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Does listening to Mozart really make my child smarter?


Unfortunately, the answer is no…

The original study, where the whole “Mozart Effect” came about, wasn’t even conducted on children. In the study, 36 adult students were given a series of mental tasks to complete on three occasions. Before each task, they listened either to ten minutes of silence, ten minutes of relaxation instructions, or ten minutes of Mozart’s sonata for two pianos in D major. Obviously, the study found that students who listened to Mozart did better at tasks where they had to create shapes in their minds. They also were better at spatial tasks where they had to look at folded up pieces of paper with cuts in them and to predict how they would appear when unfolded. However, the Mozart Effect lasted merely 15min in the test. After that, no differentiated results were derived.

Many studies followed thereafter trying to find the winning formula to enhance intelligence. However, time and again, studies were done on adults, not children. Also, some studies had proven that the effect was also found on music which the subjects enjoyed (yes, including rock music), that it wasn’t unique to Mozart’s music afterall.

In fact, it doesn’t have to be music. Anything that makes you more alert should work just as well – painting or stacking blocks, for instance.

In a nutshell,

  1. The effect of being ‘smarter’ is only temporary, at most 15min after listening to it.
  2. Tests used to prove this musical effect was in fact, only shapes prediction, like those IQ questions that ask you which net makes up the 3d box etc, not on general intelligence.
  3. You can get the same effect from doing anything you like! Like listening to your favorite pop song or exercising!