A Heart for Reading {And Music}: Sarah Clarkson Remembers

Episode #94 A Heart for Reading {and Music}


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This is the last week of our series, 10 Gifts of Heart. This weeks' gift is giving your child the heart for reading and thinking. Because Sarah Clarkson, Sally's daughter, just graduated from Oxford and has said that a love for reading was what gave her a desire to study there and the ability to learn to write, she joins Sally to talk about how important books were in the shaping of her soul, heart and mind.


In this episode, Sally is joined by her daughter Sarah and they discuss the deep roots and moral imagination and character that develops through books. They discuss the gifts cultivated by a reading life, and the capacity to pour those gifts back into the world as a result. Sally and Sarah will inspire your understanding  of the importance of books as central to the rhythms of home life and our interior souls and personhood. Then Sally is joined by her friend, Terri Moon who shares about the gift of music and how to help our children have a love of classical composers, and some of her favorite books to share with your children to introduce them to music. (All the books are linked below!)


-How reading furnishes in us an ability and increased capacity to see the world through another person's eyes

-The connection between faith and imagination

- How reading expands what we view as possible

-How reading provides a place for contemplation in our lives

-How reading trains us in focused and deep attention

-How reading helps to cultivate wonder in our lives and our ability to see the world as a gift

-How the words we read and use teach us to pay attention to the world around us

-How reading creates in us a true sense of self

-How to give our children a love of classical music

-Giving our children a sense of legacy by passing on what we love and appreciate



zin! zin! zin! A Violin

A Caldecott Honor Book which would be fun for the young child. This counting book introduces all the instruments of the orchestra with fun rhymes and playful illustrations. It might end up being a family favorite.


the story of the orchestra

An educational introduction to the world of classical music - from composers and music history, to the instruments of the orchestra. 


Young people's guide to classical music

Young People’s Guide to Classical Music by Helen Bauer Good introduction to classical music, including composers and the times in which they lived, with a lot of interesting information. Just right for kids around 12 and older.


Never play music right next to the zoo

A fun book about a little boy attending an outdoor concert in the summer. Perfect for story time for preschool - grade 2, maybe during a summertime picnic at the zoo!





Carnival of the animals

A famous piece of music composed by Camille Saint-Saens is combined with fantastic illustrations and poetry. A feast for the ears and eyes that children of all ages will love.


spiritual lives of the composers

The author has devoted one chapter to each of the composers, giving a thoughtful analysis of how his faith and worldview influenced the music he wrote. Each chapter includes recommended music to listen to which will enhance your study.


the gift of music

This book, with a foreword by Francis Schaeffer, was written by women who shared many talks about great music while they lived at L’Abri. Their great insight will teach you even more about the music you are exploring.

Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra by Benjamin Britten

This is a really fun video, narrated by the famous British actor Peter Pears. It is designed to introduce children to all of the instruments of the orchestra, by themselves and in combination with each other. After all, the word, “symphony” means many sounds. There are fun illustrations included too!

1812 Overture by Tchaikovsky

This is the piece that Terri's brother loved, and it inspired him to play the trumpet.

Scheherazade, Op. 35 by Rimsky-Korsakov

 This is part of what made Terri fall in love with the sound of the violin and later want to play it.

Tubby the Tuba by George Kleinsinger and Paul Tripp

 A fun story about the tuba, a bull frog, and lots of other instruments! This version is narrated by Julia Child, a famous chef TV personality. (This is probably the one I, Sally, listened to as a child!--or something similar.)

For further episodes in this series on composers, check out cultivatinglifewithsally.com

We will introduce one composer each month at Cultivating Life with Sally each month. 

We will introduce one composer each month at Cultivating Life with Sally each month.