Roadschool: How we study art

Roadschool: How we study art

Here’s a round up of my favorite art education resources – both for art appreciation and for building creativity skills! For my materials list, check out this post or grab my Amazon shopping list here.

Art Appreciation

  •  Gallery Scavenger Hunt – Julie Bogart of Bravewriter (my writing and homeschool guru!) suggests creating a scavenger hunt for kids while you tour art galleries or museums. Pick up postcards from the gift shop before you tour an exhibit and find a few pieces the kids will look for. We’ve done this several times and the kids love it! I have been able to find galleries online and, as I described in my How to Rock an Art Crawl with Kids post, we’ll look at my phone of the images before we go in to find a few pieces that we like and want to see in person. Read more art appreciation ideas from Julie here.
My kids loved the bronze statues – that they were invited to touch! – at Waterworks Gallery on Friday Harbor in the San Juan Islands, WA!
  • Read Aloud / Morning Basket – one of the books I include in my morning basket is a 20th century Art Book or something similar like the Pantone: 20th Century in Color. We will pick a color and look for it throughout the book, talking about the pieces we like or what we notice. Or, we’ll pick a medium and search for pieces like sculptures or collage based on the creativity skill we’ve been working on.
  • I Spy – The kids loved pouring through the Can You Find It? books from the Metropolitan Museum of Art! I chose the America version to pair with our trip around the states.

Creativity Skill Building

Books on how to teach skills:

  • Let Out the Sunshine by Regina Reynolds Barnett – Montessori based lessons for 2-6 year olds to develop construction activities: separating, joining, modeling, sculpturing and communication activities: drawing and painting
  • The Art of Teaching Art to Children by Nancy Beal – a fantastic look at inviting children to create and how to talk to them about their work. For 5 years old and up, focusing on collage, drawing, painting, clay, printmaking, construction, and social studies.

Step-by-step drawing practice

  • Kids Art Hub How To drawing with an incredibly positive dad and his kid(s). Nore before starting – they use sharpies!
  • Ed Emberly How To Draw books. I had Ed Emberly books (the thumbprint one!) when I was young and love the step by step approach. My kids found success in this approach after age 6.

History and Artist-inspired projects

Art History Kids I love the projects offered by Art History Kids. They are artist or movement based and include open-ended, no prep projects. My kids loved the Monet haystacks project – we looked at boulders in Lassen Volcanic Park at three points throughout the day to see how the shadows and light changed on them!

Even I got into this one – that’s how I know I love Art History Kids projects!

Finally, if you’re looking for actual scripted lessons, here are two great and free resources:

Park City Elementary Visual Arts

National Park Educator Resources – the National Park Service has some great lesson plans available, so you can pair your art study with your trip destination!

Those are my favorite art education resources – what are yours?

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