10 Benefits of Music for Special Needs Kids

Apr 10, 2024

Music is a vital element of every human society. As we’ve discussed over and over, music brings us together, helps us relax, and can even bring back both happy and melancholy memories in an instant. But more than that, music is a language everyone can understand. That includes neurotypical people, those who are neurodivergent, developmentally challenged, and those with learning disabilities or special needs. In fact, there are several benefits of music for special needs kids!

Let’s look at 10 fantastic benefits kids with special needs can reap from a musical education!

Top 10 Benefits of Music for Special Needs Kids

Articulation & Vocalization

The ability to communicate is an important skill in our society. Articulating yourself clearly is often critical. However, many special needs children have difficulty sharing their thoughts. But music can be a tool to help overcome this.

Music, with its lyrics, repetition, and patterns, can help teach kids how to speak their minds more clearly and specifically. The repetition aids in learning to articulate words and understand the message they are trying to convey.


One of the hallmarks of writing lyrics is being creative with words. That could mean using familiar words in unique or unexpected ways. It might also mean using unique or unexpected words. Either way, the more kids are exposed to music, the more clever and creative lyrics they hear. When they sing along, they don’t only hear the words or even sing them; they process and digest them. Both new words and new definitions for words, presented in the context of the song, aid in expanding vocabulary in a big way.

Bilateral Coordination

Playing a musical instrument requires a certain amount of coordination. There’s a lot going on between the hands doing different things, reading notes, controlling breath, and following the conductor!

Even simply practicing alone requires bilateral coordination, the ability to use both sides of the body at once. Many special needs kids struggle in this area, and music can help! This is because bilateral coordination requires both sides of the brain to communicate. Practicing music helps build up the neurological connection between the brain’s hemispheres. This allows them to communicate better and better over time.

Social Interactions

We’ve said it before, and we’ll repeat it: music brings people together. Music facilitates unique non-verbal communication by breaking down cultural and language barriers, creating laughter, and speaking with rhythm. This creates the perfect space for developing important social skills development. As some special needs kids struggle with expressing themselves, music can create an environment and atmosphere where those struggles become irrelevant. Through music, social interaction can become less reliant on verbal communication.

Building Confidence

Another benefits of music for special needs children is its power to help build confidence. Playing a musical instrument is not easy, no matter who you are. For this reason, anyone who goes through all the lessons and practice should feel proud of themselves! Learning to play music helps all kids become more confident in themselves. This can help make interacting with others easier. While this is important for all kids, special needs kids can sometimes struggle to find areas to excel and build that self-esteem. Music is the perfect place to begin.

Reduce Stress

Another benefit of music therapy that everyone can enjoy (but is of even more importance to special needs kids) is its calming effect. Specifically, many doctors argue that music relieves stress and helps people of every stripe relax more easily. It has even reduced the blood pressure of post-operative hospital patients.

Improve Memory

One of the primary reasons music is used a lot to teach elementary school kids is that it helps boost memory. In reality, kids are more likely to remember something they sang than something they were told.

This is something you can (and probably have) try yourself! Next time you need to remember something, set it to a tune. You may be surprised how much easier it is to recall, even years later.

Auditory Skills

Another benefit music offers to all kids, but is of particular importance to special needs kids, is that they can process sound better after listening to music. The brain’s auditory system is very complex, but with the proper conditioning, music helps special needs kids supercharge their auditory processing.

Some anecdotal evidence has suggested that playing classical music in the background for 15 minutes before tackling a complex subject, like math, can result in faster responses and understanding.

Focus & Attention

Many special needs kids get distracted easily. Music, however, can be a tool to help keep them focused. This can be used in other areas of life, and consistent exposure to music continues to improve focus and attention over time.


According to some research, white noise can soothe nerves, which can help you sleep better. Music therapy, though not fully explored, can have a similar effect.

Closing Words of the Benefits of Music for Special Needs Kids

To sum up, music is incredibly powerful! Not only are there decades of anecdotal evidence to support this, but the scientific fields of neuroscience and music therapy confirm it! Music for special needs kids is a fun, easy way for children to connect and develop important life skills. So, let’s make some music!

If you’re looking for a fun and safe place to expose your children to the power of music, explore The Music Studio’s lessons and programs! We offer services for all ages and all skill levels! Find the right program for you, and sign up today.