This is a complimentary review for Melanated Review Squad. I purchased this curriculum with my own money to use in my homeschool.
If you and your children want to experience a world tour of music discovery, then you had better grab your passport, thousands of dollars for travel expenses, and a team of knowledgeable guides. Or, you can take a more reasonable and measured approach by utilizing Living Harmonies from Thistles and Biscuits. This year-long curriculum covers ten musical genres that span the globe, providing the opportunity to objectively and subjectively experience an exciting variety of music. I can almost promise that you and your students have not been exposed to every type of music presented. In fact, we were not even remotely familiar with several of the genres. But moving through the workbook gives an overview and history of each style, followed by a more in-depth exploration of the instruments and techniques used, rounded out with examples of notable composers and performers. Each of these journeys is supported by a slew of YouTube links so that everyone can better understand what the text is describing. Questions and prompts encourage students to reflect upon and think critically and creatively about what they have learned.
Overall, this curriculum is enriched with so much culture, which keeps your students engaged the entire time.
Homeschooling three kids requires a lot of prep and planning and I love how this curriculum provides various rabbit trails to explore, allowing us to decide how much we want to learn. This year in our homeschool, I really wanted to take our time to explore each genre. I really want to take our time exploring different genres this year.
What better way to start than with the Jazz era?!
We used Living Harmonies to first introduce the genre. Using the many links provided, we were immediately transported into the Jazz age, listening to John Coltrane’s arrangements, Thelonious Monk, and more. After we went over the components of Jazz, my kids each selected a musical instrument to research and explore. I then assigned each child with a musician from the Jazz era.
As we wrap up our final projects and presentations next week, I am so grateful and appreciative of the work Betsy and her husband have put into this beautiful curriculum.
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