The Art of Fall- Mixed Media Workshop & More Plans for High School Art

The Art of Fall Mixed Media WorkshopThis post contains affiliate links. I was given participation in the workshop in exchange for some posts. Thanks for your support!

As some of you know, our ninth grader’s homeschool curriculum includes a one credit art course. In fact, if you could look at her four year high school plan, you would know it features both a one credit art course and a one credit sewing and design course annually. Today’s post is all about The Art of Fall- Mixed Media Workshop & More Plans for High School Art.

High School Four Year Art Plans

While I knew that Rebecca wanted art incorporated into her high school curriculum, I wasn’t sure what it would look like. Here are a few things we knew for sure:

  • One high school credit is roughly three hours of course work a week- however she chooses to work on her art, it has to total three hours over the week.
  • Rather than working sequentially through technique in a program, she wants to try modules of various learning experiences.
  • Traditional art concepts and themes embedded into whatever she is working on
  • Learn new skills- try different media, perfect techniques, and generally press the envelope to keep learning new concepts and skills.

The Art of Fall- Mixed Media WorkshopPlans for 9th Grade One Credit Art Course

With our criteria in mind, I met with her to discuss some of the ideas I had for what she could use and she came to me with a request. The entire year is not planned out- yet. The first semester is almost taken care of and as opportunities become available, we’ll be able to fill up the second half of the year. So far her art course uses the following:

  • Mixed Media Pen, Ink, & Watercolor – a course from Craftsy. This is one she requested. Rebecca faithfully follows their blog and we’ve taken other Craftsy classes for sewing. She loves the pen and ink.
  • Sketch Tuesday- Weekly art prompts from Barb Harmony Fine Arts
  • Pablo Picasso Art & Artist Study- Also from Harmony Fine Arts
  • Dots & Lines- 10 Week (one hour) homeschool co-op class
  • The Art of Fall Mixed Media Workshop- This is a new addition to our line up and one Rebecca is really excited about. She loves mixed media and can hardly wait to get started on this fall themed mixed media workshop.

The Art of Fall- Mixed Media WorkshopThe Art of Fall Mixed Media Workshop

This 4 week e-course video workshop is offered by Alicia Gratehouse at Flourish. Every Monday morning beginning on October 6, 2014 your 10+ year olds can immerse themselves in creative activity with a fall theme. There are over 20 Projects in all! We’re looking forward to:

  • Having access to the class for one year- so we can work at our own pace.
  • Signing on for the class and receiving a materials list right away so you have time to gather supplies before October 6th.
  • Enjoying over 20 projects which stretch her art abilities into new areas
  • Experiencing mixed media projects with sketching, acrylic painting, watercolor painting, chalkboard art, collage art, sculpting, hand lettering, art journaling, etc.
  • Learning poetry, the people behind the art, and fall recipes
  • Art based on the autumn season with march butterflies, changing leaves, etc.

Best of all, if you sign up for the The Art of Fall- Mixed Media Workshop for Kids through September 30, 2014 you can pay the early registration free of $36. The regular price after September 30, 2014 is $48.

What are your plans for art this year? Do you have the supplies? Visit Must Have Art Supplies for a Project Based Homeschool for ideas on what to purchase. We’ve added a few to our list based on The Art of Fall-  Mixed Media Workshop for Kids- gesso and painty pens.

All students need some art in their life. Will you join us?

The Art of Fall- Mixed Media Workshop

 

Must Have Art Supplies for a Project Based Homeschool

Blog, She Wrote: Must Have Art Supplies for a Project Based Homeschool

This post may contain affiliate links. Thanks for your support!

A well-stocked art closet is a great boon to any project based learning in your home. Whether you have a serious artist or a casual dabbler, the right tools can make all the difference in the quality of the finished product. Enjoy a look at our Must Have Art Supplies for a Project Based Homeschool.

The Importance of Quality Art Supplies

Most of us have a limited budget for all of our homeschool needs and it’s very tempting to save money whenever we can. Resist the urge to buy the cheap art supplies. While it’s ok to go middle of the road with younger children, it can be frustrating, even to young artists, to work with inferior materials.

