So, we've been doing more Art Study now that our CC community is taking a break for the summer. It's nice to be able to find the extra time to do things like this!
Art (history) Study, at least how I do it, involves looking at beautiful paintings [or in our case, reprints], I mean really looking and observing. The idea is to help you and your kids develop a relationship with the painting. The longer you look, the more you see!
I tell my kids (and I'm sure this wasn't my idea) that the goal is to create an art museum in your mind. When you want to, you can recall paintings and enjoy them even when you don't have them in front of you! It's the same goal when you memorize Scripture, inspiring quotes, and poetry! We take several minutes observing as many things as we can in each picture. Then we put the pictures away and try to describe them to each other.
For a change, I've been having the kids make a drawing of the picture while they observe. It's amazing the little details they pick out. I didn't even notice people in one of the paintings by Ruisdael, but Bubba did! (This term we are studying 3 pieces each by Jacob van Ruisdael (1628/9-1682) and Pieter de Hooch (1629-1684)).
If you'd like more tips and ideas and the philosophy about Art Study in this way, you can find it over here at AmblesideOnline.
Another reason Art Study is useful?
A while back we went out to breakfast and my daughter, then 4, looks at a painting on the wall and says to me, "Mom! That painting reminds me of The Falls of Tivoli by Fragonard."
This kind of comment is extremely useful for when you're trying to impress strangers.
One of the things I really enjoy about Classical Conversations is that it encourages me to homeschool on topics that I might be tempted to skip. Like earth science. It seems crazy to me that a science major would be so apt to skip these all important subjects! I think it's the MOM in me that skips science though - who needs another mess to clean up?
[Crickets chirping in background.]
That's what I thought.
As I was saying, the fact that my kids get to learn about different science topics and do hands-on experiments each week is a huge bonus.
This semester we are working on earth science. Time to learn about the
layers of the earth! Each kiddo got to make their own earth complete
with inner core, outer core, mantle, crust and hydrosphere! It was a fun
class, as you can see.
I definitely liked that this project was very tactile. Everyone learns in different ways, so I hope these helped the layers of the earth 'stick' in their little brains.
For next time: I think it would've worked better with more contrasting colors of playclay. Also, I used homemade - which was a great consistency but the colors were too similar and tended to run together.
Not surprisingly, there was quite a bit of earth-mashing going on during this science project. I'm surprised some of these globes turned out even remotely spherical!