Ep. 31: “Good Music, Brighter Children: Simple and Practical Ideas to Help Transform Your Child’s Life Through the Power of Music,” with author Sharlene Habermeyer

February 25, 2020

Transform your child’s life through the power of music! Author Sharlene Habermeyer explains why making music exercises the brain like no other known activity, and why these benefits last a lifetime. Music can stimulate critical thinking skills and understanding of STEM subjects; and can be a catalyst for success for those dealing with cognitive, physical, and social challenges.


I read a book about four years ago that I felt was kind of like the Holy Grail of Enhancing Children’s Lives with Music – not just IN childhood, but for the rest of their life. I immediately started sharing little snippets of this book with students and parents, and today, four years later, I am STILL regularly using quotes from the author. I have the author WITH me today! Sharlene Habermeyer is the author of “Good Music, Brighter Children: Simple and Practical Ideas to Help Transform Your Child’s Life Through the Power of Music.” The book was published in 1999; it has been translated into 5 languages; and was re-published in 2014 with 65% new material. Sharlene is also a college instructor, consultant, lecturer and mother of 5 boys.


Rather than ending with a Coda, Sharlene kicks off our conversation with her powerful and personal story of seeing firsthand the effect music had on the brain of her son.


  • A chapter in the book is devoted to children dealing with cognitive, physical, and social challenges, and how music can be a catalyst for their success.
  • Other topics in the book: Learning Values Through Music; Building Confidence; Choosing an Instrument and Teacher; PRACTICING and motivation; Supporting the Arts in Your Community.

Quotes from the book

  • “…learning to play an instrument refines the development of the brain and the entire neurological system  It also connects and develops the motor systems of the brain in a way that cannot be done by any other activity.”
  • Research indicates “that learning a musical instrument primes, prepares, and develops the brain in such a way that the child understands STEM subjects more easily/comprehensively/thoroughly.”
  • Music Enhances Memory:  “…although music causes the body to relax, the mind remains alert and able to concentrate on very strenuous mental work; music improves listening skills; and students listen, focus, and learn better after being relaxed through music.”
  • “Children don’t have to become concert pianists to gain the lasting benefits that come from continuous study of a musical instrument.  It is a well-documented fact that students involved in music do better in school.  They are more responsible, dependable, and have a greater degree of self-discipline.  They tend to be far more creative and innovative, and their critical-thinking skills are considerably more advanced. “
  • “When you’re eighty years old you’re not going to be out kicking a soccer ball, but when you are eighty you can still enjoy music and play an instrument.”  
  • “Music provides a meaningful, lifelong learning experience. It gives our children a critically important outlet for their emotions and feelings; it helps to develop their sense of creativity and wonderment, and gives them sensitivity to the world and people around them.  Because music develops the whole child, it will have a profound influence on whatever he decides to do in life.  In addition to music helping our children learn in school, it can bring joy, beauty, and happiness into their personal lives.  These three elements alone will contribute to our children having richly rewarding lives.”
  • Thomas Stanley, Ph.D., who coauthored The Millionaire Next Door:  The Surprising Secrets of America’s Wealthy, says that wealth is built on hard work, perseverance, planning, and, most of all, self-discipline.  Remarkably, when children learn to play a musical instrument, they acquire these values and traits that are critical for their success, be it financially or otherwise.
  • “Studies have shown that intense mental exercise could spur the growth of new brain cells throughout our lives.  Mental challenges that required spatial relationships and timing (which are required in learning a musical instrument) had the greatest effect in developing new brain cells.”


Listening to certain pieces of classical music can change the way the brain processes information making it easier for kids and teens to focus, concentrate, pay attention, stick to tasks and memorize information. Music can cause the body to relax, while keeping the mind alert and able to concentrate on strenuous mental work.  It also helps children or teens who have challenges with anxiety or depression by inducing alpha waves for calm thinking. Try playing: Water Music by George Frederic Handel.

Improv Bonus: Powerhouse Classical Music Listening Course

Sharlene is offering the beta version of her brand new classical music listening course to listeners February 25-March 5, 2020. The course includes 78 tracks of music specially selected to increase focus and concentration; enhance memory; and relieve anxiety and other negative emotions. The course also includes an e-copy (from Amazon) of Sharlene’s book, “Good Music, Brighter Children;” step-by-step training; and Private Facebook Group access for direct interaction with Sharlene.

The course sells for $127, with an EARLY BIRD SPECIAL for $98 from February 25-27.

Learn more and take advantage of this special offer. 

The course will be available again in September 2020 (February beta version includes all future updates).


Closing Words

To learn more about Sharlene’s Powerhouse music course and take advantage of her limited time offer, follow this link. Thank you so much for joining me today. I’ll be back next Tuesday with a guest whose advocacy work and methods have saved over $70 million in proposed school district music cuts. Until next week, may your life be enhanced with music.



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6 responses to “Ep. 31: “Good Music, Brighter Children: Simple and Practical Ideas to Help Transform Your Child’s Life Through the Power of Music,” with author Sharlene Habermeyer”

  1. Thank you Mindy for including me in your music podcast series! You were an excellent host and made the experience a total joy! It was an honor to be a part of your impressive list of people dedicated to music!