  • Cheap crayons are more wax than color- go for Crayola or something better.
  • Cheap markers run out quickly and leave little color on the page.
  • Cheap paint brushes are great for spreading glue but on a painting they leave bristles behind on the page.
  • Cheap glue doesn’t adhere for long and the pages fall apart.
  • Cheap water colors don’t show up when you use them. That includes Crayola brand!
  • Cheap paper or paper which isn’t meant for the medium will rip or get too wet.
  • Cheap colored pencils break easily and lack pigment.

Now that we’ve established what NOT to purchase, let’s talk about the good stuff. Even young children benefit from some level of quality supply. It’s very frustrating to young artists to not see color when they make a line. Later in this post I’ll discuss ways to manage the supplies and how to train children to use them well.

Blog, She Wrote: Must Have Art Supplies for a Project Based HomeschoolEssential Watercolor Supplies

As my children have grown, the “go to” watercolor supplies have changed. Once you enjoy the more sophisticated watercolors, you won’t want to go back! This is our list of must haves:

  • Watercolor pencils- We have used Prang and Prismacolor. There is not contest. Prismacolor is the BEST. The pigments are rich and the difference is huge. For younger kids, the Prang are great to get started with but they are less versatile in their use.
  • Watercolor Trays- Prang brand is THE best for this medium. Even very young children will enjoy a tray of these. The pigment is deep and it makes a mark every time. Of course, training preschoolers to use them correctly is entirely another issue!
  • Watercolor Tubes- After discovering these for the first time, my artist hasn’t gone back to the tray. The pigments cannot be beat and the result is amazing. You can find inexpensive tubes at any craft store. If you have a watercolor loving artist, you can try more expensive brands to see the difference. It’s worth exploring!
  • Watercolor Paper- We’ve been using watercolor paper for years. I buy it by the pack at Discount School Supply. It’s a nice weight and seems to work well. We use it for any watercolor painting.
  • Brushes- I recommend nice brushes for any painting. You can buy the packaged kind for younger kids, but avoid the super cheap ones. They are terrible at spreading paint! I reserve those for glue and other messy projects. Just make sure the brush is rated for watercolor. I also invested in open stock brushes from the art store and my artist adores them.

Blog, She Wrote: Must Have Art Supplies for a Project Based Homeschool

Supplies for Acrylic Painting

I’ve been using acrylic paint for craft projects for a long time. My kids use them for various craft projects, but this year was the first time I approached artist quality acrylics and swoon! These are amazing. What’s necessary for acrylic painting?

  • Craft Acrylics- These are super for small scale projects where you want thinner paint. Painting on wood is a great example. My 16yo has used them to customize minifigs and they are a useful all around paint.
  • Tube Acrylics- Smooth and thick, these are a dream to work with. There are several brands offered at most art stores. Any of them will work well. You can purchase small tubes, but they don’t go a long way. I suggest the larger ones so you can have fun with color mixing and not worry about running out.
  • Spray Acrylic- Our model rocket kid loves to use spray paint to customize his rockets.
  • Acrylic Palette- This is a must have tool for painting! Rebecca mixes paint like a pro with this tool and uses it any time she pulls out her paints. She even uses it with her tube watercolors.
  • Stretched Canvas- Makes a great substrate for acrylic paints and produces a lovely result which is easy to hang up and enjoy.

Blog, She Wrote: Must Have Art Supplies for a Project Based Homeschool

Drawing Supplies for Your Homeschool

Preschoolers on up love to draw. What supplies do you have on hand for this small pleasure? This is our list of must haves:

