Music improves language skills

Children who 'move to the beat' have better speech and reading skills, say researchers

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Singing, listening to music and playing toy instruments could improve your child’s reading and language skills. So say researchers, who’ve found that the brains of children who are good at ‘keeping to the beat’ show enhanced responses to speech sounds.

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“The more accurate they were at tapping along to the beat, the more consistent their brain’s response,” says lead researcher professor Nina Kraus in the Journal of Neuroscience.

“And we know that moving to a steady beat is a fundamental skill that has been linked to language skills.

“It also turns out that kids who are poor readers have a lot of difficulty following the beat. In both speech and music, rhythm provides a temporal map with signposts to the most likely locations of meaningful input.”

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