Three Experience History Through Music CDs with companion books offer musical accompaniments to United States history studies. These were originally published by Hear & Learn Publications more than 20 years ago, but they’ve been updated and “polished up” in a new format. Each CD has 13 to 16 lively folk songs performed by professional musicians with appropriate musical accompaniment. The companion book for each CD has sheet music with chord charts for each song. The books also have two-page illustrated historical vignettes to accompany each song that explain the historical connection. Illustrations are historical photos, hand-drawn illustrations, and paintings, all reproduced in black and white. This is the sort of learning that makes history come alive for students!
Ideally, you’ll use the three CDs and book in historical order. America: The Heart of a New Nation is first. It ranges from colonial days and the American Revolution through the building of the transcontinental railroad. It includes some standard folks songs with which children should become familiar such as “Yankee Doodle,” “Oh! Susanna,” and “She’ll Be Coming Around the Mountain.”
Westward Ho! The Heart of the Old West comes next as it covers the westward expansion with songs such as “Boll Weevil,” “Westward Ho!”, “Home on the Range,” and “Little Old Sod Shanty.”
Musical Memories of Laura Ingalls Wilder, third in the series, overlaps Westward Ho! with songs from the same era up through the end of the nineteenth century. The first two CDs each have one song that reflects the spiritual movements of the times—“Wade in the Water,” a spiritual song sung by African-American slaves on America: The Heart of a New Nation, and “Missionary’s Farewell” on Westward Ho! Musical Memories of Laura Ingalls Wilder has a stronger spiritual emphasis in its stories and songs, reflecting the Christian beliefs of Laura Ingalls Wilder. But this CD also features some of the most well-known folk songs such as “Wait for the Wagon,” “Sweet By and By,” “Buffalo Gals,” “Pop! Goes the Weasel,” and “The Girl I left Behind Me.”
The Experience History Through Music CDs are a delightful way to liven up your history courses that all ages will enjoy.