Want to incorporate classical music appreciation as a weekly component in your homeschool schedule? Come check out my kid-friendly, easy-on-the-parents Music Curriculum. You can try a free sample lesson HERE.
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!
(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
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!