While picture study and Shakespeare (the two other courses we’re using SCM products to study) have been fantastic, we don’t seem to be getting anywhere with Music Study.
Perhaps I shouldn’t compare the three? Maybe since Music Study is to take twice as long, our progress should feel slower?
With Picture Study each week my daughter’s interest grows (even though I padded the earlier weeks with what I thought she would think the best works) and her descriptions get more detailed. Her narration (we chose to read the story several weeks in, after she had formed a bit of a relationship with the artist through his work) was spot on and thorough.
She is smitten with Shakespeare and prolongs our lesson each week- after reading along with the recommended audio we go through several reenactments. So fun!
But with Music we flounder. There’s no relationship, no interest. Even occasional eye-roll and dragged feet. She doesn’t mind as much (5th week) when I play it in the background as we drive or go about our day- but I feel it’s mostly tuned out. Perhaps she comes by it naturally. We are not a particularly musical family (though her older brother is) and we are far, far away (rural northwest Texas) from any classical music culture- our town has never even had a school orchestra.
She started ballet this fall, and that has left her more open to the music. And we’ve also begun piano. I’ve asked her dad to cut out the modern pop music they would drive around and listen to while checking crops and cattle. Maybe I just haven’t given it enough time. Looking for encouragement, I guess.BeckyParticipant
I think maybe just giving it more time. It may also be the particular composer you are studying right now. When it’s time to move to another composer, their style of music may be more appealing. And, she may never really care for it, but she’s getting some exposure to it & I think that’s a good thing. 🙂
If it’s possible for you to find any of the Classical Kids Cds (Mr. Bach Comes to Call, Beethoven Lives Upstairs, Vivaldi’s Ring of Mystery and others), they are worth the time and money. They are dramatized stories with lots of music and are really interesting, well done (a bit corny in spots, but nothing harmful), and engaging. If your daughter is between about 6-12, they might increase her interest in classical music.
Or study a different style of music – world music, jazz, soundtracks, something besides classical. Just by listening to different styles, music literacy and interest can grow and blossom.Paula SpicerParticipant
My kids beat their head against the wall when we study classical music as well. So…I just don’t do it. They love bluegrass and old time music so we listen to it, play it, sing it, perform it.
Yes, I know they should learn to appreciate classical. However, I pick my battles and this is not one of them. Besides, who doesn’t love a true Appalachian mountain music!
Preach, Paula! I totally agree.AmandaParticipant
We struggle with this as well. Classical music is just not loved by my children. I’m perfectly fine with that. We are all created with our own preferences. There are certainly types of music that I don’t enjoy so I can’t expect them to be any different. I will still expose them to the major, well know composers though.
Looks like my phone are my earlier response to everyone. I appreciate you all. I’ll try to respond again when I have more time. Thank you!
Opal Wheeler biographies, picture book stories of the composer, and Classical Kids CDs can REALLY help a child connect with the composer!!MichelleParticipant
We keep it simple and not really as a “study”. We listen to an artist during down times, or while I am cooking and they are cleaning up. Sometimes we will read a picture book and they enjoy learning something interesting (Like Beethoven’s fat fingers).
And yes, there are artists they really don’t care for (Chopin for example)…
You may watch Fantasia with them, it is such a fun way to open them up to amazing classical music.
Mainly, don’t force it. It is a living education, so just find a way to simply weave it into your day and sometimes they will say “I know that song!”
– Or they will say “awe man, this is boring, can you put on Beethoven” which is still a win to me haha.
Thank you all for your encouragement and understanding.
We’re pressing on and I have to say the idea that exposure breeds taste is proving true. We’re not fans of every song (yet) but some are now profoundly beautiful to us. (Obviously so. How did we miss that before?) As for the ones that aren’t- we think about how exciting they must have been to listeners at the time. Friday night after our nature walk we opened all the windows and moonroof of my car as we crept down the lane leading out of our farm (headed home). My daughter stood on the console in what must have been a Queen of the world moment for her. I keep one of our music study CDs in the car and it was playing. I cannot put into words what the combination of the countryside at sunset, night breeze, and some song* of Bach’s felt like to us. I hope I don’t forget it.
Perhaps we’ll overcome our awkwardness with the subject and learn to appreciate it on a somewhat intellectual level someday. I’d love to be able to recognize different pieces, but right now even their titles are like Greek to me. But I’m okay with that for now.
* See what I mean? I have no idea which one was playing and doubtless would have little chance of knowing it was Bach’s had I heard it mixed in among other composers. I may or may not be able to recognize a piece of artwork we haven’t studied as being Durer- but I’d certainly recognize one of the ones we did study. I guess I expected to be able to do the same with music, we’re putting ever so much more time in it.
Thanks again, all!MichelleParticipant
If it makes you feel better, I can’t actually name MODERN artists or the name of their songs, even if I can sing the entire song 🙂 If my kids can hum along, but are not quite sure who composed the peice, I am ok. They did make a connection once when Pandora threw in a different song on our Bach station, and the kids immediately recognized it as as Vivaldi, but could not name it.
“The question is not, — how much does the youth know? when he has finished his education — but how much does he care? and about how many orders of things does he care? In fact, how large is the room in which he finds his feet set? and, therefore, how full is the life he has before him?” -CM
I have so much to say and am deeply loving this discussion, but I will have to wait because I’m on my way out. But I had to say: Michelle, part of what I was going to say in my post is the very quote you included, which is my favorite CM quote and philosophy. *enthusiastic cheering*totheskydearParticipant
Look up “Muppets Rudolph Nureyev” on YouTube. After watching it and cracking up, wait a couple days and put on “Swan Lake” and puzzle aloud, “Wow, this music sure sounds familiar…”
Just a quick update to say we are pressing on with Charlotte Mason style composer study. Today we started Tchaikovsky. I had a cd playing in the background and then later played a few online clips, none of which were the nutcracker. Her observation, “They sound similar to the Nutcracker.”
I’ll file that under It’s Working!
She also pointed out to me that the opening music to her Math U See lessons is Bach. I haven’t checked to be sure, but it’s evidence that she’s tuned in more than I realized.
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