In her book, The Well Balanced Child, Sally Blythe describes that the director of her son’s boys choir told her that all his singers’ reading skills improved within six months of joining the group, regardless of whether they were formerly good readers or poor readers!
As we gain more information on how the brain plays, hears and feels music, the act of singing or playing a musical instrument can be immensely helpful when developing or improving reading skills. In vocal music, in particular, the composer often takes great advantage of the vowel sounds of words, as they allow for sustained vibration for the singer. Typically people with dyslexia often have great trouble differentiating vowels more so than with consonants. Vocal music also tends to be written with the words stretched out over a few beats, extensively slowing down the parts of speech. This can assist children with dyslexia who are more likely to be slower at decoding sounds of speech and may not hear some of the smaller sounds within words. Singing can help develop these important auditory functions and connect properly processed information to other parts of the brain. Not to mention it makes you feel good!