  • Sketch Pencils- Various grades of graphite pencils which are used in sketching, portraits, and illustrating. We bought the kit to have all the grades along with the kneadable eraser and the sharpener.
  • Charcoal Pencils- Usually have pencils and a charcoal stick for drawing
  • Colored Pencils- We love the Prismacolor brand pencil. You can’t beat it for smooth drawing and great color. Consider having Crayola around for easy access, any time drawing and save the Prismacolor for art projects. When our kids are old enough, they use the better quality pencils for all their work.
  • Kneadable Eraser- Great for removing lines made from sketch & charcoal pencils. You can also use them to blend lines.
  • Polymer Eraser- Erasers that don’t leave residue behind or tear paper
  • Drawing Paper- We like the white sulphite drawing paper from Discount School Supply. The 50 lb weight paper can handle wet and dry media and has a really nice texture.
  • Blender Pencils- For blending and softening hard lines in colored pencil work. Very enjoyable!
  • Chalk Pastels- These are a favorite for everyone in our house. On the messy side but so forgiving!
  • Oil Pastels- You have to be careful with these, but they are fun to layer and try. I have kids who prefer these over any thing else.
  • Pen & Ink- This is a new medium for us and one that Rebecca adores! She is taking the Craftsy class on Mixed Media: Pen, Ink, & Watercolor. India ink is waterproof so you can use watercolor paints with it.

Blog, She Wrote: Must Have Art Supplies for a Project Based Homeschool

Essential Types of Paper to Have on Hand

There are all kinds of paper to use in art and I like to have several sizes on the shelves for my kids to choose from. Some of these papers we’ve had in the house since your kids were tiny. Others are new additions as our children have aged. Which are your favorites?

  • Watercolor Paper- A must for using watercolor paints. We’ll often paint on the paper and use the paper for other art projects. The lovely texture conveyed on watercolor paper can be used in surprising ways! And yes, even if no project is assigned I’ll give the kids some paper to play with- I pull out plain wet media paper too, but some get to be on the real thing. (see link above)
  • Drawing Paper- 50 lb weight for mixed media. That means you can use wet materials or plain drawing materials on this paper. It’s robust and universal. (see link above)
  • Tissue Paper- I buy it in both pre-cut squares and sheets for a variety of uses. When my children were really young, they would make tissue paper collages in their high chairs by sticking paper from their pile onto face up Contact paper. Always a treat!
  • Sulphite Construction Paper- High quality construction paper which doesn’t crack and fade. Good stuff!
  • Long (12×18) Paper- In white or basic colors for projects requiring larger paper but not poster board.
  • Butcher Roll Paper- Long rolls of paper make creation endless! We have used this roll for everything from murals to wrapping paper. When my kids were little, I would set them up on the floor in the kitchen with a long piece and lot of coloring supplies. On our itty bitty kitchen floor, they would be happy while I made dinner. I get the 50lb weight so they can do wet and dry media. This paper makes great easel paper for preschoolers too. It will last for many years. Our first one lasted 12 years!
  • Sketch Pads- I especially like smaller ones with really hard covers so we can sketch on the go. These make wonderful nature journals and art journals where your artist can try methods and materials and create often.

Blog, She Wrote: Must Have Art Supplies for a Project Based Homeschool

Must Have General Tools for Art

Some of this list can be found in our other lists, but they are important and I have more to add!

  • Scissors- Pointed Fiskars are reliable and as little hands grow, adult paper scissors are very useful.
  • Painter’s Tape- Rebecca likes to use tape for creating negative space in a painting and for making frames (once the tape is removed) and other painting techniques.
  • Adhesives- Of all kinds. Check out Must Have Supplies for an Authentic Project Based Homeschool for our list of favorites adhesives!
  • Acrylic Palette- In case you missed it on the acrylic list because it cannot be beat for color mixing and access to paint. (see link above)
  • Canvas Board & Stretched Canvas- Take a break from paper and try canvas substrates. Your kids will fall in love! I buy them in bulk from art stores and Discount School Supply.
  • Erasers- Both kneadable and polymer (see link above)
  • Brushes- Open stock brushes in several shapes and styles go a long way in the world of paint. They are usually rated for more than one medium and they are better quality brushes. The right brush can make the result stunning.

Blog, She Wrote: Must Have Art Supplies for a Project Based Homeschool

Art Supplies for Young Children

I know some of you aren’t ready to dive into sophisticated art supplies because your children are young. Here are a few ideas for young artists.

