I chanced upon this article published in Today Papers.(26th October 2009)
Learning how to play an instrument apparently makes one smarter (studies have shown this effect on both young and old); it changes the shape and the power of the brain.
I have previously read on a report on the relationship between music and Mathematics.
Personally, I would think children should learn how to play an instrument for interest and enjoyment. Any benefits of increasing IQ, becoming smarter would be additional bonuses. Parents should not ‘force’ children to learn music with these bonuses as the main objectives. Afterall, learning music is a long term commitment which requires real passion to enjoy the process.
Photo Credit: ecastro