Composer Studies for the Very Young

Oct 15, 2013

This is Day #2 in my 10-day series, Composer Studies for Young Scholars

When my children were younger (up to age 7 or 8), we did composer studies exactly as Charlotte Mason explained. Although a very simple process, these studies stay with the children. They never seem to forget about the lives of these artists. Neither do they forget their music. It's an effective method.
How to conduct composer studies with a young homeschooling child.

Composer studies are actually a two-part lesson. There is studying the composer and then studying the compositions. The following explains how to do both.

Choose a composer.

First, choose a composer for the term (a Charlotte Mason term is 12 weeks) along with 6 of his compositions. 

Read books about the composer.

Choose a quality, living biography about the composer. Spend about 10 minutes reading 2 -3 times each week. 

Have the child narrate what was read.

Have the child narrate immediately afterward. The easiest is oral narration, but a very young child could draw picture and an older child could write a short narration. Notebooking pages {affiliate link} are helpful with the latter two choices. 

Conduct music studies.

You've chosen 6 musical pieces for the 12-week term. What do you do with them?

You will study one composition for two weeks. Prior to listening, remind them who the composer is and the title of the piece. 

Two or three times each week, have your child listen to a piece of the composition. Five minutes is ideal for this task. Have them really listen. Turn off the music and have your child narrate about what they heard. 

You may prompt with questions:
  • What did the music make you feel?
  • Do you think the person who wrote it was happy or sad when he wrote it?
  • What instruments did you hear?
  • Was the music fast or slow? 

The ideas for questions are endless. The point is to get your child to truly listen to the music. 

Summary of how to conduct a composer and music study.

  • Study the composer 2-3 times per week by reading, doing online activities or coloring pictures of the composer.
  • Study the music 2-3 times per week by listening to 5 minutes of a piece. Focus on that one composition for two weeks.

The schedule I follow is to read/study the composer on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Study the music on Tuesday and Thursday. 

Did you learn anything new here today? Do you have other ideas for composer studies? Share in the comments.

This series is a part of iHomeschool Network's Autumn Hopscotch 2013  
Brought to you by these great homeschool bloggers

Receive more articles like this one in your inbox!

Happy Homeschooling!

Post a Comment

Join the conversation!