Music lessons make children feel clever

Written by Nicola Woolcock

Taken from "World and Press", 

August 2, 2017.


Music lessons help boost academic results by convincing children that they can learn new skills and become intelligent, new research suggests. Teenagers who are high achievers in music are more likely to think that you can learn to be clever and this has a positive impact on their school work.

Children who took fewer music lessons or did not learn music at all were inclined to have a more defeatist attitude, known as a fixed mindset, and did not make such fast academic progress.


The research claims to be the first of its kind and took place at a girls' day and a boarding school, Queen Anne's School in Caversham, near Reading. The project started in 2015 and now includes schools from other parts of Britain as well as Germany.


It is being led by Daniel Müllensiefen, a music psychologist at Goldsmiths, University of London. He told The Times:

"I wasn't only interested in measuring musicality but also other abilities such as intelligence, personality, sense of school belonging and personal strength. We have come back to the school each year and the same students have sat a battery of about 20 tests and questionnaires, including three musical tests, an IQ test and a personality test."

Almost 180 girls aged 11 to 17 sat the tests, which were then compared with their academic results and whether they viewed their abilities as innate or changeable, Dr. Müllensiefen said:

"One of the results we found was that there is a chain of links going from musical abilities to conscientiousness to academic performance. It appears that people learning an instrument us this experience of acquiring a new skill and having a new way of expressing themselves. This might then actually change their perception of what they can achieve with learning and how they perceive their cognitive abilities and intelligence."

Amy Fancourt, head of psychology at the school, said:

"In the first year we found a relationship between musical listening skills and academic achievement. When we compared the data from the first year with the second year, we found a picking up of musical activity alongside that of of academic achievement. Those who had increased or taken up musical activity, it predicted their academic performance."...

Did you play any musical instrument when you were a child?


Do your kids play music?


Do you think there are a correlation between musical and school achievements of children?


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Comments: 30
  • #1

    Stephanie@Fairday's Blog (Tuesday, 29 August 2017 01:33)

    How interesting! I can see how playing an instrument would help to foster a growth mindset. Especially since having taken an instrument myself growing up- I can attest to the fact that lots of mistakes are made before you can play songs. ;)

  • #2

    Blackswan (Tuesday, 29 August 2017 06:56)

    I strongly encourage music in children too, dear! xoxo

  • #3

    yesimlehertelden (Tuesday, 29 August 2017 12:16)

    Music is called soul food.....It is absolutely the right word :))))

  • #4

    Vika (Tuesday, 29 August 2017 13:09)

    Спасибо за интересную статью, прочла с удовольствием!

  • #5

    Anja Ge (Tuesday, 29 August 2017 13:50)

    I used to take violin classes when in primary school and I hatted it so much... Now I feel grateful to my parents. Thanks for sharing!

  • #6

    Mia (Tuesday, 29 August 2017 17:09)

    It is an interesting post, Shon. Music relaxes and make all of us feel clever! Kisses, my friend.

  • #7

    Alice (Tuesday, 29 August 2017 17:20)

    interesting ;)

  • #8

    Ashley (Tuesday, 29 August 2017 17:59)

    This is so cool!


  • #9

    Katarina (Tuesday, 29 August 2017 20:26)

    I completely agree with you!

    <a href="">Kathy's delight</a>

  • #10

    Isy (Tuesday, 29 August 2017 21:17)

    I never had the opportonity of studing music!

    <a href="">Ontem é só Memória</a> | <a href="">Facebook</a> | <a href="">Instagram</a>

  • #11

    Rina (Tuesday, 29 August 2017 22:02)

    I took piano lessons and singing lessons as a child and really enjoyed it!

    Rina Samantha

  • #12

    Lisa Russo (Tuesday, 29 August 2017 22:07)

    That's interesting, I wouldn't have thought there'd be a correlation between the two...

  • #13

    Radi (Wednesday, 30 August 2017)

    I think knowing to play any instrument is such a wonderful gift. I wish I could play the guitar or piano.

  • #14

    Natalia Urbaś (Wednesday, 30 August 2017 07:09)

    I regret that my parents didn't enroll me in musics lessons

  • #15

    Kati (Wednesday, 30 August 2017 10:51)

    Oh, that is really interesting!


  • #16

    RBH (Wednesday, 30 August 2017 21:51)

    Yes, by encouraging music from childhood, we are playing a vital role in developing of children's self confidence.

  • #17

    TiaMel (Thursday, 31 August 2017 16:30)

    Interessanter Beitrag, ich hätte auch gern ein Instrument gelernt.

    Lieber Gruß ♥

  • #18

    Justyna (Thursday, 31 August 2017 18:27)

    Interesting post :)!!!

  • #19

    ilijacfashion (Thursday, 31 August 2017 18:59)

    Great post, I like it :)

    new post

  • #20

    Ashley (Thursday, 31 August 2017 19:45)

    This is so interesting!


  • #21

    Kinga K. (Friday, 01 September 2017 10:14)

    Music is a fantastic "thing". I learned play guitar when I was child :)

  • #22

    Rena (Friday, 01 September 2017 14:48)

    Leider haben unsere Kinder gar keine musikalische Ader. Sie haben zwar beide Instrumente versucht zu lernen, aber es hat ihnen einfach sehr schnell keinen Spaß mehr gemacht. Denn wie Du bin ich überzeugt davon, dass Kinder, die Musik machen, auf jeden Fall davon profitieren. Daher vielen Dank für diesen wieder sehr wichtigen Post!
    Liebe Grüße, Rena

  • #23

    Dresscape (Friday, 01 September 2017 17:47)

    Thanks for sharing this instructive piece! I believe that learning to play a musical instrument as a child can only have benefits :)


    Claire from Dresscape

  • #24

    sibaritismosdeinma (Friday, 01 September 2017 20:30)

    es un post de lo mas interesante

  • #25

    Len Parent (Sunday, 03 September 2017 15:53)

    Amazing blog post! Love it!
    Have a wonderful long weekend ahead!
    Much love, Len

  • #26

    shadownlight (Sunday, 03 September 2017 16:05)

    Hey, ich finde es toll wenn Kinder schön früh lernen ein Instrument zu spielen!
    Liebe Grüße!

  • #27

    Cris (Tuesday, 05 September 2017 02:21)

    Wow! Amazing post. This is really interesting. Thanks for sharing it. Have a lovely day. xoxo Cris

  • #28

    Joanna (Friday, 08 September 2017 11:32)

    My son played piano, but he hated it. ;-)


  • #29

    The Yum List (Monday, 11 September 2017 23:43)

    I've read that music also increases intelligence in other areas too. Either way, finding pleasure in music and its mastery is a wonderful thing.

  • #30

    Lindsey (Tuesday, 07 November 2017 17:34)

    Very interesting! I have heard of similar studies! I had played the piano as a child. And I do really believe it helped me overall academically.