When homeschooling our children, there are usually a few subjects that we feel less confident in teaching. Often, one of these subjects is music.
I find the best solution for teaching a subject I am less than comfortable with is getting a really good curriculum that tells us exactly what to do, yet, leaves room for flexibility so that I can adapt it to my children. Thankfully, I was able to find exactly this kind of music program for our homeschool.
But, before I tell you about Music in Our Homeschool, let’s talk about WHY music is important to teach to our children.
Did you know that music helps the brain develop? It especially helps new neural connections grow in the left side of the brain, which is responsible for language processing. Music also develops math skills since the notes correlate with fractions and ratios. Listening and playing music is also fun and helps us relieve stress! Planning music lessons into our week allows our children a break from subjects that may be more stressful for them. And, it gives them a healthy method for relieving stress that they can utilize throughout their lives.
So, are you ready for an easy way to teach music in your homeschool?
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Music in Our Homeschool Curriculum
We discovered Music in Our Homeschool (MIOH) through a bundle sale a few years ago. And my youngest son fell in love with their State Songs course right away!
A homeschool mom of eight children (!) and trained music teacher, Geno Mayo, started this company six years ago to help homeschool families teach their children music. And she makes it as simple and as easy as possible with lots of videos, printables and hands on projects.
Shortly after beginning our first MIOH course, Gena launched her MIOH+ membership plan and we quickly jumped in. This has given us access to all of her elementary school courses for one low monthly price. It also gives us new monthly lessons available only to students in the membership. The past few months, these lessons have focused on one group of instruments each month: brass, woodwinds, strings and percussion. There is a video introducing each of the main instruments in the group and coloring/notebooking pages for each instrument.
Buying Each Course Separately
Families can also continue to buy each of her courses individually. This provides you with lifetime access to the course, which may be preferable if you have multiple children that will use the course over the years.
Five Favorite Courses
So what types of courses does MIOH offer? Here are five of our favorites!
State Songs of the 50 US States
As I mentioned above, the first course we ever used from Music in Our Homeschool was their State Songs course. When my son, who was about 9 at the time, tried it for the first time, he wanted to keep learning about more states even though it wasn’t even our ‘school time’ of day. Geography has never been his ‘thing’, but music was definitely an interesting entry point for him!
For each state, there are written facts and a video about the state, as well as, a video of the state song and any other songs associated with the state. For example, the songs “Carolina in My Mind” and “Carolina Girls” are included for our state of NC. There are links to sheet music and lyrics for some of the songs and a generic notebooking page that can be used with any of the states.
This course became a key part of how we learned about one state a week that school year. (You can learn about some of the other ways we studied the states here.)
World Music for Elementary
Since the State Songs course worked so well for us, incorporating the World Music course into our monthly unit studies of different countries was a natural fit! We have been learning about traditional instruments and songs for each country through videos. Often, there is a hands on activity at the end of each lesson such as making an instrument. And there are printable notebooking pages with pictures to color of each of the instruments from around the world.
Over 60 countries are included in this course.
Learn Classical Music with Cartoons
This course was new this year and we have had fun learning about different composers with it on our Fun Fridays! Each week we listen to the song in a cartoon and use the discussion questions to dig a little deeper into the song. We then learn about the composer through text and video and listen to the song in other shows and movies. Then, the boys love to take the little quiz at the end of the lesson.
Intro to Musicals for Elementary Students
Another Fun Friday activity this year has been learning about different musicals. Background, video clips of different songs and links to other resources about each of the 11 musicals are included. My son who used to participate in musical theatre loves including these in our school!
Music Lessons for Holidays and Special Days
We also love to do quick holiday music lessons throughout the year. We have listened to Irish instruments on St. Patrick’s Day, learned about mariachi bands on Cinco de Mayo, and compared different versions of Christmas songs in the month of December. There are 40 different holidays and special days included in this course!
This is only a sample of all the courses MIOH offers and next year, I am hoping we can work in the American Music for Elementary Course!
Fine Arts High School Membership
Do you have a high schooler or soon to be high schooler in your homeschool? Then, you will want to check out the Fine Arts in Our Homeschool Plus: the High School Membership Experience. It is an easy way to include Fine Arts on your high school transcript. It includes seven courses:
- Music Appreciation: Middle Ages Thru Classical Era course
- Music Appreciation of the Romantic Era course
- 20th Century Music Appreciation course
- 10 Weeks of Shakespeare introductory course
- Charlotte Mason Inspired High School Fine Arts course
- Advanced Music Theory course
- Special Fine Arts Topic Masterclasses
You can purchase and start any of the courses at any time, but the membership only opens a few times a year. It is open next from August 8th-15th, 2021. If you have any questions about how we have taught music in our homeschool that I have not answered, feel free to comment below!