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Classical Music Playlists for Your Homeschool: Summer

Summer is here! I could not be more thrilled. Though it is busy in its own way, I love the change of pace that comes with the summer schedule. Easy evenings, late bedtimes, and no homework = all my favorite things. What does your summer have in store?

I spent more time than necessary pondering where to take the blog this summer in terms of music lessons. I don’t expect most people to be intent on accomplishing music appreciation lessons in between summer camps, family vacations, and trips to the pool. However, I do know that a lot of homeschooling families keep a year-round schedule. And some families use summer to catch up on things that may have gone by the wayside during the school year (ahem**cough cough**music).

I landed on a combined list for June and July (handily labeled “Summer”). Hopefully it will be a resource for those of you who need it, and if you don’t — well, I will see you in August. Or September. #orwhenever 

You can find the Summer Playlist on Spotify HERE.

Even if you don’t plan to do any music lessons, please still use this list to fill your home with great classical music this summer. Music has a powerful effect on a child’s developing brain, and simply having this kind of music on in the background will help prepare them for a great school year next year. Really!

(Spotify note: You do not have to be a paid member to access the list – you can set up a free Spotify account that allows you to listen with ads. FYI -with the free version, only shuffle play is allowed on mobile devices. If you use an actual computer, you can choose individual songs. My Spotify user name is kristihillmusic – just sign up and search my username to access the playlists.)

Ok, let’s get to our Summer Playlist!

CANON IN D // PACHELBEL

This famous piece made the list because June is the month most associated with weddings, and this happens to be one of the most well-known wedding pieces ever. The story of how this one rose to fame is super interesting – we will unpack it later this month.

 

SUMMER FROM “THE FOUR SEASONS” // VIVALDI

We’ve already touched down on Winter and Spring, so it’s no shocker that Vivaldi’s Summer is on our list this month. Your kids will love what the music represents – and it’s easy to hear. (The link will take you to the 6:00 mark, which is the beginning of the 2nd movement. Listen to the end – it kicks in gear at 8:11!)

 

MUSIC FOR THE ROYAL FIREWORKS // HANDEL

Music for the Royal Fireworks is commonly heard in 4th of July fireworks shows. Of course, it was written by a German-living-in-England, so American freedom was not really on the agenda when Handel penned this tune. You’ll get the full story in July.

 

NEW WORLD SYMPHONY “ALLEGRO” // DVORAK

NEW WORLD SYMPHONY “LARGO” // DVORAK

There are patriotic undertones for the next two pieces on our list as well. Dvorak composed his New World Symphony after moving to, you guessed it, the New World, AKA ‘Merica. The Largo movement now has an association with the military, and the Allegro movement sounds like a famous movie score. Can’t wait for you to hear these two!

 

THE FROGS // TELEMANN

This violin concerto from Baroque great Georg Telemann gained the affectionate nickname The Frogs because of its fanciful depiction of the little critters. Perfect for summer.

 

FANFARE FOR THE COMMON MAN // COPLAND

This is another piece that has become synonymous with patriotism. It was used in the Opening Ceremonies of the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles and beautifully depicts American composer Aaron Copland’s ode to the everyday working man.

 

FINLANDIA // SIEBELIUS

This gorgeous piece makes the summer list in honor of it’s original premiere date – July 2, 1900. You might know this one as the tune for the gorgeous hymn Be Still My Soul. It originally had lots more to do with censorship, Finnish patriotism, and the Russians. More about that in July!

 

THE WASPS // VAUGHAN WILLIAMS

I’ve often thought summer would be perfect if it weren’t for all the bugs. Vaughan Williams depicts a buzzing wasp in this piece, and your kids will be able to hear it clearly right at the beginning. Then they can enjoy the rest of the piece – which is not so buggy.

 

RADETZKY MARCH // STRAUSS

This one made the list in honor of Father’s Day. It was composed by the senior Strauss, father to two sons who also became famous composers. We’ve talked about the sons on the blog already (here and here) and now Dad gets his turn. Warning: it’s more of a cautionary tale of what not to do when it comes to father/son relationships.

 

STARS AND STRIPES FOREVER // SOUSA

The last of the patriotic inspired pieces on our list — can you tell I am working the 4th of July into our summer list? A Sousa march with a great story is perfect for celebrating our country’s birthday.

 

SUMMERTIME // GERSHWIN

Finally, the quintessential piece that embodies the languid heat and lazy days of summer. I included both a vocal and instrumental version on the Spotify list. The operatic vocal might turn your kids off, but try and give it a shot. Go for the instrumental if they just can’t deal. (Instrumental linked here.)

