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15-Minute Music Lesson Freebie: Music of the Olympics

Who is ready for the Olympics? I still remember the first time I got into watching them during the summer of 1984 when they were in Los Angeles. But, I think I enjoy the Winter Olympics even more! On February 4, 2022, they will open in Beijing. As you prepare your kids for watching the Olympics, spend some time learning about the music they will be hearing during it with this Music of the Olympics lesson!

15-Minute Music Lesson Freebie_ Music of the Olympics

15-Minute Music Lesson Freebie: Music of the Olympics

I have 4 pieces/songs for you to learn about and listen to for this lesson. Then, when you watch the Olympics, you’ll recognize them when you hear them!

By the way, if you like this lesson, you will love the self-paced online music course called 15-Minute Music Lessons for Elementary Students.

15-Minute Music Lessons self-paced online course for elementary students. 15 separate lessons with printables at

Bugler’s Dream

1.  Bugler’s Dream was written in 1958 by French-American composer Leo Arnaud as part of his Charge Suite. The piece is often thought of by Americans as the “Olympic theme” because it was played so often during the televised games beginning with the 1964 Olympics. The musical theme of Bugler’s Dream is based on a typical cavalry trumpet’s call which was composed during Napoleon’s Consulat.

Olympic Fanfare and Theme

2. In 1984 American composer John Williams wrote the official music of the XXIII Olympiad in Los Angeles called Olympic Fanfare and Theme. John Williams received a Grammy Award for Best Instrumental Composition for it in 1985. The music is now known to all as representing the Olympics.

(Learn more about John Williams and all the famous movie music he has written in the 15-Minute Music Lesson on Music of Star Wars.)

In 1996, Williams wrote an alternate version of “Olympic Fanfare and Theme”  for the Atlanta Olympic Games, which replaced the first part of the piece with Arnaud’s Bugler’s Dream.

“The Olympic Hymn”

3. The Olympic Hymn, also known as the Olympic Anthem, is played when the Olympic flag is raised. It was written by composer Spyridon Samaras and poet Kostis Palmaras. It was first played for the 1896 Olympic games in Greece and was declared the official hymn in 1957. The version below was sung by Sissel in Norwegian at the Norway Olympics in 1994.

“When You Believe”

4. You will enjoy this next video because it shows athletes from a variety of Olympic sports. It features the song “When You Believe” by Ken D. Ward.

5. If you would like to continue with more music of the Olympics, find a great list here.

Free Download 4-Page Printable Pack

Download a free 4-page Printable Pack to go along with the 15-Minute Music Lesson Freebie: Music of the Olympics. There is a PDF version of the lesson plan, a page on the brass family of the orchestra, and a quiz about the brass family, and a “Listen and Draw” page.

Disclosure: I get commissions for purchases made through affiliate links in this post.

Learn More About China ~ the Music:

More Olympic Fun:


  • I love the Online Unit Studies from Techie Homeschool Mom. Check out the 2021 Summer Games Online Unit Study to learn about the History of the Olympics, the Traditions of the Olympics, Becoming an Olympian, and specifics about 2021 Summer Games. Along with hands-on activities, students will create a collection of online puzzles to share what they learn!

Teach your kids all about the Summer Olympics with this Online Unit Study!


Learn about the Summer Games through this Chalk Pastel art lesson.

  • Love to go on rabbit trails with your kids? Rabbit Trails Through the Olympics is a lesson from This Bit of Life that takes you through several activities to learn about and do some “rabbit trails” through the topic.


Rabbit Trails Through the Olympics, a fun lesson for elementary students to learn about the Olympic games.

And, here’s one especially for the Winter Olympics:

Winter Olympics Rabbit Trails

Related Posts:


Get this free 15-Minute Music Lesson for music of the Olympics. #musicinourhomeschool #homeschoolmusic #elementarymusic #musiclessonsforkids

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  1. Hi Gena,
    Good idea! I can’t wait to listen to your music suggestions with my gymnast daughter. Looking forward to broadening our experience of watching the summer games by being familiar with the music! Thanks for the post!

    1. Yes, it is. Let me double check to make sure there are no problems with it.
      Thanks for letting me know!

      1. I tested it out and received the email with the download link immediately. Try again and if you don’t see the email, check your spam or promotions folder or try a different email address.

  2. Thanks for the wonderful lesson idea! I’m a music teacher in the public school system and I appreciate the free download worksheets.
    If I may, just one suggestion. The picture you have for the french horn is actually a sousaphone. The picture you have for the tuba is also a sousaphone as well. The sousaphone is a marching band instrument. It would be best for your kiddos to know exactly what they look like. Here is a link to a couple of pictures.
    French Horn:
    Hope this helps make a little more sense when it comes to instruments 🙂

    1. Thank you so much for the clarification, Melissa–and for the links.
      I will be much more careful in the future.

  3. I’m so excited about this! The first video isn’t working…it says it’s not available. I wanted to let you know. I’m excited to use this with my kids!

  4. "State Songs of the 50 U.S. States" online course from Music in Our Homeschool is the perfect way to combine geography and music education in your homeschool, classroom, or homeschool co-op. Click through to see a free preview lesson. #musiccourse #elementarymusic #musiceducation #musiclessonsforkids #musicinourhomeschool

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Music Lessons for Holidays and Special Days self-paced online course for elementary students. Learn about some great music associated with holidays throughout the year, plus fun days such as Star Wars Day, Dr. Seuss Day, and Talk Like a Pirate Day!