|Photo: Patrice Dunagin|
Some of these pathways can change the way we think. Listening to classical music can improve some thinking skills for a short time. Learning to play music improves those thinking skills for even longer.
Music gets our brains ready for certain kinds of thinking. Adults who listen to classical music solve some problems faster, like putting together puzzles. Listening to classical music gets certain brain cells “turned on” and ready to work. This makes it easier to work a puzzle quickly. But our brain pathways do not stay “turned on” for very long - only about an hour.
Learning to play music also helps “turn on” some brain pathways. Children who take music lessons for at least six months can work puzzles more quickly. Music lessons help the brain
cells make new connections. This helps the brain work better.
Classical music is not the same as other kinds of music. It is more complex. Even three-month-old babies can tell the difference between classical music and other kinds. Classical music helps the brain work faster and think well. It helps the brain solve problems quickly. But other types of music are not bad. Music makes us feel good. And that can make learning easier.