It is a rainy day in my neighborhood, again today! So, it got me thinking that it would be a great day for a post about music and art. Using art to help children express musical understanding is a great way to exercise creative thinking and expression. I like to use a variety of pieces for an activity like this, but one of my “go to” pieces is “The Aquarium” from Camille Saint-Saen’s “Carnival of the Animals.” Here is a YouTube recording
Turn the lights down, get comfy, and just listen to the music together. When you have finished, talk about the music together asking such questions as how did that music make you feel? What instruments did you hear? What colors did you think the music sounded like? At this point, you will want to keep it a secret that the music is about an aquarium – as this will steer your child in a specific direction and not allow for a more creative interpretation of the music.
Now get out crayons, colored pencils, or better yet – water colors and a big piece of paper or poster board. Create a masterpiece while listening to the music, I bet your little one will ask to play the music again and again while he or she finishes up their masterpiece. When the activity is complete, you could talk about what the composer wrote the music to represent or just leave the experience for the creative expression it allowed you and your child. This is my favorite “Carnival of the Animals” book