This year has been so much more fun now that we have made the effort to add art every week. Having a daytime schedule has helped as well… but I really think the art has given our year the spice that last year lacked. We have been busy bees this year with homeschooling. Some of the art in our school year consists of a monthly art class (and their art teacher’s assignments), GeeArt, and our KONOS art ideas. For a long time, I felt like I was skimping on art… and that really broke my heart because art was my favorite subject in school. It very well may be my favorite subject still!
I am what you would call an eclectic homeschooler, so I tend to mix and match different styles of homeschooling and curriculums to fit our needs. We are usually studying a loose topical unit-study through KONOS that gives us a basic “theme” to focus on. While we do that topic, I like to throw in many sources (library books, fiction chapter books, movies, field trips, textbooks, geography, timeline characters, writing assignments, journaling, vocabulary, art, etc.). It has been easy incorporating some of our GeeArt “Do Art” assignments into our lessons lately. I love it when I can blend two assignments together into one. It saves time, keeps me moving forward, and makes me feel like the list is “checking itself off”.
I print the PDF “Do Art” lessons off that go along with our GeeArt program as we do our lessons. Sometimes we get to them before the next lesson, other times we don’t. A week or so ago, we were able to use our GeeArt “Do Art” challenge for their lesson on ‘The Message of Art” as a KONOS Unit Study assignment. KONOS asked us to learn about the cycle of metamorphosis that butterfly and moth species go through. GeeArt asked us to create our own comic book to tell a message with art. Mom put her thinking cap on… and a new project was born! The kids were told to create a comic book that tells the cycle of a Monarch butterfly’s miraculous change. The following few scanned pages are from my children’s comic books they made…
During our art class last week, we also got to do a nature-oriented project. It was a bit off-topic for our unit study tastes, but it was really fun! We learned how to watercolor and use salt to create special effects on the paper. Last year we had tried to do a similar project that failed, so it was great to have a teacher who knew the trick to show us what went wrong and teach us the CORRECT method. I happened to be the one who asked the teacher to show us the trick, so she let me paint with the kids! The below painting is my leafy masterpiece. The top leaf is a local one (possibly sycamore) that had an interesting shape, but the bottom leaf (the red one) was drawn from memory. It was of a specific cottonwood leaf (photo to the right) that we found in Arkansas last year. It had the most amazing colors. My photo doesn’t do it justice.
After participating in the art class… I felt like a kid again (just a kid doing something I love to do). Art makes school a lot more like ‘fun’ instead of work. Try it! You might like it! Add some art to your school and watch the positive changes happen right before your eyes.
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