Overcoming Communication Challenges in Children: The Power of Music


Communication has always been an important factor in sharing thoughts, ideas, beliefs and most importantly evolution of mankind. During the pre-language period, signs and symbols were used to communicate. When languages were developed it became easier to communicate verbally. Although the idea of communication among adults differs vastly from the way adults communicate with children and vice versa. Especially, children need good language and speech skills to communicate with people and achieve success in education and other aspects of life. Failure in proper communication among children could result in them falling back in school and they may have to struggle achieving success in situations that rely on effective communication. Several communications related areas have been identified as barriers of communication for children. We are listing below some of these challenges and how one could learn to handle these challenges that will help children communicate effectively. Cognitive challenges This challenge arises due to inadequate thinking skills that can further lead to trouble in other areas, such as imagination, intellect, memory, judgment, perception and reasoning as per American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. The cause of cognitive problem could be anything from brain or head injuries to neurological conditions and even premature birth. Fluency Challenges Fluency simply means being able to talk with a normal and uninterrupted speech flow. Children who suffer from this problem often speak with hesitation, prolonged sounds or repetition. Stuttering also known as dysfluency is a common example of a fluency disorder. According to Psychology Today, worldwide more than 15 million people stutter. This condition is common in children aged 2 to 6 while it lasts less than 6 months in around 97 percent of children. Language related challenge This disorder affects the ability to understand speech or being able to use spoken or written language efficiently. Examples include expressive language disorder in which a child is unable to use the correct words to state what he/she means to others. On the other hand the receptive language disorder makes it difficult for the child to understand the words that others use. Similarly there are some other communication related challenges such as Speech and voice. It is always advisable to seek medical help for these kinds of communication challenges as early as possible. Music can Help At the same time, may we suggest some alternate approach of tackling this challenge? We at Furtados School of Music strongly believe that music has great healing power and can heal most of the issues in adults and children related to communication. Playing a musical instrument from an early age can help children deal with communication related challenges effectively. Playing a musical instrument requires smooth hand to eye to ear coordination which tends to create sync in the brain of children, which in-turn helps to develop their motor function and cognition effectively. Once children start performing they automatically gain confidence and are able to eliminate these challenges. We have seen several proven examples of individuals who were able to overcome their speech and communication challenges due to early music education. The young and bright singer and musician Ed Sheeran suffered from speech impediment as a child. He was able to overcome this shortcoming due to music and singing. Music is a great reliever for most of our stress and pressure points, be it just listening to music or even better, being able to play a music instrument. And if a child is introduced to playing a musical instrument right since childhood it can help rule out a lot of challenges that children struggle through, not just that but playing a music instrument helps with the rapid development of brain as compared to children who do not learn music. As parents it’s your prerogative to think ahead and think different when you think about an overall development of children. And this approach needs to begin from a very early age. Reference:

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