We began homeschooling 16 years ago when my oldest was just 5 and entering kindergarten. About two years into our journey, we decided to read the Little House books and do a unit study with them. We used Margie Gray’s Prairie Primer as our spine and then added all kinds of fun supplemental books and resources to go along with it, such as The Little House Cookbook, My Little House Craft Book, Laura Ingalls Wilder Country and Diana Waring’s Musical Memories of Laura Ingalls Wilder, part of the Experience History Through Music series.
This last resource became a family favorite. We listened to the music long after we finished reading the Little House books. In fact, we just kept the cassette tape (remember, this WAS the 90’s) in the car for entertainment while running errands around town or during long road trips. Our little family of 4 memorized all of the songs and wore that tape out. We eventually purchased the other tapes in the series – Westward Ho! and America – and did the same with those cassette tapes… played them over and over until we wore them out.
As the years went by, our little family of four – two parents and two kids – grew to become a bustling family of eight. We continued our homeschooling journey and each child in turn read through the Little House books as they reached school age. However, the youngest two never had the chance to listen to those beloved Diana Waring tapes because they were no longer around when they were born into our family.
Fast forward several more years…
This past spring I heard a rumor that Diana Waring was bringing BACK this amazing folk music, combined with the fascinating stories they represent in American history! The Experience Music Through History series was going to be back in print. I couldn’t wait! I asked if I could be first in line to write a review because I wanted to get my hands on these before anyone else did!
After the books and CDs (yes, I said CDs! This is 2014 after all) arrived in the mail, I told my kids it was time to hop in the car to pick up their dad from the airport. I even had one of my adult children with me that day. I said nothing, but I just inserted the CD into the player and waited for reactions. My oldest began singing all of the songs by heart and the younger ones joined in the fun with clapping and knee-slapping and giggling over the wonderful lyrics.
And since that day, we have been singing the songs nonstop. Enter our home this afternoon and you might hear any one of these tunes:
1. Wait for the Wagon
2. Green Grows theLaurel
3. The Old Chariot
4. Buy a Broom
5. Sweet By and By
6. Rock Me to Sleep
7. Buffalo Gals
8. A Railroad Man for Me
10. Pop! Goes the Weasel
11. Oft in the Stilly Night
12. The Girl I left Behind Me
13. My Sabbath Home
I think Wait for the Wagon, The Old Chariot and Buffalo Gals are our three favorites. If you want to have a knee-slapping good time, check out Musical Memories of Laura Ingalls Wilder along with the other two volumes in the series. I wonder which songs your family will like best. Enjoy!
By the way, the individual titles in the series are $18.99 each, but if you purchase all 3 during the month of July, you can get them for the special price of $50 for the set. Great deal!
Disclaimer: I received a free copy of Experiencing History Through Music in exchange for my honest review of the materials. What you just read is my honest review.