 

And that’s it! I hope you can use this list to get great music in your kids’ ears this summer. Find the playlist HERE. I will have a lesson post for you Thursday!

Blessings,

Kristi

Classical Music Playlists for your Homeschool: May

****Update***

Lessons from this playlist:

***************

This is a continuing series I hope will be helpful in getting great classical music in your kids’ ears. Each month I am posting a playlist that will either reflect the mood of the season or highlight music-related historical events. Mostly I just want to help you create an ever-changing classical music soundtrack that will permeate your home with beauty. Training the affections happens early, and we want to teach our kids to love that which is good, true, and beautiful from the very youngest of ages.

I will also be creating companion activities and lessons as the month goes on to highlight some of the pieces on the list – so check back!

You can find the May list on Spotify here. (Details on the JanuaryFebruary, March, and April lists if you want to catch up!)

(Spotify note: You do not have to be a paid member to access the list – you can set up a free Spotify account that allows you to listen with ads. FYI -with the free version, only shuffle play is allowed on mobile devices. If you use an actual computer, you can choose individual songs. My Spotify user name is kristihillmusic – just sign up and search my username to access the playlists.)

Ok, let’s get to this month’s list!

Symphony #5 // Beethoven

The 5th month of the year starts with Beethoven’s 5th Symphony. You know it. But do you know about it? You will this month!

 

Waltz of the Flowers // Tchaikovsky

Tchaikovsky’s Waltz of the Flowers is from The Nutcracker, which is way more associated with Christmas than springtime. But The Nutcracker is loaded with incredible music, and we won’t have time for all of it in December. So I plucked the flower piece out for this month. #seewhatididthere?

 

The Lark Ascending // Vaughan Williams

The Lark Ascending is a fantastic piece from Ralph Vaughan Williams. At first glance you think it is just about a bird…but oh, there is much more. World War I spies are involved. Post coming Thursday!

 

Songs My Mother Taught Me // Dvořák

How about a little something for Mother’s Day? Antonin Dvořák makes his first playlist appearance with a song that, well, I guess his mother taught him. I’ve included the version with Yo-Yo Ma on the cello. It’s a whimsical little piece.

 

Pomp and Circumstance // Elgar

Schools across the nation play this piece in the month of May, but it originally had nothing to do with graduations. Edward Elgar’s Pomp and Circumstance is one of the most commonly known pieces of classical music in the U.S. Later this month I’ll tell you the story of how it became the graduation song!

 

The Cuckoo and Aviary // Saint-Saëns

Now a double bird feature: The Cuckoo and Aviary from Camille Saint-Saëns’ The Carnival of the Animals. More bird music. What can I say? It’s springtime, and the birds are chirping!

 

Pavane // Fauré

Pavane by Gabriel Fauré is on the list to celebrate his birthday this month. I know you don’t care that it’s Fauré’s birthday. I don’t either…but it was a great excuse to get this piece on a playlist. I’ve already featured this on my list of favorite peaceful classical music pieces – it gets another playlist appearance because I love it. I begin many mornings just sitting still and listening to this piece. Super calming!

 

Spring Song // Mendelssohn

Felix Mendelssohn has a funny little collection of music called Songs without Words and his Spring Song is one of the most recognizable. It’s a light little tune, perfect for springtime.

 

Adagio for Strings // Barber

In sharp contrast is a very not-light tune from Samuel Barber. Adagio for Strings is gloriously heavy and dark, and I included it in honor of Memorial Day. It’s been used at many famous funerals over the years. That’s a little heavy for kids, but I’ll try to help you get the point across without being too depressing. Mostly it’s just really, really beautiful and I just need you to know about this one.

 

Okay, that’s our list! Come back Thursday and we’ll get started with our first lesson!

Blessings,

Kristi

 

 

 

Seasonal Classical Music Playlists: April

This is a continuing series I hope will be helpful in getting great classical music in your kids’ ears. Each month I am posting a playlist that will either reflect the mood of the season or highlight music-related historical events. Mostly I just want to help you create an ever-changing classical music soundtrack that will permeate your home with beauty. Training the affections happens early, and we want to teach our kids to love that which is good, true, and beautiful from the very youngest of ages.

I will also be creating companion activities and lessons as the month goes on to highlight some of the pieces on the list – so check back!

