Eighty-one-year-old Alfonso Hall had always wanted to learn how to play the accordion. Now, thanks to a program by the Conjunto Heritage Taller, Hall and nearly a dozen other senior citizens are learning a new instrument, the San Antonio Express-News reports.
The group meets twice a week and will conclude on August 10. According to the news outlet, some of the participants, like 68-year-old Mary Valdez, joined the group in an effort to dispel a popular misconception about senior citizens.
"I think my white hair tells people that even though we're older and we're ladies, we can learn," Valdez told the news source.
While learning an instrument can be a fun endeavor, some experts say that it has benefits that extend beyond pure enjoyment.
According to KSL.com, playing an instrument can help prevent dementia. Research has shown that creating music can activate the cerebellum as well as increase levels of feel-good hormones.
"They're developing hand-eye coordination so that they look at the note and then they put their hands on the keyboard and they associated the note and the key," music teacher Michelle Barnard told the source.