July is here, and it’s time for our July listening lessons ideas!
Each month, I like to give a playlist of listening lesson ideas to coincide with that particular month. Today, I have a list of songs to add to your July listening lessons playlist, including special dates and a composer of the month. During the month of July, we have a few holidays. We start the month off with Canada Day (today!) and the Fourth of July.
This month, we say “happy birthday” to a couple well-known composers: Gustav Mahler (July 7th) and Carl Orff (July 10th). If you can’t find a composer you would like to feature, you can always use a favorite musician. I like to use a mix of modern and older musicians in class. Current musicians with July birthdays: Carlos Santana (July 20th), Woody Guthrie (July 14th), Linda Ronstadt (July 15th).
Once I have selected a featured musician/composer of the month, I go through each week, noting important celebrations or holidays. This month, there are a few:
Special days in July:
- Canada Day, July 1st
- Independence Day, July 4th
Suggested Playlist for July
- *Summer, Vivaldi’s Four Seasons (included in June’s playlist, as well, since summer began at the end of June)
- Yankee Doodle
- *The Star Spangled Banner (For Star Spangled banner activities, check out this post!)
- The Stars and Stripes Forever (John Philip Sousa)
- The Washington Post (John Philip Sousa)
- O Canada (Canada’s national anthem)
- Somewhere Out There, An American Tail (performed by Linda Ronstadt and James Ingram)
- This Land Is Your Land (Woody Guthrie)
- Symphony #2, Movement 1 (Gustav Mahler)
- O Fortuna, Carmina Burana (Carl Orff)
*I’ve included a couple pieces from June’s playlist in this month’s playlist
How to do a listening lesson
I would suggest playing the piece a few times. The first day, just play it once, having your children listen to the music. The next time you play, you can talk about what they hear in the music, and give background information on the music and the composer. You can also have them do an activity, like a listening log/journal, or draw a picture as they listen.
Hopefully, this gives you some fun ways to experience music together over this next month!