You can find the April list on Spotify here. (Details on the JanuaryFebruary, and March lists if you want to catch up!)

(Spotify note: You do not have to be a paid member to access the list – you can set up a free Spotify account that allows you to listen with ads. FYI -with the free version, only shuffle play is allowed on mobile devices. If you use an actual computer, you can choose individual songs. My Spotify user name is kristihillmusic – just sign up and search my username to access the playlists.)

Ok, let’s get to this month’s list! It’s a combination of Easter-oriented oratorios, springtime themes, and a nod to Napoleon. Ready?

Flight of the Bumbleebee // Rimsky-Korsakov

This is one of my very favorite pieces for children. It is super short and super easy for kids to catch what the music is intended to represent…the buzzing bumblebee. There couldn’t be a simpler piece to get kids interested in classical music!

Messiah (Easter) // Handel

Most people think of the “Hallelujah Chorus” as the culmination of Handel’s most famous work, but it is really just the end of Act II. The real end comes here – the finale of entire work. 

Easter Oratorio (Sinfonia) // Bach

Bach’s more famous Easter work is the St. Matthew Passion, but I tend to not teach it because it is a little heavy for children. I like the Easter Oratorio – particularly the Sinfonia I have included here. It is joyful Baroque at it’s best. 

Hallelujah from “Mount of Olives” // Beethoven

This is Beethoven’s only oratorio, and it was only moderately received at the time. Much of the work centers around Christ in the Garden of Gethsemane. For children, the Hallelujah is great piece – it has buoyant quality kids enjoy. 

Daisies // Rachmaninoff

I like to include vastly different pieces of music on each playlist so children’s ears can learn to differentiate between different types of music. This piece skews a little into the jazz world and makes me think of easy, breezy spring days.

Appalachian Spring // Copland

Oh how much I love this piece! Copland took the Appalachian melody Simple Gifts and incorporated it into this work. So beautiful and one of my all-time favorites. 

Thunder and Lightning Polka // Strauss

Strauss made an appearance on both the January list (Voices of Spring Waltz) and the March list (Voices of Spring Waltz). He was the it composer of the day when it came to party music. For real. 

Flower Duet // Delibes

This piece is used quite often in commercials and movies – I bet you will recognize it. It’s an opera scene where the two main characters go gather flowers by the river. A fun one to act out!

Symphony #3 “Eroica” // Beethoven

This piece made the list because it premiered on April 7th, 1805. It has a great historical back story that involved Beethoven dedicating the piece to Napoleon, then rescinding his dedication later on, when things got complicated. Politics, you know.  #nothingnewunderthesun 

An American in Paris // Gershwin

Finally, a piece in honor of everyone’s dream to visit Paris in the springtime (or is that just me?). Picture yourself strolling by the Eiffel tower, eating a croissant, all to the tune of one of Gershwin’s best. 

It’s going to be a great month of music lessons! Check back next week and will get started with lessons. For now, grab the playlist here and infuse your home with great music!

Kristi

My Top 10 Favorite Peaceful Classical Music Pieces

I hope you have had a chance to check out the March playlist! Head back to yesterday’s post on Beethoven’s Pastoral Symphony for an easy, weather related music lesson. Yes, weather. Check it out.

I wanted to pop in for a quick post to let you know about another playlist on my Spotify account you might want to add to your listening rotations. Find it here. It’s titled “Peaceful Classical,” and it’s probably the music I listen to most.

There is so much research about how calming music is for the physical body. I am taking notes as I read and plan to write a longer post when I can wrap my head around more of the details. It’s super fascinating…lower cortisol, higher dopamine, etc. Amazing! (This article is super interesting.)

The implications for children are really powerful. I’m no scientist, but I experiment in my classroom all the time. When the energy gets high, I sometimes allow my students to lay on the floor and listen to one of these pieces (with the lights off). It’s an incredibly powerful calming tool.

Creating peaceful spaces for our children is so important in this current age of hyper-stimulation. Teaching them to be still and just breathe is a skill that will serve them well into adulthood.

I think music can help.

Try having a “Lay Down and Listen” moment each day using one of these pieces. See if it helps calm your kids in anxious moments. Teach them to breathe slowly and relax their physical bodies. It’s like giving their little brains a warm bath.

If you aren’t a Spotify person at all, I will give you this little nugget, which happens to be my favorite on the list. I often listen to it over and over when I am writing. It’s normally played with the violin as the primary instrument, but this version features Yo-Yo Ma on the cello, which makes it more mellow. #rhymeforthewin

Enjoy!

