Sergei Prokofiev: Peter and the Wolf and More

Composer Study Sergei Prokofiev @harmonyfinearts

I have had a huge attraction to the music of Sergei Prokofiev for about two years now. I was blessed to go and see the ballet Romeo and Juliet in San Francisco. It was the first time that I had ever seen a full-scale ballet done by a professional company along with the live orchestra. It was the most awesome experience…I didn’t want to leave. Dance of the Knights is outstanding. Here is a link that you can get a taste of it:
Dance of the Knights

This started my fascination with Prokofiev’s music. I had heard and shared with my children many times the music and story of Peter and the Wolf. If you haven’t shared this with your family, I highly recommend finding the book and music at your library. It is very enjoyable to listen to and your children will soon learn to pick out each of the instruments and characters they portray.

I also recommend seeing if you can find the music that Prokofiev wrote for Romeo and Juliet and Cinderella. These are two of my favorites and I play them often.

Here are some links to Amazon for CDs that I own.

Bernstein Favorites Children’s Classics: Carnival of Animals-Peter and the Wolf-Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra

The Best of Prokofiev


Watch Dance of the Knights on YouTube –your kids will love it!

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Harmony Fine Arts Grade 8

Sergei Prokofiev is part of the plans for Harmony Fine Arts Grade 8.

Dover Coloring Books-Book Review

Dover Coloring Books for 20th Century History @harmonyfinearts
Dover Publications coloring books are a great addition to our school day. We enjoy using the various themed coloring books for just about every subject that we study.

This year we are looking into 20th century history so we have used coloring books to supplement our study.

Here’s some of the titles we have used so far:

  • Classic Motorcars
  • Story of World War II
  • Airplanes of the Second World War
  • History of Space Exploration

For our art study we have used:

  • Color Your Own Matisse
  • Color Your Own Monet
  • Art Masterpieces to Color
  • Color Your Own Gauguin

I like these coloring books because along with the image to color with colored pencils or markers, there is a narrative that basically tells the story of the images. They are so much more than coloring books. We will cut them out of the book and use them in our notebooks or in the case of the Monet shown in this blog, I will mount it and hang it up on the wall.

Well that is your tip for this week on how to include some sort of art in your homeschooling. I encourage you to go the Dover Publications website and sign up for their free weekly sampler. They send you various coloring book samples each Friday for you to print out and share with your children. They also offer loads of stickers, activity books, reasonably priced paperback books for all ages, and art prints. You can go to my website and click on your child’s grade level and then go to the materials lists that are links to Amazon. I have included many, many Dover Publications selections in my art and music appreciation plan.

Here is another blog entry I wrote about Dover Coloring Books: My View on Art Appreciation using Dover Coloring Books

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Composer of the Month: Maurice Ravel

Maurice Ravel Composer Study @harmonyfinearts
This month we are listening to a new composer. This is our first time to experience Ravel and that is always a challenge. I find I like composers more after I have listened to their works several times. It is as if your ear needs to grow accustomed to the sounds and rhythms and styles of each composer before your brain will embrace it. Ravel’s Bolero has become my favorite walking music for my time on the treadmill. The way it gets louder and faster and more intense works perfectly for my workout.

Here is some information on Ravel as background for you and your children. I have included a lesson plan that I found but please be aware that I have not used it yet. I am going to use it with the boys next week.

Maurice Ravel
French composer of the 20th Century

Link to short biography for your notebook

Link to a lesson plan for listening to and getting more out of Laideronette

We are studying Ravel on the heels of Debussy since Ravel was influenced greatly by Debussy. This more modern sounding music is very enjoyable and the boys are putting the music on more than any we have listened to this year. Mr. B says he likes the sound of it and he likes the violins.

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Link to hear samples of Ravel’s music:

As always, check your local library for CD’s that feature Ravel.


This composer is included in Harmony Fine Arts Grade 4 plans.

Harmony Fine Arts Grade 4 Art and Music Curriculum

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