31 Fantastic free Peter and the wolf resources

NOTE: This post was originally published in August 2011 and I decided it was well overdue for an update.  The original post had 21 useful links and resources, but this updated version has grown a little – to a total of 31 resources.  Some of the links in the original article had also become obsolete so they have been replaced or revised.

For many years, Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf has been an effective and enjoyable way to teach students about the instruments of the orchestra.  I grew up listening to Peter and the Wolf on record (yes, the vinyl type) and my own children now listen to it on CD.

There are a host of excellent resources on the internet, so I thought I’d gather a selection of them here.
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Background information

1.The Wikipedia article contains a history of the work, the plot outline, a list of recordings and adaptations and some useful links to other resources

2. There’s a detailed biography on the Encyclopedia website here

3. And a brief kid-friendly version for young students on the Dallas Symphony Orchestra Kids’ site

4. Also of interest is this fact gallery on the Classic FM website which shares 15 interesting facts (and photos) about the composer

Recordings

There are far too many recordings of Peter and the Wolf to list here, but here are a few highlights:

5. There is a great list of “nostalgic favourites” on the Sinfini website

6. If you’re an Australian teacher looking for a local recording, ABC Classics released a version on the Carnival of the Animals A Parade of Kids’ Classics CD in 2009 and Dame Edna Everage narrated this version performance by the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra

7. I’m a big fan of Spotify (life-changing!!) and they have many recordings available, including this one narrated by the late David Bowie

8. There is also a free Creative Commons licensed recording on the Internet Archive website

Videos

9. On Youtube, you can find the classic Disney cartoon version with the original music, narrated by Sterling Holloway.  It’s divided into two parts: part one (below) is here and part two here

10.  There’s also a short film in which Walt Disney describes what it was like to meet Prokofiev and you can see Prokofiev himself playing the Peter and the Wolf themes on the piano

11. Then there’s the slightly odd puppet version narrated by Sting and conducted by Claudio Abbado

12. And an interesting “up close” video of the Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra which shows orchestral musicians with a bunch of Go Pro cameras attached to their instruments (see below)

13. In 2006, Breakthru Films made an award-winning claymation movie version of Peter and the Wolf.  I haven’t managed to see if myself yet, but the (incredibly short) trailers and videos of behind-the-scenes footage look amazing.  You can view the trailer on the Breakthru Films website

Lesson Plans, Story Outlines and Other Resources

14. The DSO Kids website has a Peter and the Wolf resource pack for teachers which includes the story, printable pictures, general information about watching concerts, and activities you can do with students.  To download the resource pack, go to the Lesson Plan database here and then in the “Find By” drop-down menu, choose Concert Program, then in the Concert Program menu, choose Peter and the Wolf. There are 10 downloadable PDFs

15. Phil Tulga’s Music Through Curriculum site has background information about Prokofiev, audio samples of the music themes and multimedia activities
16. The Classics for Kids site has 3 lesson plans for grades 1-3
17. The St Louis Symphony Orchestra has a complete Peter and the Wolf resource pack (free!) which includes lesson plans, printable activities, flashcards and more
18. The St Louis Symphony also has a Stand Up Symphony cut-out craft activity which would complement any Peter and the Wolf lesson
19. If you’re looking for some cross-curricular tie-ins, the Maestro Classic Home School Curriculum website has a free guide with Peter and the Wolf activities for science, history, geography, language arts, music and more
20. The Music Center has a 75-page (!) guide that includes lesson plans, the story, Prokofiev bio and much more
21. Music teacher Loretta Harbertson has created some lovely listening maps for young students (see example below)

22. Breakthru films (mentioned above) also have their own downloadable resource pack for teachers and families

Images

23. The gorgeous clipart picture used in the image at the top by Philip Martin can be found here and is free to use in an educational setting.  Right-click on the image and choose “Save image as”.  You might also like to take a look at the rest of his large collection of images – it’s worth it!

 24. I found this beautiful wolf image amongst the Creative Commons licensed images on Flickr.  You can find other images at www.compfight.com. Adjust settings so you are searching Creative Commons only and make sure safe search is on if you’re doing it with students in your presence.

Powerpoint Presentations

25. On a site related to the Philip Martin Clipart site, there are a set of links to powerpoint presentations made by teachers that are free to download and there are some other useful links for Peter and the Wolf resources.

Interactive Whiteboard Resources

When looking for interactive whiteboard resources, it’s probably best to do a search for Peter and the Wolf and the name of your interactive whiteboard brand since the resources on the internet are brand-specific

26. If you have a Smartboard, Allison Friedman has a Peter and the Wolf Notebook file for download here

27. And Martha Grondin has one here (scroll down and look under the list of Smartboard lessons)

28. If you have a Promethean board, there is a Flipchart available for download on the Promethean Planet website

iPad Apps

29. There is a free Peter and the Wolf app with narration by Alice Cooper (!) and a great in-depth review of the app on the Sinfini website

Printable Puppet Show and Masks

30. If you’re looking for a craft activity, you might like to make these masks and act out the story with your students

31. Although not free, I just had to share this gorgeous printable puppet show (pictured below) which would be perfect for young students.  The artist also makes a beautiful Nutcracker puppet theatre too.

Peter and wolf puppets

Any others?

I hope you find these useful.  Are there other resources you’ve found on the internet?  Or perhaps you’ve made your own resources that you’d be willing to share with other teachers? Let me know in the comments below.

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