The Joy of Music–10 Powerful Benefits of Music Lessons

Did you know that music lessons can make you smarter and build social skills? 

Music education has long been associated with cognitive and social benefits including increased learning capacity, language skills, and providing an outlet for creativity. Plus, making music is simply fun!

At St. Joseph’s School of Music, we’re dedicated to sharing the joy and rich rewards of music education with our community through the study, exploration, and love for music. No matter the student’s age, background, or experience, taking private or group music lessons provides rewards that last a lifetime.

“My years at St. Joe’s have been such a joy. I will treasure my experience here, how it added richness and colors to my life.” – Sophie, student

Whether you’re a parent looking for traditional in-person music lessons in St. Paul for your child, or a busy adult interested in flexible online or hybrid virtual piano lessons, St. Joe’s has an option for anyone who wants to experience the powerful benefits of music education.

Here are just a few examples of the many benefits music lessons can offer:

  1. Builds social skills. Music brings people together! One of the best things about taking music lessons is being able to share the joy of music with others. Regular participation in private lessons, group classes, and other music-making activities provides opportunities to meet other students and families with similar interests, build relationships, and be a member of a close-knit community.
  1. Boosts brain power. Music education has repeatedly been shown to support cognitive function and learning capacity. In this TED-Ed video, educator Anita Collins explains what happens in your brain when you play music and the associated long-term benefits. One study found that individuals with music training had higher amounts of grey matter in their brains compared to those with no music training. 
  1. Increases concentration and focus. Learning an instrument requires strong attention to detail and helps develop skills like note reading, rhythm, listening, memorization, improvisation, and music theory comprehension. Performing music—whether it’s by yourself or in front of an audience—helps build focused attention, and the time and dedication a student puts in to learn and polish a piece of music can be deeply rewarding. 
  1. Develops hand-eye coordination. Playing a musical instrument helps develop fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination, and provides other physical benefits like balance and correct posture. Whether it’s learning the proper way to sit at the piano, using the right and left hand together, breath control, note-reading, or singing a melody while playing an instrument, learning to play music has many physical and cognitive benefits. 
  1. Provides a break from screens and devices. In a world inundated with online interruptions, screens, and devices, music lessons can provide a refreshing break and screen-free retreat. A regular schedule of focused practice sessions, classes, and simply playing your instrument for fun means less screen time, and more time making music! 
  1. Supports language and reading skills. Music education has been shown to support other non-music skills, with correlations to higher reading scores and speech comprehension. In this article, researchers Gabriella Musacchia and Alexander Khalil explain what happens to the brain when we play music, and how it can literally change how the brain works through neural plasticity. Research has shown that the auditory, motor, and visual areas of the brain in expert musicians are more specialized. For example, the size of these particular areas of the brain was larger and functioned differently than individuals with no music training.
  1. Creates discipline and structure. Music lessons are most effective when combined with consistent, daily practice—ideally 30 minutes a day for beginners and 45-60 minutes for intermediate or advanced levels. By creating a framework to set goals and reach milestones, the rhythm of daily practice, weekly lessons, and scheduled performances provides a sense of accomplishment and sets students up for success.
  1. Supports emotional intelligence and self-expression. The ability to express oneself through music is a gift that lasts a lifetime. Music has the power to heal, convey complex emotions and moods, and provide a form of communication that words can’t always express. Check out this study by Yale scholars Joel Resnicow and Peter Salovey, and Bruno Repp of Haskins Laboratories that shows a correlation between depicting emotion while listening to music and everyday emotional intelligence. 
  1. Fosters creativity. Learning a musical instrument can help boost creativity by creating a vehicle to express ideas and emotions, improvise, compose, harmonize, and interpret different musical styles. Whether composing your own piece, improvising a solo, or telling a story through song, making music is a highly creative process. 
  1. And much more! Being part of a music education program provides rich opportunities outside of private lessons like group classes, recitals, community outreach events, summer camps, and family music nights. Ready to get started? Learn more about the offerings at St. Joe’s and find an option that’s right for you.  

There are so many ways that music can enhance our lives. Through music lessons, students experience the benefits of music firsthand by building cognitive skills, motor development, and positive social interaction. From its brain-boosting effects to creating new avenues for self-expression and creativity, music lessons support a well-rounded, rich learning experience with lifelong rewards.   

Why St. Joe’s?

At St. Joe’s, we know what a powerful impact music can have for students, kids, families, and adults—and we’re committed to sharing the joy and many benefits of music with anyone who is interested.

Centrally located at the intersection of the Mac-Groveland and Merriam Park neighborhoods in St. Paul near I-94 and Snelling, St. Joseph’s School of Music serves neighbors from all over the Twin Cities metro area. 

St. Joe’s students and their families are part of a close-knit community led by nurturing staff and teachers, a high standard of excellence, and professionally-trained instructors who care not just about the success and well-being of their students, but also the surrounding community they belong to and serve.

“I’ve learned so much from my teacher. I can do so many things I never thought I could do! I’m so appreciative for all the help and guidance.” – Katie, student

As a member of the St. Joe’s community, there’s something for everyone—from traditional piano lessons, Suzuki violin instruction, and music exploration classes for babies, to beginning lessons for adults. 

Our team of expert teaching artists provides top-quality, personalized instruction on many instruments including piano, violin, voice, ukelele, percussion, brass, and woodwinds. Learn more about the music lessons, classes, and other resources offered at St. Joseph’s School of Music. 


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1619 Dayton Ave.
Suite 200
St. Paul, MN 55104
(651) 690-4364