Make Way for the Musical Learner

How to Foster Learning for Children With Musical Intelligence

Do you know how your children learn best?

musical learner

Developmental psychologist, Howard Gardner has classified eight different types of intelligences, or avenues for learning. Most people favor one, but can have hints of the others thrown in. Parents who understand the intelligences of their kids can better help them learn more effectively. Not sure what intelligences you or your kids possess? Start by taking this multiple intelligences assessment.

Children who possess musical intelligence look at the world through both a rational and emotional lens. The actual process of learning music is about so much more than the markings on a staff. Kids with a grasp on music learning have been shown to excel above their peers in memory skills, literacy, mathematics, and IQ scores. Kids are simply able to comprehend more when music is the undercurrent for all other learning.

So how can parents of children with musical intelligence encourage that natural ability and translate it to other learning areas?

Enroll your kids in music lessons.

By putting a focus on learning music during a specific time each week, your children can explore their musical talents more in-depth. Taking part in organized music lessons teaches dedication, attention to detail, and even performance skills. From piano lessons to voice and singing skills, but be sure to encourage your kids to learn any type of music they are interested.

Use music for everyday tasks.

Are chores around your house met with resistance? Turn on some tunes to add an upbeat nature to the mundane. Play classical music quietly in the morning when everyone is getting ready for work and school, or in the background when you eat dinner together. When your kids are struggling to comprehend academic concepts, set the information to a tune to make it more fun and improve their memory and retention. Whenever you see a chance, make music a part of your family life.

Attend music events.

From big-name concerts to free, community performances, make listening to music a regular event with your family. Try to expose your kids to as many different styles of music as possible. Providing your kids with a good foundation of music is a great way to keep them curious and itching to learn more.

Explore musical heritage.

Teach your kids about the music of their history. That might mean talking about how an aunt or grandparent excelled in music, or exposing them to traditional music from your country of descent. By showing the timeless nature of music, your kids will begin to understand that their own talents are part of a larger connection to music, much bigger than themselves. Music is also a great entry point to talk about other things like history, social issues, literacy, and more.

Let your kids experience music on their own terms.

Encouraging your kids to listen to and learn about different types of music is vital to helping them become lifelong musical learners. However, keep in mind that the majority of this learning should be done on their terms. For instance, let them pick the music in the car sometimes, or drop piano in favor of drum lessons if that’s what they’d prefer. Let them develop their own musical point of view. You never want your kids to have a negative relationship with music. Give them some space to become the type of musician or music lover they want to be – the results may surprise you.


Supporting children with a musical intelligence learning style is about making music an integral part of everyday life.