Help in Music

Interactive sites are becoming quite popular to educate children, because of their ability to teach in a way that is unique and fun. They are especially useful when imparting music or other subjects that require audio components. The following sites are directed at children of varying ages, and provide useful information about orchestral music and music theory.

Inspiring Young People with the New York Philharmonic
The New York Philharmonic’s Kid Zone provides a variety of activities for children four to eight years old. The site features interactive presentations of the instruments in an orchestra and various composers. There are also a variety of games and activities, such as instructions to make your own instrument at home. Also included are a few links to the New York Philharmonic’s main site, which introduce some young and inspiring musicians and tells about concerts for younger audiences. The site overall is very colorful, appealing and easy to navigate for children. It’s a great way to introduce children to the orchestra.

Learn to Read Music the Fun Way
Happy Note features several games that can be played on the computer, Apple device or Android device. The games all focus on the goal of teaching students, ages five to eight, to read and hear music with a fun twist. Created by licensed music teachers, the games will entice both children who resist classic music lessons and children who would rather learn in a more interactive way. The games feature cute characters and bright colors that will appeal to younger children.

Games to Teach Music Theory
The Music Learning Community requires a subscription, but the cost isn’t very expensive for what it offers. The site contains hundreds of educational games all teaching music theory and aural skills to students of all levels, but will be most effective for students five to ten years old. The variety of games gives students a chance to learn in the way that is best suited for their individual needs, and will give students a lot to explore on the site while learning. Besides the paid portion of the site, there are a few games that are free to play. The games are easy to link to music lessons, so they have the potential to reinforce what is taught at school or in extracurricular music classes.

A Virtual Tour of the Orchestra
LSO Play shows up-close views of the different parts of an orchestra. Since a lot of the site is text-based and has a very professional appearance, it is best for children eight to fourteen years old. There are a variety of performances to choose from, and each one has camera views of various sections of the orchestra. The close-up views allow the site visitor to see how the instruments are played, and see where in the orchestra the performers sit. After watching the performance, the viewer sees an interactive map showing the sections of the orchestra and describing their instruments in detail. The virtual tour of the orchestra is a unique and entertaining experience.

Resources for Students
The Homework Spot’s classical music section has useful resources for students ages eleven and older. There is a lot of text and information on the site, but the links make it simple to narrow down the information and find what is needed. The links describe what each secondary site includes. This site will be most useful for music homework and school reports on composers or classical music.

by Caroline LaMotta