Recent Gallop Survey polls reveal that a very high percentage of Americans agree there are many benefits gained by learning to play a musical instrument. As outlined by the 2009 Public Attitudes Towards Music study, more people own musical instruments and are playing than have in the last decade even though there have been challenges to music education programs. In these harsh economic times, where music education in schools is often threatened, the report shows that it is more important than ever to provide opportunities for everyone to enjoy the benefits of music, particularly our youth. More than nine in ten surveyed agreed that making music helps children make friends, develop creativity, build teamwork skills, and enhance intellectual development.
According to the survey, Americans completely or mostly agree that benefits for young children and teenagers playing musical instruments include:
- Helping children develop creativity (59% completely & 37% strongly agree)
- Helping develop teamwork skills from playing in band (51% completely & 45% strongly agree)
- Helping a child’s overall intellectual development (45% completely and 49% strongly agree)
- Helping make friends (42% completely agree)
- Helping prepare them to be creative & innovative in the workforce (42% completely & 49% strongly agree)
- Yielding better grades, teaches discipline, motivates them to stay in school (36% completely & 52% strongly agree)
stress and providing relaxation (47% completely agree)
Additional study highlights include:
- Nearly all (96%) survey respondents believe musical skills can be learned at any age
- Most (92%) completely (56%) or mostly (36%) agree schools should offer music as part of the regular curriculum
- Most (80%) completely (43%) or mostly (37%) agree that music education should be mandated by the states.