The Music Empowers Foundation Blog

National Association for Music Education Develops Music Advocacy Campaign

Apr 21, 2014

The National Association for Music Education has recently developed a music advocacy campaign called Broader Minded, in the hopes that people will learn to think beyond the bubbles. The campaign acknowledges the positive effects that music education has on academics, but they also highlight the many intrinsic benefits of music education, including the study of music for its own sake and the deep foundation of character music education lays. 

The (NAME) emphasizes the positive effects music has on education and encourages their fans to send in their personal experiences so that others can benefit from them and see just how important music is.

For more information visit their website:

READ: National Association for Music Education Develops Music Advocacy Campaign

Music and the College-Bound Student

Mar 20, 2014

Music education, although highly advocated is still not gaining the proper recognition it so well deserves. According to the U.S. Department of Education the arts should be highly recommended to college-bound middle and junior high school students asserting, “Many colleges view participation in the arts and music as a valuable experience that broadens students’ understanding and appreciation of the world around them.”

The arts are one of the six subject areas in which College Board recognizes as essential in order to thrive in college.  According to the National Education Longitudinal Study, music students received more academic honors and awards than non-music students.  And in regards to the SAT, music performance students scored 53 points higher on the verbal and 39 points higher on the math than students who were not involved in any art participation.

For more on these finding and others alike, refer to the Children’s Music Workshop


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Arts Become a Focus of NJ School Performance Report

Feb 10, 2014

Educators for years have complained that test scores alone don’t give an adequate picture of a school. And that's why New Jersey is now including visual and performing arts among the items it tracks in annual state school report cards. They are the first state in the nation to do this.

The addition has been praised by arts advocates and educators for raising the profile of the arts in school and showing their value in education. But is it enough? Check out this story from The Press of Atlatinc City to see what could be done to make school performance reports more inclusive and comprehensive. 

Read the full story from Diane D'Amico.

READ: Arts Become a Focus of NJ School Performance Report

Music and Success

Jan 22, 2014

DOES music make you smarter?

Year after year, researchers report associations between children’s participation in music classes and better grades, higher SAT scores and elevated cognitive skills. It’s also well known that many successful adults played instruments as children. On the basis of such evidence, you might assume that music education helped cause such positive outcomes.

Read the full opinion piece from Samuel Mehr in the New York Times to learn if music really makes you smarter.

READ: Music and Success

Making Sure Young Brains Get the Benefits of Music Training

Jan 15, 2014

The percentage of students receiving music education has been in decline for decades. The Harmony Project, a music program for inner-city kids in Los Angeles,  partners with a neurobiologist to study the impact of music training on the learning skills of poor children. 

Serving more than 2000 students with a budget of 2.5 million dollars, the mostly privately funded Harmony Project is filling a gap in low-income areas where schools have cut music education programs.  Students get at least 5 hours of music classes and rehearsals each week year round. For poor students it’s tuition free including their instrument.

Read the full story from Josh Aronson

READ: Making Sure Young Brains Get the Benefits of Music Training

Drumming to Success: Why Teaching Music Matters

Dec 26, 2013

The music classroom is the perfect place for students to develop critical life skills. Learning about music involves an ongoing commitment to a process (rehearsals, practicing at school and at home, analyzing and listening to music) and a product (every informal and formal performance). By performing on stage, students develop confidence and learn about concert etiquette. Through hours of studying and practicing an instrument, students develop a strong work ethic, discipline, and a realization of their potential. By performing in an ensemble, students develop leadership skills, awareness and respect for others, and a sense of pride and ownership over their education.

Today's younger generation is vitally connected to music -- practically every teenager listens to music; it is one of the few things in their daily life that they can identify with. When music is taught in school, it offers a crucial link to the outside world -- to one of the most prominent facets of our culture. It acts as a bridge from the classroom to the community.

Check out the article from Jason Chuong.

READ: Drumming to Success: Why Teaching Music Matters

Twelve Benefits of Music Education

Nov 29, 2013

1. Early musical training helps develop brain areas involved in language and reasoning. It is thought that brain development continues for many years after birth. Recent studies have clearly indicated that musical training physically develops the part of the left side of the brain known to be involved with processing language, and can actually wire the brain’s circuits in specific ways. Linking familiar songs to new information can also help imprint information on young minds.

2. There is also a causal link between music and spatial intelligence (the ability to perceive the world accurately and to form mental pictures of things). This kind of intelligence, by which one can visualize various elements that should go together, is critical to the sort of thinking necessary for everything from solving advanced mathematics problems to being able to pack a book-bag with everything that will be needed for the day.

Read the rest of the benefits from Children's Musical Workshop

READ: Twelve Benefits of Music Education

Music Can Be Helpful In Shaping Better Future For Kids

Nov 23, 2013

A recent study by researchers at Michigan University reveals that children, who are musically inclined or involved in any creative arts, are more successful in later life.

Earlier studies have proved that children who indulge in arts and crafts develop better brains but researchers could not pinpoint how that translates into later success.

Read the full story from HNGN.

READ: Music Can Be Helpful In Shaping Better Future For Kids

An Arts Education Develops Strong Creative Multi-Disciplinary Minds

Nov 19, 2013

An education in the arts is imperative to the overall development of strong creative multi-disciplinary minds and the progression of humanity.

The global economic challenges of the last decade have forced governments to re-prioritize spending across the board. 

In school systems, this has resulted in the cutting of superfluous programs like arts and music education.  But are the arts and music really superfluous – or are they an essential part of a student’s development?

While on the surface choir, band, drama, dance, and other arts may not seem to be as important as math, science, history, or language, there is scientific research that seems to contradict this belief. 

Read the full story from The Information Daily

READ: An Arts Education Develops Strong Creative Multi-Disciplinary Minds

How Do Our Brains Process Music?

Nov 12, 2013

Does our enjoyment of music—our ability to find a sequence of sounds emotionally affecting—have some neurological basis? From an evolutionary standpoint, does enjoying music provide any advantage? Is music of any truly practical use, or is it simply baggage that got carried along as we evolved other more obviously useful adaptations? 

In an excerpt from his new book, David Byrne ponders these questions and explains why sometimes, he prefers hearing nothing.

READ: How Do Our Brains Process Music?