Music Study (aka Composer Study), Part 1

As we have prayed and pondered ways to help our children have a broad education that spreads the feast of noble, living ideas and increases their testimony of the Savior, we came across this:

“A man should hear a little music, read a little poetry, and see a fine picture every day of his life, in order that worldly cares may not obliterate the sense of the beautiful which God has implanted in the human soul.” 

–Goethe

I love this quote!

It literally gives depth to some of the subjects we have chosen to do in our  education for life – including Picture Study, Music Study, Nature Study, Hymn Study,  Poetry, and Shakespeare.

Why Music Study?

Charlotte Mason talks about the importance of learning to play the piano (or other instrument) and singing in her writings.  In Home Education (volume 1), she explains that children should learn from artists first – lovers of their work – so that they can learn to appreciate it as beautiful.  By doing this, the motivation for learning is increased.

Listening to beautiful uplifting music can open our hearts and minds to the Spirit, which leads us on the path to better things…it helps us to learn to cultivate a sensitive awareness of our surroundings.  Once we have learned to appreciate awareness, we literally can take it and share it with others in our own talents and personality.

We are doing two types of Music Study in our home.

1. The mechanical learning of playing a note, learning to read music, and singing.

2.  Composer Study where we listen to a CD of the world’s most well-known classical music for a 6-8 week period, learning to recognize the composer’s signature pieces and style.

An added bonus to Music Study is that  studies have conclusively shown that classical music can take an over-stimulated brain and bring it to a resting state where a person is able to function in a more normal manner.  In other words, for my daughter with the Auditory Processing Disorder, listening to this music is theraputic, relaxing, and allows her to calmly access and process information in her brain – giving her much higher chances of retaining that information.

We play deliberately choose to play classical music during math for that reason. 😉  And who doesn’t need to feel peace and calm in their day???

Happy Listening!

This is the first in a series of posts covering Music Study…stayed tuned!

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9 thoughts on “Music Study (aka Composer Study), Part 1

  1. Mary Jo Rasmussen

    I read this quote on your wall many times – even the idea of doing those things was uplifting. And then I looked around and could see the picture … I looked at many of them very carefully and enjoyed them very much! I often get out the little book of poems that Bea put together for me and I read them all and feel better for having done it! I am having more trouble having the music…. but I always listen carefully when i am outside. There is music there too…. running water, finches, the wind in the birch tree.

    Reply
  2. sheraz2011 Post author

    Interesting that you should mention that – I just read an article on music from ehow.com – and the author was talking about how music has many different definitions for different people. She mentioned her children laughing, the sound of the wind in the trees…I think that there is much enjoyment in hearing the different sounds for myself. I enjoy the chattering birds and scolding squirrels, thunder in the distance, buzzing bees, the sounds of seeds in a dried up pod, the gurgle of the water over rocks, and my children enthused by all that…=) An interesting note about the music – particularly in the actual classical period – is how many composers tried to work the common sounds around them into their music. For instance, in his Four Seasons, Vivaldi worked in parts that were to sound like turtledoves and goldfinches, flashes of lightning, a barking dog, fierce winds, and chattering teeth. Knowing that somehow makes the music that much more magical. =)

    You also mentioned the Flight of the Bumblebee as a particularly good example of the music representing the sounds when we were talking. I enjoy that particular piece.

    Reply
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  4. Connie Yeates

    Music can be anything that makes a sound, I think. All of the things mentioned above fit my definition. I truly savor the sounds of nature when working in my garden and yard. When I asked the kids to help, they would insist on “music”. In retrospect, maybe that was a big reason I quit asking for help-it wasn’t nearly as rewarding to listen to complaints and the radio/cds. Hubby has a favorite guitarist who loves to work on his cars when not playing. He incorporated car/engine sounds into one of his pieces. That is a fun one to listen to. I LOVE Flight of the Bumblebee-especially after living out here and the huge bees that fly around here. I can so see him in my mind!

    Reply
  5. Brenda

    Great information on Music Study!!! I love how you have put together your blog. Thank you for helping me understand how you implement the Charlotte Mason method of teaching and ways that you implement her method! Thank you!

    Reply
    1. sheraz2011 Post author

      Oh, Brenda! Thank you for reading it, understanding it, and helping me out with all our enriching conversations and time together! I think that you are most definitely one of my Tender Mercies. =)

      Reply

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