children who would love to pursue music. Seek to understand their passion and guide them just as you would a child who wants to be a doctor or an engineer,” says Kendi.


The writer is the Deputy Headteacher, Makini Cambridge School.