Music Is More Valuable Than Math

Music Students Learn To Make Decisions Faster And Better Then Most

As many parents know, there is a general list of “why it’s important to take music lessons”. The main one we think of is improvement in Math…though any music teacher will tell you that’s just the tip of the iceberg. An often overlooked benefit–and what I believe the most important of all–is the ability to make a decision. Who wouldn’t want to be better at making decisions? And what important figure in history doesn’t make decisions well?


Why Private Lessons Help Students Be Better Decision Makers

Music Lessons
Make a decision about music!

From the first moments of your first piano lesson, you (as a student) are asked to make a decision. Your teacher asks you to see if you can play a note “louder,” and then you must use as little or much as you know to try. In making this initial decision, you learn that answering correctly leads to an affirmation from your teacher. If not, you get a gentle and quick lesson on how to achieve the small goal set out and a chance to make the decision again. Then, you are on to the next decision!


Decisions About Work You’ve Done

Imagine you’re taking a guitar lesson, and you’ve practiced all week on your favorite rock and roll song. You pull out your guitar, play the song for your guitar teacher, and then wait for a reaction. Your guitar teacher says “how does this song make you feel or what do you want this song to mean or say.” Once again, you have to make a decision. He asks you to play the piece again, and now you’re making decisions on things you’ve already worked on. You are learning to improve your initial decisions.


You Learn A Valuable Lesson By Making Choices About Music

Music Lessons
Play The Piano

Maybe the best lesson a music student learns is that even when we’ve made a decision, we can change or feel differently about it after we’ve made it. We get some time to rethink our decision, self-examine, and hone our decision-making process often. This teaches us perspective, because in music, it’s possible to play a passage to create a “certain effect” without realizing this may be totally lost on your listener. And as a student, you’ll do this over and over and over again until, without realizing it, you’re making so many decisions, and thus have quickly become an expert decision maker!


More Important Then Math

Is this benefit of being able to make decisions through music instrument study more important than Math? I think so. Let’s look more closely at the student who has a hard time in Math: you’ll find that it’s not that he or she “can’t do it”. It’s that the student lacks the confidence to make a decision and then learn from it. There you go, I said it; “forget Math and learn to play an instrument.” Ironically, you’ll get better at Math.

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