03 March 2021

Byron's Games Maestro Mastery - Explore the Composers Review

 Disclosure: I received this product free through the Homeschool Review Crew

Games have played a huge part in my homeschool throughout the years. There is nothing like a fun game that teaches the concepts in the form of a game that you can play over and over.

Byron's Games has a new game called Maestro Mastery - Explore the Composers. I didn’t grow up learning about composers nor did I have a music education. Since, I started homeschooling my kids I have always added some music instruction from composers, and other educational components around music.

My family has enjoyed the previous games from Byron's Games you can read my review Continent Race and Math Sprint.

Mastery - Explore the Composers is for ages 5 and up. You can have 2+ players. Plan for approximately 30 minutes per game.

Game Contents:

Matching Composer Cards 104

Music Timeline Card

Fold-out Poster


Matching Composer Cards-
The cards cover 52 composers. The cards are full-color playing cards. There is a good mixture of both male and female composers throughout the deck. On the matching pair of cards both will have the country of origin, an era of music, name of the composer, and the year of birth and death. The only difference is that one card gives you a bit more information. For example on Ludwig Von Beethoven tells you that he was a prolific pianist and that he is known for composing his 9 symphonies with a huge amount of piano and chamber music. Information also talks about the composer's music and other information. The majority of the cards are from the Contemporary and Romantic eras. The Medieval era only has 2 cards, Renaissance 1 card, Baroque 6 cards, and Classical era 4 cards.

Music Timeline Card- is a card with Medieval, Renaissance, Baroque, Classical Romantic, and Contemporary that includes the year, picture of some of the instruments, and a brief history and facts about the era of music. You will use the Music Timeline Card after all the cards have been matched.

Fold-out Poster- This is a full-colored mini-poster that displays all the composers along with the era of music at the bottom of the poster.

Instructions- Like all of Bryon’s Games the instructions aren’t complicated and the games are easy to play. This makes this a super easy family-friendly game for everyone in the family. Little kids can play with the help of an adult reading the information on the cards.

The game is a memory matching game. There are two separate Composer Card sets. You play one deck at a time except for playing with a large group. With a  large group, you can add in the second Composer Card set.

First, you will need to mix up the cards well and lay them face down in rows. Going clockwise each player will turn over 2 cards per play. If a match is found the player will show the other players the card. The player will also give information provided on the Composer Card. They will say the Composers name, country of origin the dates of the composer's life. This will have the year of birth and death. Also, the card has on it the era of music. Some of the eras of music are Romantic, Medieval, Baroque, Contemporary, Renaissance, and Classical.

As you are collecting your matching pairs you put the cards face up, in groups by an era of music. The era is color-coded for easy matching up.

The winner is declared once all the matches have been made. There is an Overall Winner which is the player with the most matches of Composer Cards. There is also an Era Winner in which there can be multiple era winners of anyone having the most number of pairs from a specific era.

The winner of each era will then read the Music Timeline Card out loud of the era that they won. You will lay down the composer next to the era they are from.

You can listen to sample music of each of the featured composers in the Composer Card set. You can add this feature after a match is made or after the game is completed.

There is also an extra challenge format. This is great if you have played the game a lot and familiar with the composers' music. You add in the player identifying the era of music.

Or you can lay out 3-5 Composer Cards facing up. Play one of the composer's music samples and see if you can identify the work. As you can see there are a few variations of playing the game.

There is also and optional listening feature where you can hear a sample of each of the composer’s music from the website. You can do this after each match is made or adapt the music to fit your game.

How Did I Use Maestro Mastery - Explore the Composers in my homeschool?

The players have been my son- 15 and daughter-18, and me-mom.  We have played the game together several times the last few weeks. My son has also been playing with my daughter with just the two of them. 

Playing a game during school time is always a lot of fun.

We used a half a deck of cards and sometime half of that. My 18 year old has several disabilities and her attention span was much better with a smaller deck. Also being able to find matches quickly made her more successful finding matches and not getting discouraged quickly. We adapted the reading part for my daughter who struggled with the reading. Now the rules state that you read the card out loud for little ones but, to keep her dignity as she is starting to notice that she is behind in her reading level. We choose one person almost like a banker to be the reader of each card. This way she is still learning and doesn’t feel embarrassed. She thinks a designated reader is part of the game. We did let her say the country, and era which she picked up quickly after playing a few times. At the end of the game when you Music Timeline Card we also adapted and let each player choose two composers for the designated Music Timeline Card reader to read the cards out-loud that have been chosen. This was done also for attention span and to make it not so overwhelming with information for my daughter.

My daughter gets pretty excited when she finds a match. My son enjoys reading the information on the cards. The cat adds an extra element to the game challenge.

My daughter did amazing at putting 3 composers down and playing a piece of their music. She 98% of the time could match them quickly. My son and I didn’t do as well when doing that.

My daughter liked the game. My son played the game faithfully with the family and helped me out when I wasn’t at home playing with his sister. He prefers more strategy games. He thought it’s great way to learn about composers. The game plays quickly and is easy to learn.

I think this would be a great addition if you are doing a unit study or lapbook on composers. It gives it a unique hands on learning experience. The game is entertaining, easy to play, adaptable to fit your homeschool and individuals needs.

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Other members of the Homeschool Review Crew have been using Maestro Mastery - Explore the Composers and The Family Journal from Byron's Games. Click here or on the graphic below to find out more.




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