Heroes

Here's why musicians have better brains. And it's pretty incredible.

For a while, scientists thought music was good for our brains. This time, they're sure.

Here's why musicians have better brains. And it's pretty incredible.

Newer, bigger, and better machines are finding mind-blowing things going on between our ears.

When there's music.

Here's the deal.

When scientists look at brains using FMRIs and PET scans while subjects are doing normal things, the parts of the noggin associated with those things light up as expected.


But when the subjects are listening to music ... eek! There's a light show going on.

Doctors figure this happens because our brains break down what we're hearing into its different parts, analyze those parts, and then put them back together before it's time for the first foot tap or booty shake.

When someone plays music? Stand back. Fireworks!

Playing an instrument involves doing lots of things at once.

It's like a full-body workout for the brain.

Different areas of the brain get into the act.

What you've got is an experience like nothing else. And it explains "musician face."

When you play music, you use fine motor skills controlled by the creative and analytic hemispheres of your brain. There's language involved, and math, too. Plus, feeling, memory, and a lot of everything else your brain can do.

In fact, playing music strengthens the *corpus callosum*, the link between the two halves. Scientists are seeing all kinds of new connections being made as people play music.

This makes musicians great problem-solvers in school and social situations.

Musicians develop higher executive functions.

Musicians get mad skills at interlinked tasks like planning, strategizing, and paying attention to detail because they benefit from learning to quickly handle both cognitive and emotional elements at the same time.

Musicians' memories are also unique.

When musicians process memories, they tend to use an unusual tagging system that lets them file memories in multiple categories.

There's an obvious conclusion to draw.

Playing music is uniquely great for developing a person's brain, young or old.

Studies show that anyone who takes up an instrument is likely to enhance their brainpower.

Awesome.

Music education in public schools these days is facing cutbacks all over, as discussed in this ThinkProgress article.

Educators need to be reminded that we want this trend reversed. Here's some more great info from the VH1 Save The Music Foundation.

This article originally appeared on 01.09.18


Why should a superintendent get a raise while teachers in the same district struggling to make ends meet see their paychecks flatline — year after year after year?

Teacher Deyshia Hargrave begged the question. Minutes later, she was handcuffed and placed in the backseat of a cop car.

The scene was captured below by YouTube user Chris Rosa, who attended a board meeting for Vermilion Parish Schools in Louisiana.

You can watch Hargrave begin speaking about 33 seconds in. The situation starts becoming contentious around 6:35 minutes. Hargrave is arrested at 8:35, and then walked outside in handcuffs and placed in the back of police vehicle. (Story continues below.)



"We work very hard with very little to maintain the salaries that we have," Hargrave, who teaches middle school language arts, said during a public comment portion of the meeting, stating that she's seen classroom sizes balloon during her time at the school with no increased compensation. "We're meeting those goals, while someone in that position of leadership [the superintendent] is getting raise? It's a sad, sad day to be a teacher in Vermilion Parish."

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