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Color the Classics Composers II Book and CD Review by Kate Kessler

Carmen Ziarkowski

When my daughter saw this book she picked it right up and started coloring! She was excited and I could see why. Color the Classics is such a nice way to introduce important composers to your children. Composers II details the lives of Georg Philipp Telemann, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Felix Mendelssohn, and Antonin Dvorak in a manner I have not seen done before. Beginning with a "How to Use" section we then moved onto a biography of Georg Philipp Telemann. Throughout the biography are notes that tell you which illustration, on the following pages, pertains to that part of the narrative. Then along the side-bar of the biography pages are definitions and explanations of various words or concepts used within the page. For example, the first page of Teleman's biography describes his early learning and his mother's distaste for music. It then goes on to tell us about Teleman entering the upper level school and meeting his roommate who had many musical friends. "He opened the door and what did he see. A room full of instruments." The corresponding picture is Teleman opening the door to find a room full of instruments. It is nicely drawn, not too detailed and not too easy - a good balance for children who like to color coloring books, but like interesting subjects to color.

What makes this program different is that it comes with a CD of the composers you are studying to play when your child colors the pictures. It is multi-sensory and the CD is top-notch with many pieces to listen to. One of my favorite parts of the book comes at the very end. They provide a detailed composer time line! It lists all the composers not only with their years of life, but also in their time period, Renaissance, Baroque, Rococo, Classical, Romantic, and Modern. It is really a great resource for those of you trying to fit in the composers in your chronological history study! At the very end of the book are extra notes for parents or teachers on several of the musicians within the book. Color the Classics Composers II is 45 pages and a worthwhile investment towards the musical health and knowledge of your child.

--Product Review by: Kate Kessler, Product Reviews Manager, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine