As science uncovers more about how children learn, it’s becoming clear that a comprehensive education extends far outside of conventional subjects like math and science. Social-emotional learning is an important part of a child’s development that education experts have increasingly paid more attention to in recent years, and music lessons are one of the best ways to introduce it to kids. Today, we’re breaking down what social-emotional learning is, and how it can be taught to children through music lessons.
What is social-emotional learning?
Things like setting goals, managing emotions, and maintaining relationships don’t seem like they can be taught to children in the same way conventional classroom subjects can, but the social-emotional learning movement says otherwise. Social-emotional learning refers to an important and complex set of personal skills that kids need to develop and thrive. From empathy to self-awareness to responsible decision-making, social-emotional learning aims to prepare children to succeed as adults in their careers, relationships, and interests.
How music lessons boost social-emotional learning in students
Most parents know that music education gives kids huge benefits ranging from improved test scores to increased linguistic and spatial-temporal development. But there’s an entirely different set of skills learning music gives children, especially in private lesson settings. From listening to time management to building relationships, music is an amazing asset in the world of social-emotional learning. Music is inherently both social and emotional, which makes it a great teaching tool for this important area in education.
Core social-emotional principal covered in music lessons
Self-awareness: Learning an instrument requires a great deal of self-awareness. In music lessons, teachers patiently show kids how to develop technical skills and confidence on their instruments, and children learn to recognize their emotions and strengths in the process. A child’s self-awareness and musical ability are developed in tandem in private music lessons. Learning how to play and sing a song or even writing their own music helps kids get in touch with who they are and how they feel.
Self-management: As children learn to recognize their feelings, they develop the crucial skill of being able to manage them. Discipline is one of the most important personal skills taught in music lessons, and it’s crucial for self-management. This skill refers to the inner strength kids need to keep going when things feel impossible, and children run into plenty of those moments during music lessons. The better kids learn to manage their emotions and impulses, the more successful and happy they’ll be as adults.
Social awareness: Empathy for others is one of the most important skills in a relationship. This is a part of music lessons because listening is a vital skill in music, whether it’s a student performing with their teacher or other students during a recital. In music lessons, kids learn that they can’t go it alone, and that there’s immense value in the act of being quiet, waiting their turn to play, and listening.
Relationship skills: Alongside developing social awareness, music gives opportunities to develop musical relationships with their peers and instructor. Collaboration is an integral part of music lessons. It’s what allows kids and instructors to get on the same page and explore music together. The relationship skills kids pick up in music lessons help them to communicate and work with not only with other musicians, but also their friends, classmates, parents, and teachers.
Responsible decision-making: When it comes to playing a piece of music correctly, there are countless positive decisions kids have to make to get things right. Music is an excellent tool for introducing and reinforcing healthy habits like time-management and self-discipline, attributes that set kids up for success for the rest of their lives.
MUSIC LESSONS AT MUSIC & ARTS
We’re proud to be the nation’s leading provider of private music lessons. Our passionate, university-trained music instructors help students of all ages, backgrounds, and experience levels reach their musical goals. So whether you’re looking for guitar lessons for your child or would like to learn an instrument yourself as a parent, we’ve got you covered. Learn more about our in-person and online music lessons today!
Check out more Parent Tips!