20 May 2008

Music for the Play-Doh hour

Some selections for the family with a mom who loves her kids enough to spend every waking moment with them (and quite a few sleeping ones), but not enough to listen to Baby Beluga.

1. Nothing new here, but this particular CD has Peter and the Wolf, Carnival of Animals, and A Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra, so I give it a Good Value award.

2. We have two so far from the Classical Kids series and like them both. The Bach one has a nice, if truncated, Wir Eilen in English. I'm not crazy for the Papagena/Papageno translation on Mozart's Magic Fantasy, but that's my only objection (the Queen of the Night's hellish wrath is toned down for the young'uns).

3. The productions in the An Introduction to the Classics series aren't as imaginative as Classical Kids. They just go through the lives of the composers, but they are still engaging and have lots of good music, and the kids like the one we have. Papa Haydn was a funny dude; who knew? Best of all, they are crazy cheap--$2.98 each!

And unrecommended, IMHO, is the Sing Along Symphony series. I don't want stupid words to plague me all of my days when I hear these timeless masterpieces (and again, my ability to tolerate the music is the most important thing here). I'm confident the kids will be able to put names to compositions later in life without gimmicks.


Glenda said...

"I don't want stupid words to plague me all of my days when I hear these timeless masterpieces (and again, my ability to tolerate the music is the most important thing here)"

I use to think this of the cd "Beethoven's Wig." The kids loved the silly words to the classics, I thought it awful. Until the day we had classical music on in the background and the youngest began singing and knew exactly who and what, and it inspired dd #2 to play Hayden's Great Surprise Symphony (okay a easy beginning one, but still!) for piano. I gave it another shot (we borrow it from the library) and now it has grown on me and I kinda like it and *I'm* finally learning this which I never did before.

One of our favorite kid fun songs cd's are by Ralph's World. (www.ralphsworld.com). They are simply fun. We own "At the bottom of the Sea" and the kids regularly borrow others (another favorite is "Peggy's Pie Parlor Polka")from the library. They are definitely good for silly times when mom and kids need to just let loose and dance around the house.

Glenda said...

Duh - see how dumb I am? I didn't even remember that the Sing Along Symphony was Beethoven's Wig until I checked. I suppose from now on I should do such things. Sheesh.

Rebekah said...

Glenda, you're such a good mom! I have never in my life felt any need to let loose and dance around the house with the kids. I'm silly-impaired. :P

Kristi Heinz said...

I believe the Suzuki series of listening cd's are wonderful. I prefer the piano versions that were recorded by Dr. Kataoka. She passed away a few years ago, but they are remarkable. We listened to them for years.

I teach music to fifth and sixth graders, which my son is, and I compiled a cd with songs from 15 of the greats throughout the years. Everyone was given a cd, and they had several weeks to listen to it. My son listened to it a few times. I would encourage him to listen more, but he would be busy with something else. I didn't often think of just randomly putting it on. Test day came. They had to list the title and composer for each song. He aced it. I was shocked. I believe it had to do with all that early listening in his life. Keep playing your music! It just changes them! Now, he listens to a song and says, "Wow, that sounds like Gershwin, or do you think that is a Chopin?" I love music!

Rebekah said...

Those sound great! I'll have to check them out.