Why do Singapore parents send their children for music lessons?

by Education Cube, posted on Apr 23, 2016

Why do Singapore parents send their children for music lessons?

 By Education Cube
23 Apr 2016

It may seem quite common in Singapore for parents to send their children for music lessons outside of school. But why do they do it? Some parents do indeed believe that there is benefit in cultivating in their children an appreciation of music for music’s sake, and as a form of self-expression.  

Treble Clef Image

However, if there are any who may need more convincing about the benefits of a musical education, science has some explanations to back it up. Research has shown that the active learning of a musical instrument can be far more beneficial than merely listening or being exposed to music.

This is also related to the theory that human beings are all born with “multiple intelligences”, or MI, as opposed to the idea that we have only a singular intelligence such as an IQ, or intelligence quotient. According to research from the Harvard School of Graduate Education, humans are theorised to possess at least 8 different MIs, such as spatial, bodily-kinesthetic, and logical intelligences.

How these 8 combine in every individual would help explain why some children are bookworms while others love the outdoors. The interesting thing is that it could be possible to nurture many MIs at the same time just by working on musical intelligence.

For instance, specifically learning to play music leads to improved brain processing in ways that are advantageous for them in school. It helps children to be able to better grasp patterns that could be useful to their learning of mathematics (mathematical/logical intelligence), or develop rhythm that could be useful for learning languages (linguistic intelligence).

Child experimenting with musical instruments

The discipline required to learn a musical instrument, and successfully play one accurately, naturally sharpens a child’s coordination and motor skills (bodily-kinesthetic intelligence), while also building their greater relational awareness of what they are doing where they are doing it in (spatial intelligence). In addition, it has the benefits of promoting their social skills from performing or playing music together with others (interpersonal intelligence), and strengthening a child’s internal awareness and control of self and behaviour (intrapersonal intelligence).

What kind of music lessons and instruments are popular?

Here in Singapore, the range of music lessons and the ages they cater for have been expanding over the years. Children can be taught in classes to play an instrument from as young as the age of 3. Apart from classical instruments like the piano and the violin which have been perennially popular over the decades, children can now choose instruments from just about every genre of music, from the electric guitar to the guzhen.

How much does it cost to learn music in Singapore?

Music lesson fees also vary rather widely to cater to every possible budget, schedule, and preferred learning style. The cost can start from S$20 a session at neighbourhood Community Centres, S$45 for private lessons, or even more than $120 per session for private lessons with professional performers.

What kind of music education can you pursue in Singapore schools?

Within the education system, schools themselves have gradually been offering wider exposure to music in genres such as jazz, and in areas such as composition and vocals. Yet beyond their Co-Curricular Activity (CCA) options, or music as an examinable subject in the Music Elective Programme (MEP), it has also became possible for students to pursue a dedicated arts education paired with an International Baccalaureate (IB) at the School of the Arts (SOTA). Students there can choose, for example, to specialise in formal music training from as young as 13.

With such a vast array of selection available now for both breadth and depth in music exposure and education, parents many choices to consider for something that would best fit their child’s interests and temperament.


About Education Cube

Education Cube is an education and learning hub where students and parents can learn about and make contact with businesses and services. Whether you are a parent researching the next step in your child’s learning journey, a student looking to find a swimming coach or math tutor, or an adult looking to upgrade your academic qualifications and professional skills, you can find hundreds of schools, learning centres, and other related information about them here.

Explore our site. A list of music schools can be found at http://www.educationcube.com/music



This is How Music can Change your Brain (TIME, 16 Dec 2014)
The Benefits of a Music Education (PBS.org)
Twelve Benefits of Music Education (Children’sMusicWorkshop.com)
Six Benefits of Music Lessons (Parents.com)