Brain Scans Show How Learning a Musical Instrument Enhances Our Brains

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We know that learning music is good for the brain. We’ve covered this point many times in previous articles:

Learning a Musical Instrument Enhances Our Brains

Now scientists are using brain scans to help us to understand the ways that learning a musical instrument benefits our brains:

Key points from the video:

  • Listening to music is good, but playing an instrument is better – when you listen to music, multiple areas of your brain become engaged and active but when you play an instrument, that activity becomes more like a full-body brain workout.
  • Playing a musical instrument engages almost every area of the brain simultaneously, especially visual, auditory and motor areas.
  • Playing music combines linguistic and mathematical precision (left brain) with novel and creative content (right brain).
  • Playing a musical instrument increases the volume and activity in the corpus callosum (the bridge between the two halves of the brain) allowing for more rapid communication between the two hemispheres.
  • This training of the brain may allow musicians to be more effective and creative in solving problems academically and socially.
  • Musicians have higher levels of executive function (important for planning, strategising, and providing attention to detail)
  • Playing music enhances memory functions – making them more rapid and efficient.

Working Memory Training for Kids: Jungle Memory

Working memory is the brain’s engine that powers learning. It is so important that it can affect how well a child performs academically at school. If we want our children to be successful in life, working memory is one of the qualities we should be aiming to develop. It is no surprise, therefore, that all prodigies have been found to be in the 99th percentile for working memory ability.

Most online brain training programs we have seen so far are usually designed for adults. Even when I’ve tried letting my boys train with them, I find that many of the training games are not appropriate for them. Jungle Memory is unique because it is specifically developed for children and they offer far more resources than your average brain training app.

About Jungle Memory

Developed from cutting-edge science, Jungle Memory is an online brain trainer for children that helps to develop working memory. Intended for children age 7 to 16 years old, Jungle Memory is scientifically proven to boost learning outcomes for students.

The Games

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Research on Jungle Memory

Jungle Memory improves cognitive skills:

To determine the efficacy of memory training in improving cognitive skills, we randomly allocated high school-aged students with learning difficulties into one of two groups. The Training group participated in an interactive working memory training program (Jungle Memory), while the Control group received targeted educational support for an equivalent amount of time. All participants were tested on measures of vocabulary, academic attainment (spelling and arithmetic), and working memory before and after training.

Results: The findings indicate that the Training group performed significant better in working memory, vocabulary, and math post-training, while the Control group did not show any substantial improvement.

– Journal of Interactive Learning Research (July, 2012)

Jungle Memory helps students with dyxlexia:

Students (with dyslexia) aged between 8 to 16 years old participated in an 8-week brain training program (Jungle Memory). Students who used the training program regularly had higher IQ and working memory scores, compared to those who only trained once a week and those who did not train at all. Even their language scores were higher after training. When they were tested again 8 months later, they still showed the same improvements in grades, working memory, and IQ.

Alloway (2010)

Jungle Memory produces sustained results:

Students were allocated into one of three groups: Nonactive Control, Active Control, where they trained once a week (WMT-Low frequency); Training group, where they trained four times a week (WMT-High frequency). All three groups were tested on measures of working memory, verbal and nonverbal ability, and academic attainment before training; and re-tested on the same measures after training, as well as 8 months later. The data indicate gains in both verbal and visuo-spatial working memory tasks for the high-frequency Training group. Improvements were also evidenced in tests of verbal and nonverbal ability tests, as well as spelling, in the high-frequency Training group. There were some maintenance effects when students were tested 8 months later.

– Computers in Human Behavior (May, 2014)

What Will You Get?

