When it comes time to tighten up the budget one of the first things to go is the arts. Schools eliminate programs or parents opt out of programs to save money. Music can have such a profound effect on a child’s development, however, that parents may want to reconsider before deciding not to sign their children up for music lessons. Instead of eliminating music, consider finding ways to fit it into the budget such as finding low price musical instruments and taking advantage of free public school music programs when available.

The process of learning musical instrument helps children develop their emotional, mental and cognitive abilities. It helps improve concentration, coordination and self- confidence. Studies show that there is a correlation between music and higher academic achievement. Children who learn to play an instrument tend to have better math and reading scores. Music is known to improve memory, boost brain power and aid in social skills. It also fosters creativity and teaches patience and discipline; skills many of today’s youth are lacking. Finally, it’s known to help relieve stress which is an outlet many youth need in today’s high pressure society.

The many benefits of music to a child’s development are compelling reasons to fit it into the budget, and it may not be as expensive as you think. When your child comes home asking to sign up for band class at school and you start looking at the prices of saxophones, clarinets and flutes it may look impossible. The best way to save money is to skip the rental contract the local music store is trying to push on you and look for low price musical instruments second hand. A pawn shop in Cincinnati may be your best bet. Not only do pawn shops have affordable guitars they also carry many other quality instruments. Remember your goal at this point is for your child to reap the benefits of the process of learning how to play. A low price musical instrument from a pawn shop can put them on that path without breaking your budget.