Intelligence and Music Lessons

Music lessons at Dorla’s Piano Studio involve love of music, love of nature, composition and improvisation.  But did you know that improvisation requires a special kind of intelligence?

First of all, what is improvisation? it is simply creating music “in the moment”, coming up with a new idea “right now”.  Some children are naturally creative that way with music.  Think of your child singing his “own song” based on a song he already knows, or sitting at the piano and making up a tune that you think is really weird.

Dr. Dee Coulter, a renowned Brain Science Educator tells us that “Schools feel driven to produce high test scores and to do that, they coach children on how to take in and understand factual information.  This helps them develop “fixed” intelligence which is great for recalling correct answers.  However, it is not very useful if the challenge is to come up with new ideas, or solve problems that have more than one right answer.  For that, a child needs to develop “fluid” intelligence and the very best exercise for that is learning to improvise.  It asks a child to stay focused, to be aware of the overall form of the composition and then come up with a fresh idea that can fit in!  They key to success with fluid intelligence is “flexible persistence”, a special blend of paying close attention to the form (the persistence part) combined with an ability to think outside the box and come up with a new idea (the flexibility part).  Fluid intelligence lets us think for ourselves and bring new ideas to old problems, so it is usually regarded as the highest form of intelligence we can offer our children”. (from Musikgarten Delivers! Partnering with Parents, Set 3 #3 Please Inspire My Child to Improvise)

Next time Ms. Dorla’s asks you/your child to improvise think HIGHEST FORM OF INTELLIGENCE!