Curriculum & Resources
for teaching ART at home
Draw 3D / Mark Kistler
Draw to Learn / Notgrass
Need more BIG LISTS? Click here
Curriculum & Resources
for teaching ART at home
Draw 3D / Mark Kistler
Draw to Learn / Notgrass
Need more BIG LISTS? Click here
This project came about when I purchased a new table and wanted to protect the top. I didn’t want to hide it under a tablecloth and I don’t like fabric placemats, so I was looking for another solution.
While picking up greeting cards at the dollar store the other day, I noticed they had plastic chargers. I picked up a half dozen to see what I could do with them.
I love how they came out!
Here’s how I did it.
– as many chargers as you need
– black Krylon Fusion spray paint*
– black Krylon Chalkboard paint (also comes in green!)
*Krylon Fusion is the only spray paint I have found that really sticks to plastic — requires no surface prep, either.
How to do it:
Start with Krylon Fusion. I spray (outside) into a box propped up against a tree or the side of the garage. Follow the manufacturers directions. At first, it looks like this:
Then, it starts to look like this:
Cover the top entirely, even the edges. I didn’t need to spray the bottoms because they were already black.
Once dry, start spraying with the chalkboard spray. It only takes one coat, but take your time, since this paint is fickle and doesn’t always spray smoothly. I find shaking the can over and over and clearing the nozzle frequently helps prevent pesky droplets from forming on surfaces.
Let the chalkboard paint dry completely. I wouldn’t use them for at least 24 hours.
I’m going to bet you find lots of fun uses for these. Here’s what they look like in our house:
Let me know if you try it!
Dr. Marie-Claire Moreau is a college professor who traded in her tenure to become a homeschool mom 20+ years ago. A homeschooling pioneer and the founder of many groups and organizations, she works to advance home education, and is an outspoken supporter of education reform coast to coast. Her book, Suddenly Homeschooling: A Quick Start Guide to Legally Homeschool in Two Weeks, is industry-acclaimed as it illustrates how homeschooling can rescue children and families from the public school system, and how anyone can begin homeschooling within a limited time-frame, with no teaching background whatsoever. A writer, a homeschool leader, and a women’s life coach, Marie-Claire mentors in a variety of areas that impact health, education and lifestyle. A conference speaker, she has appeared at FPEA, H.E.R.I., Home Education Council of America, The Luminous Mind, Vintage Homeschool Moms, iHomeschool Network, and many other events. Her articles have appeared in and on Holistic Parenting, CONNECT,Homefires, Homemaking Cottage, Kiwi, Circle of Moms, and hundreds of sites and blogs nationwide. Marie-Claire can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Both are valuable and fun. But, is one better than the other?
Remember, in homeschool, unschool, or anything-but-government-school, you’re the boss. You decide what works in your home, with your family, within your budget and matches your ideas.
For some, art class includes traditional practices like pencil drawing, pen and ink, watercolor painting, pottery, sculpture, studying architecture and learning about art history. But for others, art class is more a collection of projects requiring many different materials and skills.
Perhaps your family prefers one to the other.
Maybe both approaches work well in your home.
As a homeschooling parent, it doesn’t take long to figure out what your family enjoys most.
As to which is best, the answer depends on where you’d like to see your children end up by high school graduation. Look ahead for a moment. Are your children very young? Is it your belief that very young children require a formal art curriculum? Do you instead prefer to provide your children many different kinds of supplies and set them free to create whatever they like, in their own time, whenever the mood strikes?
Are some of your students “all thumbs”? Are you looking for ways to improve coordination, attention, or other skills?
Do your children exhibit an aptitude or interest in particular art forms? Do they like certain materials, practices, ideas, more than others? Which?
Answers to these kinds of questions will help you decide. Spend a few moments thinking about the children in your homeschool and what could work best for each individual child.
Remember that high schoolers following a traditional or semi-traditional 4-year high school progression generally require traditional art to graduate. Colleges usually assume that applicants have completed traditional art (not crafts) in high school, as well.
The good news is, just like everything homeschool, art class can be modified at any time. Starting out one way but changing horses mid-stream is not only allowed, but common. Do what works, leaving behind what does not.