Sign up for an 8 Week Subscription for US$49.99 (use our promotional code figur8 to get 15% off your subscription price) and receive:

  • complete access to Jungle Memory’s suite of games each scientifically designed to improve Working Memory
  • an adaptive program that is easy enough for a 7 year old to use but challenging enough for a 16 year old
  • an online program that allows your child to train anywhere there is a computer with internet access
  • the ability to suspend your account if you go on a holiday or when you need to take a break
  • a progress tracker – for parents to review your child’s progress
  • a log tracker – to help you and your child keep track of their training frequency (Jungle Memory works best when played 4 times a week)

In addition to the online training program, you will also receive:

1. Bonus Booklets

An exclusive five part booklet series, written by Dr. Tracy Alloway and Dr. Ross Alloway (authors of the Working Memory Advantage) covering:

  • What Working Memory is
  • Where it is in the brain
  • How it is more important than IQ
  • Why smart kids sometimes struggle
  • How to eat and sleep for better Working Memory
  • First-hand experience in the classroom
  • How to improve Working Memory

2. Bonus Videos

Receive access to an exclusive 10-part video series by Dr. Tracy Alloway on how and why Working Memory is the most important tool for getting good grades, whatever your student’s situation.

Money Back Guarantee

If your child plays four times a week and does not experience an improvement in Working Memory, you get your money back.


Eleni, Teacher, Canada:

In many cases we also saw improvements in reading, math and writing and increased academic persistence and focus in the classroom. One student had not improved in his reading levels for over a year and a half and was able to progress 3 levels after training. Other students made considerable progress in all the games and consistently showed global improvement in the classroom.


One of our pupils who had previously been tested as having a short term working memory of 77 Standardised Score was recently reassessed, having completed your programme twice, and his SS is now 104!

Evelyn, Academic Counselor:

I assessed a 13 year old boy with a 7% in auditory memory and after the summer on Jungle Memory, his score is up to 70%! The parents are very grateful.

Emma, Mother and Teacher:

I am thrilled at Jasmine’s meteoric improvements and can only attribute them to Jungle Memory. Jasmine continues to go from strength to strength with her memory skills. She received a memory certificate in school last week, which I thought would make you smile. She’s certainly never received any kind of accolade for her memory skills before!

Get 15% Off Your Jungle Memory Membership!

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Other Brain Training Programs:

Read Faster? Spritz It!

If learning how to speed read seems too much of a task, this is good news for you. It appears that technology will be paving the way for those of us who want to learn how to speed read the easy way. It’s called Spritz and it’s catching on.

What is Spritz?

Spritz is a new technology that is designed to help us read faster. According to the research, we spend 80% of our reading time moving our eyes from word to word searching for the ORP – optimal recognition point. This is the part of the word our eyes look for before we can start to process the meaning of the word.

When you read a word, your eyes naturally fixate at one point in that word, which visually triggers the brain to recognize the word and process its meaning. Each time you see text that is not centered properly on the ORP position, your eyes naturally will look for the ORP to process the word and understand its meaning. This requisite eye movement creates a “saccade”, a physical eye movement caused by your eyes taking a split second to find the proper ORP for a word. Every saccade has a penalty in both time and comprehension, especially when you start to speed up reading.

How does Spritz Work?

In a nutshell, Spritz saves us reading time by making us more efficient when we read. It helps us in three ways:

  1. It streams the words so we don’t waste time having to move our eyes over the words as we scan for the next ORP.
  2. It highlights the ORP so you don’t waste time having to look for it.
  3. It reduces the number of times our eyes pass over the words for our brains to make sense of them.
  4. It establishes a reading rhythm for optimal reading and comprehension.

Check it out…

How can I Spritz it?

You can Spritz it almost anywhere…

  • Spritz the net – download this spritzlet and you can spritz any page on the web.
  • Readsy – this site allows you to cut and paste text, pull from a URL or upload a PDF file.
  • ReadMe! – this is an ePub reader with Spritz. Convert your ePub books to Spritz or download new ones from Project Gutenberg (45,000 books), Manybooks (29,000 titles), Feedbooks, OpenLibrary (1M+ books) and the Internet Archive (2.5M+ titles).

Check this page for updates to see where else you can Spritz from.

So if you have ever wanted to be able to read a book in 90 minutes, Spritz will help you get there…