The potential economic benefit of trained mathematicians and scientists may be obvious to policy makers, and as scientists we can appreciate this. It can be difficult to envision how a third grader's piano lessons will lead to future economic gains; however, the hidden benefits of language and music training on cognitive health and brain function should not be overlooked. It's time to put what's "extra" back into the curriculum and embrace arts programming in schools as an essential part of building and maintaining cognitive health both in the present and into the future.
Cognitive Neuroscientist, Rotman Research Institute
Jennifer Heisz is a cognitive neuroscientist at the Rotman Research Institute at Baycrest Center, University of Toronto. Jennifer is a NSERC Canadian Graduate Scholar, and received her Ph.D. from the Department of Psychology, Neuroscience & Behaviour at McMaster University. Her research aims to unravel the intricate relationship between brain function, behaviour, and life experience as predictors of healthy cognitive function across the lifespan. For more information visit: www.jenniferheisz.ca
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