Inside you’ll find: picture books about composers, full of living ideas perfect for a Charlotte Mason picture study.
Have you ever met a person that hated all types of music?
Yeah, me either.
Unfortunately, I know far too many people that don’t appreciate classical music.
Maybe because they weren’t exposed to it at a young age. Maybe because they don’t know the magical true stories behind the compositions.
These eleven picture books about composers will tell a story that will make the music come to life and touch your soul.
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Becoming Bach by Tom Leonard is gorgeously illustrated and pulls even the youngest readers in. It tells about the driving passion for music that Johann Sebastian Bach had from a very young age.
Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue by Anna Harwell Celenza It always fun to introduce kids to more modern composers who blazed incredible trails. This book captures the genius behind the creation of some truly American music, “Rhapsody in Blue”.
Beethoven’s Heroic Symphony (Once Upon a Masterpiece) by Anna Harwell Celenza A fascinating look at the politics and personal struggles behind Beethoven’s third symphony, originally written for Napoleon. Beethoven is a kid favorite for his larger than life personality.
Hallelujah Handel by Douglas Cowling A sweet story about Handel rescuing a orphan boy who never speaks, but sure can sing! Wonderful around Christmas time as you listen to Handel’s iconic “Messiah”.
A lovely story about what inspired Dvorak’s writing of the American Quartet. This book was such an eye opener for me! We’d been listening to Dvorak for a couple weeks, but my boys were not enthusiastic. Then I found this book, and in true Charlotte Mason fashion, the living books and living ideas became theirs and BAM! they found they loved Dvorak.
Beethoven Lives Upstairs by Barbara Nichol When Beethoven moves to the apartment above Christoph’s family, things are anything but quiet. The friendship that ensues is magical!
Tchaikovsky Discovers America by Esther Kalman When Tchaikovsky visits the new world, he meets a little girl named Jenny Petroff who shares many of his same interests. Parts of his actual diary are dispersed throughout the book.
Duke Ellington’s Nutcracker Suite by Anna Harwell Celenza This one is fun to pair with the Tchaikovsky book. When Ellington endeavors to turn a classical ballet into a jazz piece, most people (including his band members) are skeptical. But the results are magic!
The Farewell Symphony by Anna Harwell Celenza This book explains (with some fictionalized details) the hilarious story behind Haydn’s Farewell Symphony. My boys were rolling on the floor laughing, and there’s no way they’ll soon forget this piece!
I, Vivaldi by Janice Jordan Shefelman A fun book that tells of the struggles Vivaldi had as he tried to please his mother while following his dream to be a musician. Also a lovely peek into Venice.
Vivaldi’s Four Seasons by Anna Harwell Celenza A great in depth look at Vivaldi’s most famous piece, the four seasons. Join the girls from the orphanage as they bring their teacher’s (Vivaldi’s) composition to life. It will be impossible not to picture the stunning outdoor scenes as you listen to the four section of the piece. (CD included).