Classical Music for Kids: Maestro Classics a Schoolhouse Crew Review

This entry is part 8 of 27 in the series 2014 Homeschool Reviews

My name is Handel….

Even a month later we still (yes we, the whole family) break into song singing the above line after listening to My Name is Handel: The Story of Handel’s Water Music a CD of classical music for children.

Recently, as part of the The Old Schoolhouse Review Crew, we were able to review My Name is Handel: The Story of Handel’s Water Music  and Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel by Maestro Classics .  Theses are part of a series of educational musical CDs by Maestro Classics.

Maestro Classics combines the beauty of symphony music with narrations ranging from classical children’s stories to historical tidbits about the authors and  composers.

Maestro Classics is the creation of music director Stephen Simon and executive director Bonnie Ward Simon (husband and wife) who envisioned musical performances that would appeal to audiences of all ages. Well it worked! From 9 to 50ish we’re loving these CDs.

The Schoolhouse Review Crew were given several CDs to review from the Music Maestro Classics CDs  of classical music for children.

These were the two we received…


My Name is Handel classical music for children

  • My Name is Handel: The Story of Handel’s Water Music : My Name is Handel is the story of the German composer George Frideric Handel set to his symphony music. Includes an activity book with puzzles, games, the history of Handel, and sing-a-long music. For ages 5+ and families.

Mike and the Steam Shovel classical music for children

  • Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel: Written in 1939 this children’s story is about Mike Mulligan and his steam shovel named Mary Anne. The London Philharmonic Orchestra backs this children’s tale. For ages 4+ and families.


The performances on each CD feature the London Philharmonic Orchestra, sing a longs, narrations about the music, narrations about the author or composer, and more.

Each CD package includes a small activity book that contains the history and background of the music, words to the sing a long songs, information about the composer’s life, puzzles and more.

With Maestro Classics you have the option of purchasing the CD with accompanying activity book for $16.98

Or an Mp3 download and an accompanying PDF for $9.99

Other titles in the collection include…

  • The Sorcerer’s Apprentice
  • Casey at the Bat
  • Peter and the Wolf
  • The Soldiers Tale
  • The Tortoise and the Hare
  • Juanita la langosta española (the Spanish Lobster)

Maestro Classics Review classical music for children

My Name is Handel: The Story of Handel’s Water Music

Water Music reminds me so much of the British Royal Family and I can see why now that I know the background of the music. Water Music has been used in many productions so you may find it a very familiar tune yourself. Handel’s background is interesting and it makes it easy for a young child to absorb the facts while listening amongst the background of lovely chamber music.

The little activity book has held more interest for me than my daughter. Her favorite is the music itself. The booklet starts off with Handel’s background. The same information that is in the narration on the CD (but without the orchestra music in the background). Then we learn about the orchestra in Handel’s time and also important churches during Handel’s time in London. Then there is a little sheet music for, our now favorite song, My Name is Handel. If you play a little piano or guitar you can tink this out. Back in Handel’s time they used harpsichords  and organs not pianos and you can learn a little bit about them next.

Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel:

Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel was a cute story set to music. While I KNOW (you know how you just know?) I’ve heard this children’s tale before and can’t place it hearing it to the background of classical music made it come alive. I could just picture the whole thing happening. Maybe even like a musical on stage!

The little booklet included contains puzzles, background information on the conductor/composer (Stephen Simon of Maestro Music) and the other voices on the CD, the words and sheet music to Mike Mulligan, and more puzzles.

This CD is a little bit different that Handel’s Water Music but no less fun.

Each CD was just pure listening enjoyment!

We have thoroughly enjoyed the CDs we have been listening to from the Maestro Music collection. We put it on as after dinner entertainment (the one time when we are all together). I completely confess to dancing around arm in arm with my daughter. This of course was just pure amusement for my husband.

The music on these CDs is beautiful. If you’ve never had a change to attend an orchestra then these will do nicely until you can. The London Philharmonic Orchestra is known as the greatest recording orchestra in the world and you can definitely hear why in this music. The added narration on each CD is an extra treat for you and the kids and it brings the music to a level little people can totally relate to.

I studied piano as an adult I missed all the good background history on classic musicians. Water Music gave me a very nice intro to the one of classical music’s great composers.

Stories in Music is a fun way to introduce the whole family to beautiful classical music.

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