My kids love art…The messier the better. While we spend quite a bit of time with glue, clay and paint, I’m also trying to instil within them a love for the fine arts. Before I began homeschooling, I couldn’t tell the difference between a classical and romantic era composer. Lucky for me, there are great resources available on the internet. Even better, many are free!
In our family, we pick a composer of the month and place their picture on our school wall along with a brief summary of his life and works.I found a great resource that I laminate to keep the composer looking good and to allow me to re-use the info at a later date. famous musicians Once we’ve read the basic facts about the musician, we listen to a story CD about the composer which I find at our local library as well as a music CD from the library with some of the composer’s works. One of my favorite story CDs is by a company called VOX. The titles of their CDs all are titled “The Story of (Composer) in Words and Music”. There is enough music interspersed among the story that even my preschoolers will listen to the CDs.
Another story CD my kids have enjoyed is by Classical Kids. The theme of these CDs is fictional which entertains my kids, but the basic biography of the composer is accurate along with a good music selection.
Another great website that has programs as well games and some great activities is Classics for Kids
Lastly, my kids and I love singing the lyrics that a group called Beethoven’s Wig has made for many great songs. We love singing Tchaikovsky’s Cannonball (1812 Overture, Tchaikovsky), Kings and Queens of England (Trumpet Tune, Purcell) and Haydn’s Great Surprise (Surprise Symphony, Haydn). Not only is it great on road trips when the kids are getting ancy but it’s great for long waits in traffic. Beethoven’s Wig
Some picture books have also been written about the composers. Don’t forget to look for them at the local library as well.