Kristi

P.S. I can’t resist. Here’s another favorite:

Seasonal Classical Music Playlists for Your Homeschool: March

***********UPDATE***********

Lessons from the March Playlist:

*******************************

This is a continuing series I hope will be helpful in getting great classical music in your kids’ ears. Each month I am posting a playlist that will either reflect the mood of the season or highlight music-related historical events. Mostly I just want to help you create an ever-changing classical music soundtrack that will permeate your home with beauty. Training the affections happens early, and we want to teach our kids to love that which is good, true, and beautiful from the very youngest of ages.

I will also be creating companion activities and lessons as the month goes on to highlight some of the pieces on the list – so check back!

You can find the March list on Spotify here. (Details on the January and February lists if you want to catch up!)

(Spotify note: You do not have to be a paid member to access the list – you can set up a free Spotify account that allows you to listen with ads. FYI -with the free version, only shuffle play is allowed on mobile devices. If you use an actual computer, you can choose individual songs. My Spotify user name is kristihillmusic – just sign up and search my username to access the playlists.)

Ok, let’s get to this month’s list!

The Four Seasons (Spring) // Vivaldi

When you live in the south, the transition from winter to spring is fuzzy at best, especially this year. Nevertheless the real first day of spring falls in March. So, of course, the March playlist must kick off with the ultimate spring piece: Spring from Vivaldi’s The Four Seasons. I included Winter in the January list, and I can’t wait for your kids to hear Antonio’s ode to springtime. 

Symphony #101 (The Clock) // Haydn

The Clock is a clever little piece from Joseph Haydn. Your kids will be able to hear how the music sounds like a ticking clock. I included this one to coincide with the switch to Daylight Savings time on March 12. (The precise date at which it becomes impossible to get my kids to bed at a reasonable hour.)

Symphony #6 (Storm) // Beethoven

In honor of March roaring in like a lion, I’ve included Beethoven’s Storm from his Pastoral Symphony (also known as Symphony #6). Beethoven was a lover of nature, and he wrote the Pastoral Symphony to reflect it’s different facets. The Storm movement is great for kids because they can hear the difference between the storm and the sunshine. Lesson for this one coming later this week.

Spring Song // Sibelius 

Spring Song is another great piece for celebrating springtime’s arrival. There’s actually an incredible amount of classical music related to spring. So much that there will be several pieces included in the April and May playlists as well.

The Planets (Mars) // Holst

Mars from Gustav Holst is a nod to the origin of this month’s name. The Planets is a collection of music based off, well, the planets. I love studying this music with my older students because they often already know a lot about outer space. They are naturally able to make fun connections between the music and the solar system.

Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring // Bach

Happy birthday Mr. Bach! The greatest of the greats has yet to appear on a monthly playlist, and his birthday is the perfect reason to include good Johann here. Born March 21, 1685, Johann Sebastian Bach is considered the pinnacle, the tippy-top, the top dog of all classical composers. If you don’t know a single thing about classical music, I bet you still know this piece. 

Voices of Spring Waltz // Strauss

More spring music, this time a waltz. So much classical music was originally composed to give people dancing music. Not that different from today when you think about it!

Turkish March // Mozart

Wink, wink. See what I did there? A March for March. This is another piece you will recognize, even if you don’t think you know classical music at all. This is Mozart’s first appearance on a playlist. We are diving into the big guns this month. 

The William Tell Overture // Rossini

One of the most engaging pieces of classical music for children is Rossini’s William Tell Overture. It makes the list because of a significant historical event: it was the first piece of recorded music ever broadcast via radio, an event taking place on March 5, 1907. Pretty cool, huh? And Rossini himself was quite the character. At his height, he was basically the most famous musician on earth. He walked away from it all to become a foodie. For real. 

Londonderry Air (Danny Boy) // Traditional 

Finally, a little something for St. Patrick’s Day. There’s not much connection between Ireland and traditional classical music, but I couldn’t help but include this beautiful tune that has become so completely associated with the Land of the Leprechauns. It’s a gorgeous melody, and we will don our green and learn about it’s history this month.

I’m looking forward to diving into this list! We’ll start Thursday so don’t forget to check back!

Happy listening,

Kristi

 

Seasonal Classical Music Playlists for Your Homeschool: February

***Update***

Here are links to lessons from this playlist:

 

This is a continuing series I hope will be helpful in getting great classical music in your kids’ ears. Each month I am posting a playlist that will either reflect the mood of the season or highlight music-related historical events. Mostly I just want to help you create an ever-changing classical music soundtrack that will permeate your home with beauty. Training the affections happens early, and we want to teach our kids to love that which is good, true, and beautiful from the very youngest of ages.

