Art Week! Get Ready

After a bit of homeschool burn out, we decided to take a break from our same old math and history routine for a full week of ART. It has been a breath of fresh air for both me and my budding artist. Each day this week, I'll be posting our morning and afternoon lessons. Some art lessons find quick and memorable ways to teach the -isms of art history. I love art history, but this week isn't about names and dates - rather its about kindling a love for painting and looking, and about teaching our kids that every skill requires hard work.

The goal this week is to make a lot of art; to experiment with media (specifically watercolors and oil pastels) and textures; to spend time looking at the world around us, and looking at good art; and finally to learn a bit about curating - selecting and organizing our work for a show. My kids are 6 and 4, so this is geared toward younger artists - but it could work for older children if you encourage each child to work on their level.

Come along and join us! You can keep up with all the posts by using the links below.

Getting Ready

My girl and I envisioned art week after a trip to the library. I checked out every JUV Easy book I could find about art for my daughter, including Fancy Nancy: Aspiring Artist.  In this book, Nancy spends her fall break with her own Art Week, and ending it with a neighborhood exhibit. We thought this was a fantastic idea and decided to have our own. Check out some of these books about painting and artists to get excited about making art. 

Besides getting excited - you've got to get organized! You'll need some materials and a dedicated space. You can do quite a lot with cheap art materials, but its nice to have a few good things as well. We mostly use watercolors because they're versatile and easy to clean up, but we use pencils and oil pastels a bit, too. All of these materials are easy for the kids to use and clean up on their own, so they'll be abl to continue using them after Art Week is over. Here's what we're using:
  • Pencils, colored pencils, sharpener
  • Watercolors (cheap sets)
  • Brushes (again, cheap ones are okay, but go ahead and by a new set with a variety of sizes)
  • Typing paper for drawing and scratch paper, lots of it!
  • sketch pad for pastels and drawing
  • Watercolor paper (don't skimp on this)
  • oil pastels
  • a good eraser (the ones on the ends of the pencils rarely work)
  • old tea towels for blotting your brushes
  • old cups for water
  • several of our lessons used resources from Art Projects for Kids (I'll tell you about them as we go)
Prepare to have this space taken over for the week. We spread the paintings out on the floor to dry, so there is little floor space left by the end of the day. Each morning we stack the dry paintings up and start again. Just give yourself plenty of table and floor space.

Once last thing - collect as many art books as you can, from your bookshelves or library. Text books or coffee table books with big pictures of good art. These will be a great resource throughout the week. As you study landscapes, flip through and look for landscapes, etc. See how these great artists dealt with space, proportion, color and texture. You don't have to teach about the artists, just look and notice what makes each painting a good painting.

Let's get started!

Keep up with the rest of Art Week here:
Get Ready
Monday: Experimenting with Materials and Textures
Tuesday: Landscapes and Space
Wednesday: People and Portraits
Thursday: Storytelling and Comic Books
Friday: The Exhibit

1 comment:

Martha said...

Awesome idea!!! ♥ You've inspired us already. I look forward to seeing what you will share!