On the surface you might think we can do without music. Is it really practical? There’s so many ways to answer the question of why music is important. First of all, there's a reason why it’s in every single culture across the globe. Art and music is part of what it means to be a human being. And if you’re neglecting that, you’re basically ignoring a huge side of the brain and a huge side of what it means to be human.
But if you're looking to convince the people making decisions about education, you might want to show them evidence of what it does for kids outside of music, because we’ve heard a lot of stories about it but it is true. I have visited schools that have music programs and those that don’t. I see the way the kids act with each other.
First of all, the academics are always higher where there’s music education for some reason. It teaches kids so many different aspects of life, whether its math and numbers, which music incorporates, whether it’s reading, or learning Italian because music is often in other languages.
Music teaches people to work together, which is maybe one of the most important skills. It’s endless the amount of things that music touches on that can help kids grow that are very, very practical.
In Their Own Words is recorded in Big Think's studio.
Image courtesy of Shutterstock