At the beginning of the school year, I volunteered to be the music docent for Natalie’s Kindergarten class. Once a week, we sing, move, and play instruments together for 30 minutes. One of the objectives for the year is recognizing some common orchestra instruments by sight and sound. The kids are so interested in learning about the orchestra and listening to classical pieces. They are starting to identify individual instruments while listening to the music, which is so neat! I gathered and sampled a lot of resources while prepping for my lessons, so I thought I would share them with you!
Meet the Orchestra by Ann Hayes
Musical Instruments A to Z by Bobbie Kalman
Pecorino’s First Concert by Alan Madison
Zin! Zin! Zin! A Violin by Lloyd Moss
Books with CDs
These sites have interactive features and instrument sound samples for kids.
- San Francisco Symphony Kids
- New York Philharmonic – Instrument Locker Room
- Classics for Kids
- Dallas Symphony Orchestra
If you haven’t tried the Beethoven’s Wig CDs, you should! We borrow them from the library all the time – I probably should break down and buy a set of our own. They have funny lyrics set to well-known classical pieces – my girls and all the Kindergarteners *adore* them!
Here are the “core” classical pieces we listen to in Kindergarten – I usually download individual pieces from iTunes:
- Selections from Peer Gynt (Grieg) - Morning and In the Hall of the Mountain King
- March of the Toys from Babes in Toyland (Herbert)
- Nutcracker Suite (Tchaikovsky)
- March of the Siamese Children from The King and I (Rodgers)
- Carnival of the Animals (Saint-Saens)
My girls love to get out their musical instruments and dance or march around the room to orchestra music. We talk about making a steady beat, whether the tempo is fast or slow, and name as many instruments as we can. They also like to take turns being the conductor!
Any little instrument and orchestra enthusiasts at your house? I’d love to hear your favorites ideas and resources, too!