Is it true that classical music stimulates learning?

What are the real effects of classical music? What is reality and what is myth? In this article we tell you!

Is it true that classical music stimulates learning?

Last update: 06 October 2022

We’ve all heard that classical music stimulates learning, both in adults and in children. Evidence has been found that exposure to music from an early age helps us develop certain abilities. But is it true that classical music stimulates learning?

The answer is very simple: yes. The connection between active listening to classical music and good academic results in children and youth is more than obvious. And it is that this type of music stimulates brain functions related to learning, memory or the ability to concentrate. Likewise, its benefits are also noticeable in language acquisition processes, as little ones see an increase in their vocabulary and a greater facility in language expression.

Classical music stimulates learning and cognitive skills

However, things do not end there. Classical music has also been shown to help children improve their cognitive and emotional skills.. Mainly all related to empathy, as children who listen to this type of music are more adept at picking up different nuances in moods. Undoubtedly a great advantage when faced with the social relations that await them in the outside world.

Another aspect that should be emphasized is the development of creativity, since classical music stimulates the imagination and sensitivity, not to mention its influence on our mood. There are even studies that show that a child’s tantrum can be resolved quickly with the right music.

This is according to a study published by scientists from Radboud University in the Netherlands in collaboration with the University of Technology Sydney. It points out an important nuance: the benefits of music depending on the type of thinking required by the task we are performing.

The results of the study show that in cases where convergent thinking is required (searching for a solution to a problem), it is preferable to perform the task silently. However, for those tasks where divergent thinking (generating new ideas) comes into play, music is the perfect accompaniment. And the happier the better.

Music can be a good companion in tasks that require the use of divergent thinking.

The benefits of listening to classical music

In addition to stimulating learning in children and young people, it is worth highlighting a number of benefits that classical music provides and which are more than proven:

  • It affects the state of mind by helping to reducing pain and anxiety.
  • Help for fights insomnia.
  • Improves the ability to learning new languages.
  • It positively affects the treatment of diseases such as Alzheimer’s, Tourette’s syndrome or Parkinson’s disease.
  • reduce stress and blood pressure.
  • Help for improving academic performance.
  • It affects the overcoming of dyslexia.
  • Increases the physical resistance.
  • Stimulates fetal development during pregnancy.
  • Improving memory, attention and concentration.
Music acts as a balm for nervous problems and anxiety.

Effects of classical music on the brain

In addition to the benefits of classical music on learning and mood, there is a branch that studies the effects of music at the molecular level. This is starting to become possible thanks to studies like this one by a Finnish research group that discovered this listening to classical music affects gene expression profiles both in expert subjects and for music lovers.

The study consisted of listening from all participants in the Violin Concerto in G Major, by W. A. ​​Mozart. The results show that listening improves the activity of genes involved in dopamine secretion and transport and synaptic function. These genes are also involved in song and bird song learning, suggesting a common evolutionary background between species in the perception of this type of sound.

Specifically, one of the genes whose expression increased was alpha synuclein (SNCA), a gene involved in diseases such as Parkinson’s disease. This gene is located in the region most strongly associated with musical ability.

On the other hand, the researchers defend that the result of the study is that listening to classical music causes a decrease in the expression of genes associated with neurodegeneration. Thus it could be shown that music plays a neuroprotective role in our brain.

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