A new study suggests that regular informal music-making with very young children may even have benefits above and beyond those of reading.
But there’s an important, interesting, and somewhat beautiful catch – for best results, make it shared music-making in your home.
The team found that informal music-making in the home from around the ages of two and three can lead to better literacy, numeracy, social skills, and attention and emotion regulation by the age of five.
Crucially, its findings are based on situations where the child’s musical activities were informal and shared, typically with a parent – essentially a playful social experience.
Simple and fun musical activities can have enormous power in developing numeracy and literacy: try improvising a counting song, or making up new rhymes to familiar tunes.
But the true power of musical play lies in the unique blend of creativity, sound and face-to-face interaction; the learning is strengthened by its basis in a positive, empathic emotional relationship.
What more of a reason do you need? Get some pots and pans, turn on some rock and just got for it. I promise you, will never regret it.