I will also be creating companion activities and lessons as the month goes on to highlight some of the pieces on the list – so check back!

You can find the February list on Spotify here. (Details on the January list here if you want to catch up on that one!)

(Spotify note: You do not have to be a paid member to access the list – you can set up a free Spotify account that allows you to listen with ads. FYI -with the free version, only shuffle play is allowed on mobile devices. If you use an actual computer, you can choose individual songs. My Spotify user name is kristihillmusic – just sign up and search my username to access the playlists.)

Ok, let’s get to this month’s list!

The February list highlights lots of love, some unrequited love, a nod to President’s Day, and a piece from a game-changing African-American composer in honor of Black History month.

Let’s Get Started!

Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini // Sergei Rachmaninoff

February means Valentine’s Day and all things romance. And when I think of a piece of purely romantic sounding music, this is the one that comes to mind. (If you are a child of the ’80s like I am, you might remember a little cheese-fest of a film called Somewhere in Time, starring Jane Seymour and Christopher Reeve. It has the best soundtrack ever, and it makes great use of this piece from Sergei Rachmaninoff…himself quite the tragic figure, but we will get to that later in the month.) This piece practically aches with romantic longing. Lush and sweeping. One of my favorites.

Romeo and Juliet Love Theme // Peter Tchaikovsky

And speaking of aching, how about the most tragic of all tragic love stories? The subject of writers, composers, and artists through the ages – William Shakespeare’s ill-fated couple, Romeo and Juliet. I chose Tchaikovsky’s love theme for our February list.

Nessun Dorma // Giacomo Puccini

One of the most famous opera arias of all time, Puccini’s Calaf has fallen head-over-heels in love with the captivating — but aloof — Princess Turdandot. He must win her love through great effort (and clever problem solving!), and his commitment is reflected in this heart-wrenching cry of love. (I have included both the instrumental and the vocal version in the playlist.)

Pas de Deux from “The Nutcracker” // Peter Tchaikovsky

There is so much great music from The Nutcracker. We won’t have room for all of it in December, so I plucked this romantic piece out for our February list. This is the moment when the Sugar Plum Fairy dances with the Prince. Dreamy.

Salut d’Amour // Edward Elgar

Edward Elgar is best known for a little piece heard at graduations around America called Pomp and Circumstance. But Salut D’Amour is pretty famous as well, and it was originally written as an engagement present for Edward’s true love, Alice. Swoon.

Wedding Day at Troldhaugen // Edvard Grieg

From Edward Elgar to Edvard Grieg and more love stories. Troldhaugen is the name of the Grieg family home (now a tourist attraction for Norway’s favorite composer). This piece was written as a 25th anniversary gift to his wife Nina.

Sleeping Beauty // Peter Tchaikovsky

By now you might be noticing the February list is a little heavy on Tchaikovsky. You are right, and that’s because I love him. Sleeping Beauty is not as well known as Swan Lake or The Nutcracker, but the music is epic. I have included the Waltz in this list — surprise, that’s classical music, not a Disney song! (The words were added for the 1959 movie.)

O Soave Fanciulla // Giacomo Puccini

Tchaikovsky is to Romantic ballet as Puccini is to Romantic Opera. (That’s an analogy I can get behind.) This epic ballad is the love duet between Rodolfo and Mimi in La Bohème (which, incidentally, was the basis for the Broadway musical Rent). I’ve included both the instrumental and the vocal versions again, just in case operatic singing confuses your kids. (It’s okay, it confuses adults too.)

Lincoln Portrait // Aaron Copland

Copland was commissioned to create a work of music celebrating a great American, and he chose the great Abraham Lincoln. Copland’s Lincoln Portrait premiered in 1942. The piece included portions of Lincoln’s writings read aloud throughout the work. It is an all-American work from an all-American composer, in honor of President’s Day.

The Entertainer // Scott Joplin

Scott Joplin was a music pioneer in the 1800s, and I included him on the February list to help your kids celebrate Black History month. Western culture being what it is, there are not many African-American composers in traditional music history, but Joplin is definitely one to know. He developed the entire style of music now known as ragtime, and The Entertainer is his most famous piece. Children love it!

 

Lessons to come starting later this week – for now, happy listening!

