How to Do a Composer Study
One facet of a Charlotte Mason education is the composer study. Depending on your knowledge and love of music you may be excited about this or quite nervous. For anyone worried, don’t be. Anyone can engage a child in a full and rich composer study regardless of your background in music. In fact, you may find you enjoy it as much as the children.
If you are familiar with the Charlotte Mason method then think of a composer study with the same ease as art appreciation or nature study. The intent is to share the beauty and evoke a curiosity about music through famous composers. It is a time of exploration and low stress learning which again makes it easy for anyone to implement into her homeschool.
How do I Choose a Composer to Study?
You can begin by choosing a composer you are familiar with or your child shows an interest in learning about. You can also choose a composer based on the time period you are studying. Choosing a composer to integrate with your history will enhance your child’s feel for the time period.
How do I Implement a Composer Study in My Homeschool?
Choose one composer per 9 to 12-week term. The bulk of your study will be listening to the composer’s music to get a feel for style. You can purchase CDs or download music onto a device. You and your children can listen while riding in the car, during art, or just in the background of your home. However, it is important to take ten to fifteen minutes to focus on sitting and listening. Focusing solely on music will aid in teaching the habit of attentiveness and observation. If your child is fidgety during this time, it is ok to allow the child to play with blocks or another quiet activity after a few minutes. The goal is to engage your child in the music and develop an appreciation for it.
To aid in your study you can add in documentaries, biographies, notebooking pages, and books. If your child becomes interested in a particular instrument, then take the time to study it. If a musical style strikes an interest, you can continue to study along those lines as opposed to following a historical time line. Enjoy your composer study and watch your children develop a love and appreciation for classical music.