What to Read: Children’s Books About Ludwig van Beethoven

Looking for ways to explore the life and musical legacy of Ludwig van Beethoven in your homeschool? Good news: today I’m sharing my list of Beethoven books for kids to help you learn.

What to Read: Children's Books About Ludwig Van Beethoven

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Learning about someone as significant as Ludwig van Beethoven can seem a little overwhelming if you’re not sure where to start. That’s especially true if you’re not too familiar with classical music or musical mechanics.

That’s why I’m happy to share this list of Beethoven books for kids. We’ve been working through some of them in our homeschool recently and we’ve found them to be a great help in getting acquainted with this musical genius.

Ludwig Van Beethoven Books for Kids

1. Beethoven for Kids

Beethoven for Kids is my favorite place to start when it comes to children’s books about Beethoven. It’s full of general biographical information, but also includes Beethoven-inspired activities, information about the historical climate of Beethoven’s time, and his musical influences and inspirations.

2. The 39 Apartments of Ludwig Van Beethoven

I loved reading this fun picture book with my kiddo because it showcased a unique challenge Beethoven dealt with: finding neighbors who would tolerate his loud piano playing and composing! The 39 Apartments of Ludwig Van Beethoven is definitely a fun one to include while studying Beethoven with your kids.

3. Ludwig Van Beethoven

Mike Venezia’s Getting to Know the World’s Greatest Artists: Ludwig Van Beethoven is a great one to consider if you’re looking for Beethoven books. This one combines a biographical overview with fun illustrations, making it an engaging way to become acquainted with this master composer.

4. The Heroic Symphony

I’m so grateful to have stumbled upon The Heroic Symphony at our local library. This colorful picture book tells how Beethoven’s Eroica symphony came to be, the surprising inspiration behind it, and how he adapted his work while dealing with his worsening hearing loss.

5. Ludwig Beethoven and the Chiming Tower Bells

We first learned of Ludwig Beethoven and the Chiming Bells when we worked through Zeezok Music Appreciation a couple of years ago. Like the other titles in Opal Wheeler’s Great Musicians Series, this one is superbly written and looks at Beethoven’s life and influences. While it’s a longer read than most of these Beethoven books on my list, my son devoured it!

6. Why Beethoven Threw the Stew

Okay, you know how you’re not supposed to judge a book by its cover? Even so, a good cover and attention-grabbing title certainly go a long way in getting kids interested in learning. Am I right? 😉

That’s where Why Beethoven Threw the Stew comes into our list. It’s not exclusively about Beethoven, (Bach, Mozart, Schumann, and Stravinsky are included in the title) but it’s certainly an interesting way to meet these legendary composers and a good way to inspire further reading.

7. What’s So Great About Beethoven?

What’s So Great About Beethoven? is another biography to consider if you’re learning about Beethoven with your kids. This one is a good choice for independent readers because of its content and length, but it’s worth pointing out that many of the reviews say it contains spelling and grammar errors. If you’re specifically looking for a kid-friendly Beethoven biography and can look past those errors, it’s a good resource to add to your list.

8. Beethoven Lives Upstairs

An insightful picture book about the impact of Beethoven’s musical contributions, Beethoven Lives Upstairs looks at the great composer through the eyes of a young boy who experienced Beethoven’s genius in a unique way. What’s extra cool about this one is that you can enhance your reading experience through the Beethoven Lives Upstairs album (it beautifully combines the book with Beethoven’s music) or the movie.

9. Mr. Beethoven and Me

A good reading choice for middle elementary kids, Mr. Beethoven and Me is a cute book that introduces Beethoven through the story of a girl who gets to meet the musical master himself while preparing to play for the upcoming Beethoven Bonanza.

What to Read: Children's Books About Ludwig Van Beethoven

Looking for more ideas for learning about Beethoven in your homeschool? If so, check out SQUILT Volume 2. It’s an easy, no- fuss approach to exploring the Classical Era with your kids and includes three lessons on Beethoven.

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