Above all, remember there are many different ways for children to demonstration talent and creativity — art being only one of them. Many children are eloquent speakers, theatrical performers, creative with their bodies through acrobatics or dance, musically inclined, or have a talent for using words in artistic ways. Remember, too, that art is not a subject that can always be taught on a specific time frame — announcing, “It’s time for art” doesn’t guarantee all students will immediately be able to produce results. Allow children to develop artistically (or not?) in they ways that feel most comfortable to them.
If you’re new to the site or need a list of resources to start curriculum shopping, you’ve come to the right place! Here, you’ll find pages with some of the most popular, widely used, or well-known curriculum products on the homeschool market today. We’ve included some secular, some not, and some religion-neutral products, so you’re sure to find something worth checking out.
Many of these resources have been featured elsewhere on QSH, too — so please dig deeper into the archives to learn more about the different topics if you’d like to know more.
Click on a subject area to get started:
By the way, these pages are periodically updated. Subscribe to the feed or check often to see what’s new!
[Photo: Free Digital]
Imagine being able to make a book entirely on your own and be in total control of what goes inside. Imagine being able to hold that special book in your lap and review all of the special things you learned along the way.
That is exactly what lapbooking is — creating a handmade lesson book, designed to fit in a child’s lap, with all of that child’s learning and creativity all folded up inside.
Lapbooks are enjoyable to plan and creative to build. There is no end to the combination of pages, mini-books, decorative objects or other odds and ends that can be built inside. Plus, they can be designed around any subject or any theme, and contain just as much or as little as a student wants to learn about, document, and put inside.
Though the project isn’t for all kinds of learners, lapbooks are particularly appealing to younger students, those with more artistic tendencies, and children who enjoy project learning above traditional kinds of projects. They can be used for one subject, or several, lending themselves perfectly to the unit study homeschooling approach.
With lapbooks, there is no need to reinvent the wheel — free printable pieces can be found on the Internet. However, families can design and create lapbooks completely on their own, too.
Supplies include nothing more than tabbed file folders, paper for printing plus basic art supplies. Students can go a step further and add scrapbooking or other papers, twine and ribbons, stickers and small decorative objects, and just about anything that can be attached relatively flat into the book.
To learn more about lapbooking, begin with some of these articles and web sites. Then, find others on your own:
There isn’t a parent around that doesn’t have at least one box of priceless keepsakes from when the children were little. Baby shoes, first teeth, refrigerator drawings, greeting cards, photos, hand-prints, and you name it…these are the things that families are made of.
Homeschooling households, however, need to store more than just the usual number of family memories. Particularly in larger families, after homeschooling for a few years, the number of papers and projects can really begin to add up.
That is, if they aren’t tamed right from the start.
The key to taming the paper piles and clutter is two-fold: regular sorting combined with clever storage. The sorting part is up to you, since nobody else can tell you what to save and what to throw away. The storage part, on the other hand, has been perfected by many families before you. That’s where this post comes in.
With so many solutions on the market today, there is no excuse for not finding just the right container for saving and storing homeschooling memories. By shopping the retail stores, home improvement centers, and even dollar stores, it’s easy to find something for every style and budget.
Not only can storage be functional, as in these kinds of containers:
But it can also be attractive, like these:
You can get creative with storage:
And even downright funky:
Storing homeschooling memories can be fun. Have the kids help choose what to save and where they’d like to keep it. Purchase matching containers to create a whole storage system, or scatter containers throughout the house, wherever they fit, or anywhere they look great.
Do you have any great storage ideas to share?
[The photos in this article are all public domain, except the last one, which was borrowed from Target online – I hope they don’t mind!]
One of the fun parts of homeschooling is being able to use all kinds of resources to teach all kinds of things. The best thing is when the resource is more like a toy than a teaching tool. When that happens, kids have fun without even realizing they’re learning.
These color paddles are a good example. They’re pretty basic, really, just some colored plastic pieces that can be used in many different ways. Turns out they are highly addictive – once you pick them up and start playing, they’re hard to put down!