Kristi

 

 

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{Music Lessons for Kids} The Skater’s Waltz // Waldteufel

One of my goals as a music teacher-turned-blogger is to make classical music super accessible for everyone. Great classical music doesn’t have to be intimidating or confusing, and YOU are fully capable of teaching your kids great music – even if you aren’t the slightest bit musical yourself.

Last week I introduced my January playlist to help you infuse your home with seasonal classical music, and today I’m starting a new Mini-Lesson Monday series to help you begin incorporating this great music into your day – in an accessible way

THE SKATER’S WALTZ

French composer Émile Waldteufel’s The Skater’s Waltz was written in 1882 to capture the feel of a wintery day of ice skating. The melody has a swirling quality that is intended to evoke a skater circling the ice.

Don’t tell your kids anything about the music, just have it playing while you do other work. You can find the Spotify list here (track #1) or use this Youtube video:

Once your child is familiar with the music, have them do some musical sketching to see what they come up with.

When they are finished, tell them a bit about the piece and what the composer intended listeners to hear. Have them listen again. Any change in what comes to mind?

I hope the January playlist is filling your home with great music. I’ll be back later in the week with another lesson.

Happy listening!

Kristi

 

 

Seasonal Classical Music Playlists for Your Homeschool: January

***************

UPDATE:

Find lessons for the January Playlist here:

***************

I am beginning a new series that I hope will be helpful in getting great classical music in your kids’ ears. Each month I will post a playlist that will either reflect the mood of the season or highlight music-related historical events. Mostly I just want to help you create an ever-changing classical music soundtrack that will permeate your home with beauty. Training the affections happens early, and we want to teach our kids to love that which is good, true, and beautiful from the very youngest of ages.

I will also be creating some companion activities and lessons as the month goes on to highlight some of the pieces on the list – so check back!

You can find January’s list on Spotify here.

(You do not have to be a paid member to access the list – you can set up a free account that allows you to listen with ads. With the free version of Spotify, only shuffle play is allowed on mobile devices. If you use an actual computer, you can choose individual songs.)

Ok, let’s get to this month’s list!

 

The Skater’s Waltz // Émile Waldteufel

This piece was inspired by a skating rink in Paris, and it might sound familiar to you because it’s been used in lots of movies and television shows (including Rose’s coming-out ball in London in season 4 of Downton Abbey). It’s elegant and majestic.

 

Winter Dreams Symphony // Peter Tchaikovsky

This is Tchaikovsky’s first symphony (and not at all the most famous of his works). It is intended to evoke images of bleak winter, and this portion highlights the transition to spring (around the three minute mark).

 

Winter from The Four Seasons // Antonio Vivaldi

A cup of hot cocoa and a warm blanket is all you need to fully absorb the coziness of this piece. Listen for the instruments replicating a cold, dripping rain on the roof.

 

Sinfonia Antarctica // Ralph Vaughn Williams

Originally written as a movie soundtrack, Vaughn Williams liked what he wrote so much he evolved it into a symphony. The movie told the story of an ill-fated expedition, and the music is fittingly dramatic.

 

The Snow is Dancing // Claude Debussy

This piece is a part of a children’s collection written for Debussy’s three-year-old daughter. Kid’s music has certainly changed over the years!

 

In the Bleak Midwinter // Holst

Although this is a Christmas carol, I am including it here for a couple of reasons. First, the melody is so delicate it makes me think of those slightly melancholy days after the holidays are over. Plus, there is so much great music for our December list I was afraid there wouldn’t be room for this little gem.

 

Winterlust Polka // Josef Strauss

This was the popular dancing music of it’s day. That’s right – dancing music. Put it on when you need to break up an indoor day with a little classical music dance party.

 

Waltz of the Snowflakes // Peter Tchaikovsky

From The Nutcracker, this is another piece I thought might get left off a December list. It isn’t as famous as Waltz of the Flowers, but it is just as beautiful — and very wintery.

 

The Snow Maiden Suite // Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov

This opera, Rimsky-Korsakov’s favorite, tells the story of the half-mythical Snow Maiden who melts when true love reveals the sun.

 

The Man from Snowy River Concert Suite // Bruce Rowland

I’m not that precious about how I define classical music, and I think certain recent movie scores are glorious additions to lists like this one. The Man from Snowy River is one of my favorite soundtracks.

 

Access the Spotify list here to start listening to all this wintery classical music goodness. And then come back Tuesday for ideas about how to make this music come to life for your children!

 

Happy listening!

Kristi