Organizing My Classical Music with Colored Dots – From My Archives
As you can imagine, I own a large number of classical music CDs. Between homeschooling my four children and researching and preparing the plans for Harmony Fine Arts, I have quite the collection.
Back in 2008 when I originally shared my tips for organizing music CDs, I had not yet made the leap to listening to music online using streaming or playlists. Things have changed! But, I thought I would repost this organizing idea just in case there are families that find themselves with a growing classical music CD collection.
As far as storage, I use the GNEDBY shelf from IKEA. It is large enough to hold even my huge collection of music! It historically sat right next to my science shelf (also from IKEA). Now I have it close to my desk so I can pop in a CD while I work.
Using Colored Dots to Organize Your Classical Music Collections
I tried organizing the CDs alphabetically but that soon fell apart as CDs were quickly re-shelved at the end of the week.
I came up with the idea for organizing the music into the four year cycles of history as explained in The Well-Trained Mind. I took my CDs and divided them up by composer time period. I took some colored dots that I had from the office supply store and gave each time period a different color.
Here is my colored dot system:
Medieval-early Renaissance 400-1600 =red dot
Late Renaissance-early Modern 1600-1850 =green dot
Modern -blue dot
Now all I had to do was to go through and look at the composer’s dates, adhere a dot to the outside spine of the CD case, and then group like colors on the shelf.
Sometimes the dots don’t stick very well so I go back with a colored Sharpie and just make a dot on the spine of the CD case.
This has saved me loads of time over the years. I could usually remember a composer’s time period and then scan the CDs with the appropriate dot on the spine. It’s a simple system that works for our family. Even if the CDs get mixed up on the shelf, I can easily shuffle them around back into some sort of order within a minute or two.
Note I use Amazon affiliate links in this entry to products I use and recommend.
More Classical Music Tips
Build Your Classical Music Library – This page shares my tips for building a basic classical music library for your family.
Learn About Composers the Easy Way – This post shares a valuable music appreciation resource that I have used in my own family and in the Harmony Fine Arts plans.
Are you looking for premade plans for listening to composers by time period? I invite you to take a look at my Harmony Fine Arts program to see if it’s a good fit for your family. There are sample weeks under the “sample” tab on the website. You can also download a chart that gives you more details about composers included in each year plan.
Overview Chart -grades 1-12 general descriptions
Artist & Composer List – Grades 1-4 – specific artists and composers
Artist & Composer List – Grades 5-8 – specific artists and composers