Shown here is a small set that can be purchased from Carolina Biological for under $10 , but you can find larger and different sets elsewhere, some including different colors and even filters, too.
Ideas for these include color mixing, like what students do with paints on a palette, and light experiments using flashlights or a bright sunny window. Pieces can be separated and used to make some pretty crazy sunglasses, too!
[I am in no way affiliated with Carolina Biological and haven’t received any reward for featuring this product. I just wanted to share another great find with you.]
In addition to traditional subjects like reading and math, homeschoolers often like to add fine art to the home education program. Including experiences in painting, drawing, graphic arts, or sculpture adds another dimension to the curriculum and allows children to express themselves in different formats than just traditional school work alone.
For some students, art classes are just fun and add variety to the school day. For other students, however, art classes better support the way they learn and let them apply skills and talents that they’re unable to demonstrate in other classes. No matter a child’s learning style or intelligences, it appears there is universal appeal to learning some kind of art, illustrated by the many homeschooling families who do it.
Homeschool art can be taught in several ways, either inside or outside of the home. Some families choose to enroll children in art classes at museums or art galleries, while others participate in classes taught by parents in homeschooling cooperatives (“co-ops”). When teaching art at home, families can purchase pre-packaged art courses or create projects on their own, depending on their talents and existing art supplies on hand.
The homeschool marketplace offers a full line of art books and art curriculum; thus, all parents need to do is scroll through the lists of options available from stores like ROCK Solid and Rainbow Resource.
Some of the more popular titles you’ll find include:
Artistic Pursuits Curriculum for Creativity
Drawing Basicswith Thomas Kinkade
Art Adventures at Home Levels 1, 2, and 3
Atelier DVD art instruction program
I can do all things from How Great Thou Art
Life Pac Art set
Susan Striker’s Anti-Coloring Books
Usborne’s Complete Book of Art Ideas
and plenty of others, too.
Keep in mind that “art” is different from “crafts”, although both can be beneficial and used together or separately throughout the school year. Also note that it doesn’t take an expert to teach art at home. Many of the resources listed offer detailed step-by-step instructions, illustrations, and even videos, making even the “least artistic” parent feel confident about teaching the course with little or no experience.
[Source: Teaching Homeschool Art]
Perhaps you know someone who is a very “hands-on” kind of person. When asked to characterize that person, you might say that they prefer to do things, as opposed to just watching them, hearing about them, or reading about them.
That is really what being “hands-on” is. People like this like to jump right in and experience something, rather than just thinking about it or talking about it. Do you have a child like this? Are you like this?
In the homeschooling world, being hands-on can be a very good thing. There are many ways to incorporate your child’s love for hands-on activities into her homeschooling day. As a matter of fact, the children who enjoy hands-on projects often learn better this way, too. So, including more hands-on activities means more fun and increased learning, too.
What are some applications of hands-on learning at home? Probably the most obvious is conducting science labs. Using products, tools, and methods in a step-by-step way to discover something about science is about as hands-on as it gets! Other examples include using shapes and pieces for learning about math and creating art instead of just looking at pictures. Once you begin to think in terms of hands-on, you’ll find many other ways, too.
Try to recognize if you have a child in your homeschool who enjoys hands-on kinds of learning. If you aren’t particularly hands-on, this may initially be a little bit hard to spot. But once you recognize this learner, see what you can do to incorporate more hands-on activities into that child’s daily schooling.
Among the many ways that families choose to homeschool, many of these involve outside time or, “nature studies”, relying on experiences in the physical world to spark the curiosity of children and ignite learning about something new.
Many families are familiar with Charlotte Mason’s work, and build regular outside time into the homeschooling schedule every day. No matter whose philosophy you endorse, how often you get out, and where you live for that matter, there is always something interesting to see – and study – in the outdoors.
The fellow in this photo stopped at my home recently to grab some lunch. Imagine the questions, examination and research that took place over the 45 minutes or so as my family watched his lunch disappear, and again later in the day as we discovered lost binoculars, flipped through field guides and re-read reptile pamphlets we had tucked away from our last visit to the state park.
Anyone can make outside time a regular and important part of learning. It’s easy, inexpensive and immediately applicable to real life.