(Note that Reg Down added additional religious verses to the original When Mary Goes Walking. The original poem set to music is a single verse and has no religious connotations.)
If you want to learn songs that correspond to the historical era you are studying, click here for a list organized by era. This list also has songs we did not include in our rotation.
In the PNEU programmes, a hymn was assigned once or twice per year. Because of the nature of Wildwood Curriculum, we do not include that. If you follow a particular religious path, replace one of the Term 2 or Term 3 songs with one from your spiritual tradition.
A pdf of the entire 12 year rotation (we are on Year D, but are re-working the rotation to include more diversity): 12 year song rotation
Charlotte Mason taught sight singing to her students. There aren't many resources out there for the layman, but more and more are becoming available.
- Solfa Sofa is a great resource! It is created by RaeAnna Goss, who consults for us about music, composers, and singing. She has been a guest on our podcast, and the kids love her lessons.
- Another that's been recommended to us is Children of the Open Air. These are video lessons on YouTube.
- Still another program designed specifically for homeschoolers with no musical training is Legends of the Staff Musique. Only the first two levels are out at this time, but there are plans for five levels in total. It follows the Kodaly philosophy of musical training.
Most of the PNEU programmes throughout the Forms say to learn 2 or 3 English songs per term, with some terms adding a hymn or carol. The songs aren't specified, though a book of music is suggested.
Learn and sing these songs as a family, across Forms. Mix and match as desired, adding in songs that are important to you as a family. If you don't like one of our choices, there should be no guilt in learning a different song. We have provided several other choices for just such times.
We tried to get a good mix of songs each year. Not all are traditional folk songs, but all were chosen for singability.
Here are some others that we liked but couldn't fit in. Use any of these as substitutions for those in the regular rotation:
- Battle Hymn of the Republic (religious lyrics, but culturally important)
- Over the River and Through the Woods
- Down by the Riverside (does have non-religious versions)
- The Times Are a-Changing
- Puff the Magic Dragon
- Over the Hill and Far Away
- The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald
- Blowing in the Wind
- Git Along Little Dogies
- Johnny Has Gone for a Soldier a non-traditional but lovely version by Katie and Liz Davis (Ampersand)
- My Old Kentucky Home
- Old Man River
Considered important musical selections from the 20th century:
- Stand by Me
- Over the Rainbow
- You'll Never Walk Alone from Carousel
- I Wanna Hold your Hand
- Coal Miner's Daughter
- The Music of the Night - Phantom of the Opera
- Moon River
- Route 66
- Edelweiss from the Sound of Music
- Take Me Home, Country Roads
- I Dreamed a Dream from Les Miserables [this will be challenging, and should be saved for high school students]
Don't limit yourself to these choices, though. Have fun with singing! You could do themed terms -- or years. Perhaps your teen is going through a Celtic phase:
Maybe your pre-teen is obsessed with pirates:
- My Jolly Sailor Bold (sung in Pirates of the Caribbean On Stranger Tides)
- Pirate Music and Sea Shanties
- The 10 Manliest Sea Shanties
Has the musical theater bug hit your house?
- Moses Supposes His Toeses Are Roses (Singing in the Rain)
- Singing in the Rain
- Pore Jud is Daid (Oklahoma)
- Oh What A Beautiful Morning
- Hello, Dolly!
- Do-Re-Mi (Sound of Music)
- Good Morning (from Singing in the Rain)
Do you have a child into Westerns and the cowboy life?
- My Rifle, My Pony, and Me
- Sweet Betsy from Pike
- I Ride an Old Paint
- Git Along Home, Cindy, Cindy
- Red River Valley
Singing should be joyous and never something to just get through.