Adam's aunt and uncle sent Sam a few CD's from this great collection from "Classical Kids - A Symphony of Stories for all Ages." They are like audio books with music. A story is told about a famous composer - Vivaldi, Bach, Beethoven, etc. - and his music is played in the background, and as part of the story. There is a little bit of historical accuracy in the stories, but they really aren't meant to teach you about the composer. Here is the description from Vivaldi's Ring of Mystery:
The story: Katarina, a young violinist, arrives at the Pieta orphanage where Antonio Vivaldi was music director. Aided by Giovanni the gondolier, she searches throughout Venice for clues to her mysterious past.
The Music: Over two dozen excerpts, including Vivaldi's best-loved Four Seasons (with real sound effects), guitar, piccolo and trumpet concertos. Also featured are many of the violin pieces played by young violinists today.
Sammy loves these stories so much. I think she is listening to the music in a more active way. I'm fine with excerpts, as opposed to whole pieces. At her age, it might even be a better way to listen. We listen to all kinds of music at home, including classical, but the way the stories are interwoven with the music is a whole new experience for her. She just stands and listens, totally captivated.
I'd been meaning to get her some audio books but hadn't found anything that seemed right. These are perfect. There were times during our snow days that she would listen to Vivaldi three times in a row, and it is over 45 minutes long! Obviously, this is wonderful for me too. This is a real alternative to television when I simply must have a break.
I think these CD's are a perfect gift for kids from 2-12. And parents will appreciate it too!