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The Musical Brain Essay

1067 words - 5 pages

Music; we listen to it for enjoyment, to relax, or when setting the mood during events or special occasions. But what about listening to music to improve the learning process? Lots of experiments have been done to figure out whether or not music can actually help with one’s learning ability. Many are skeptical and believe that music has no impact on the way the brain functions or receives information. While many others believe that music does in fact influence the processes of the brain and how it reacts while taking in information. I happen to be one of those that believe this is a possibility.
The first thing that music influences is a little thing called “brain fitness.” Your brain, like other parts of your body can be strengthened and manipulated. Have you ever concentrated while working really hard on a puzzle and felt that your problem solving skills had improved? Solving a puzzle is one example of a brain exercise. There are various other exercises you can do. For instance, memory games, solving math problems, or solving various other problems that cause you to have to think outside of the box. But did you know that having musical instruction could also exercise parts of the brain just like a problem solving activity would? Music training can help increase your working memory as well as auditory learning. (Strickland). Music training can help flex a high-working memory load. It helps expand your working memory capacity, and therefore reduces impairing effects of a memory overload (Klemm). An experiment done with second graders from an elementary school showed proof of this. Group A received musical training, while Group B did not. They then were asked to take a quiz. Group A had shown a shift in mental processing to the left brain, whereas Group B had not shown any shifts or increase of mental processing.(Strickland). The strengthening shift that music has on the brain is quite impressive. But, it can do more than just exercise your thought process and cognitive skills.
As well as fitness, music can make a huge impact on your emotions. That’s right, music can influence your emotions. Music can help you relax, motivate you, make you think more critically, put you in a specific mood, inspire you, and help you concentrate. For instance, have you ever been studying and found that you couldn’t focus, and then found yourself listening to classical music to relax? How did you react to the music? How do you think you would feel if you haven’t tried this? This genre of music is stereotyped as being “music for the smart.” With it’s complex notes, orchestra of string instruments, and elegant sound. Classical music works wonders when needing to relax. Most people may find it hard to study or pay attention in class during times when their minds feel troubled or distraught. Listening to music can help soothe your mind, making it easier to concentrate and stay balanced when learning new or important material. For example a quote by Juslin that said...

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