Have you ever heard of Aesop's Fables? Chances are, if you are a mommy of a preschooler, you have heard one of their stories, even if you haven't realized where it came from. Take for instance the story of "The Tortoise and the Hare"; Ahhh light bulb moment, see now you remember. As a member of the TOS Review Crew, I was sent a CD titled "The Tortoise and the Hare" from the company Maestro Classics. I was in the car when I picked up the mail, so I popped it in the CD player and continued on my way. The kids enjoyed the story. The music was conducted by Stephen Simon and played by the London Philharmonic Orchestra. Pretty Impressive.
After the story was told, I really expected the CD to end. Much to my surprise, it did not. Actually, I was very impressed with what happened next. Additional tracks were included on the CD that taught the history of Aesop's fables, the point of the story as well as the composers thought process through the story to add musical details (my untrained ear did not pick up on, so I am sure my kids did not catch it either). Once the educational/ informative tracks ended, they retold "The Tortoise and the Hare", which was much more interesting to listen to given all the background information. I had fun listening closely and pointing out where the conductor put little musical details into the story line. The CD also came with an informative activity booklet.
Maestro classics stated that the Cd I was given is for ages four and up. I would concur with that and add that even my 8 year old was very interested. I would recommend this product to a family that loves music, especially quality, educational music that tells a good moral tale. It would also be a nice compliment to a unit study on music, or Children's literature. Maestro Classics can be found at www.MaestroClassics.com Each set costs $16.98 and that includes the CD, story, activity booklet and the educational tracks. They are offering 3 sets for $45.00. In addition to The Tortoise and the Hare the company also offers Cd's titled "Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel" (a favorite story in our house.); "Peter and the Wolf"; "The Story of Swan Lake" just to name a few. Worth a look!