I will confess that art used to intimidate me when I was a child. I wasn’t good at it. I struggled to be creative in art class in school. I couldn’t draw, paint, or sculpt. I was so logical that I really didn’t know how to be creative.
As an adult, I learned all about the elements of art from a college student, when I had the privilege of hosting a teacher intern who majored in art. Suddenly, art didn’t seem so intimidating any more.
Once I understood the elements of art, then I could better appreciate artwork. I now knew specific things that I was able to think about and discuss as I studied art. When I taught my students, they could also understand these elements of art, even if they were not naturally creative or artistic themselves.
Fast-forward 15 years to homeschooling my own children: I first begin by teaching them about the elements of art. It gives us great topics as we study famous artist’s patterns in their work. We also compare and contrast how artists each use the elements differently.
If you are curious about these elements of art, they are quite easy to teach with Evan-Moor’s How to Teach Art to Children. This book has activities to both teach and practice each element for children in grades 1-6.
My children have found these activities to be engaging and fun. There is a good balance of instruction and freedom for personal creativity. Here is an example of the bookmarks we made using the element of line to create interest.
Evan-Moor has given you everything you need to teach your child about these elements of art:
I also really like how this book has two parts: one part to teach about the elements and the second part provide opportunities for students to use the elements. Teaching with this two-part method helps the child first understand each element. Then, the child will have an opportunity to apply his or her understanding of this element in a focused way.
As a formerly art-challenged student myself, I really appreciate how the assignments set the kids up to be successful even if they are not naturally artistic. Each child still has the opportunity to use just one element in a simple way in their artwork.
As a budget-conscious homeschooler, I appreciate that this resource can be used each year as a basic art curriculum. Your child can repeat the assignments, but apply new techniques they gain each year as they grow in their knowledge of art elements.
If you subscribe to TeacherFileBox (Evan-Moor’s digital online library), How to Teach Art to Children is included in your membership as well.
How to Teach Art to Children is well worth your time as a resource that will help your child be creative, and also understand and discuss all types of artwork with others.
Amy Michaels is a certified teacher with 11 years of elementary classroom experience who is actively homeschooling her own children. Her mission is share the best teaching methods and resources with all homeschoolers. Amy supports parents through her podcasts, webinars, and online training for homeschoolers on her website www.thrivehomeschooling.com.