  • Biocolor Paints- From Discount School Supply. They can be used many different ways and they come with really cool additives to make the paint puffy, glittery, and shimmery. The shimmer is my personal favorite!
  • Tempera Paints- I have primary colors only along with black and white so we can do some color mixing.
  • Craft Cups- Actually, I use these even with my older kids. They contain glue and paint very well and I don’t have to worry about cleaning them up! They work for doing group activities.
  • Craft Supply List- My preschooler what to have on hand list with lots of ideas on craft time with the younger crowd. (enjoy an early post from 2008)

Access to Project Based Homeschool Supplies

How often do you “let” your students get into the supplies? This is a great question and one that I think we all must consider. Are you a mom who wants things just right and so you often say no when a child asks for some time with the materials? Or do you throw caution to the wind and say, “Yes!”? Here are a few things to keep in mind when considering the use of school supplies:

  • Have a Stash of Supplies That Are YES Supplies- They can be used any time a child asks for them. These should be things you don’t have to supervise closely and are safe for kids and their surroundings.
  • Establish a Place Where They Can Use Supplies without Worry- This is especially true for the mom who has trouble with yes. If you establish a spot early on, then everyone can be more relaxed.
  • Train Good Supply Behavior from Early on- This may seem difficult or over the top, but it pays off in the end. I have some pretty independent kids who have never been wild with the art supplies. Take the time to work on the art culture in your home and see it take shape.
  • Make Sure to Bring out the Special Supplies- If you keep the good stuff separate, then make sure you actually use the nice stuff on occasion. Make sure any time you are supervising art and crafting, that everyone is in the best time of day and ready to be adventurous. No one likes stressed out mama at art time!
  • Project Space- Each of us has project space in our home where we can leave supplies out and get back to work any time. Making time and space for the projects is equally important to providing materials.
  • Art Storage Spaces- I have a cabinet upstairs which holds the quality art supplies and bookshelves in our basement which hold our crafty materials. Both are easily accessible to the kids and generally with in reach.
  • Essential Elements of a Home Learning Environment- What else is important to your school?

We keep many art supplies in our home. Just remember that our inventory was built up over many years. I started accumulating supplies when our 16yo was just 18 months old. He was always ready to enjoy some crafting fun. We’ve been adding on ever since. If budget is a big issue, then purchase just a few high quality materials and they will be put to use.

Above all, you cannot underestimate the power of allowing your kids to have the time, space, and materials to pursue their work. Much of our kids’ best work comes from allowing them to have the time to explore.

Tell us your favorite art supply!

 

Check out my three chapters in The Big Book of Homeschool Ideas. How do you transition from direct instruction to mentoring your teen? Find out by purchasing your own copy!

The Big Book of Homeschool Ideas

 

Homeschool Curriculum Choices 2014-2015

Blog, She Wrote: Homeschool Curriculum Choices 2014-2015

We are gearing up for another homeschool year here at Blog, She Wrote. This post comes just in time to write out the Individualized Home Instruction Plan I’m required to write for all my students for New York State. Here’s a look at our Homeschool Curriculum Choices for 2014-2015:

11th Grade Curriculum

Blog, She Wrote: Homeschool Curriculum Choices 2014-2015

This is the big junior year for our oldest, Ethan. He has a heavy academic schedule in addition to preparing for college bound tests. For the first time, he is enrolled in an online class. We’ve chosen to outsource one class for the sole purpose of having someone else give a grade. I know it will challenge him to meet deadline not given to him by us and a good grade in an online class will give validity to the ones we give him on his transcript. College admissions officers like this!

  • Modern US History- We are using All American History from Bright Ideas Press for a look at modern history in the US.
  • Geography- NorthStar Geography from Bright Ideas Press
  • Worlds of Imagination Fantasy Literature- First semester he will take a Potter’s School class on Fantasy Literature.
  • Worlds of Imagination Science Fiction Literature- Second semester is focused on the world of science fiction.
  • Other Worlds- The science fiction & fantasy module of One Year Adventure Novel. Ethan has been writing his dystopian novel since the spring. It’s coming along well and so far, his writing far surpasses that of his adventure novel.
  • Trigonometry & Calculus- He is in the last quarter of Life of Fred Trigonometry and will begin Life of Fred Calculus this year.
  • Earth Science- We are using CK-12 Earth Science for High School. He is completing credits in chemistry and biology now and will do earth science before he takes physics in his senior year.
  • Spanish- With Rosetta Stone. He is working on 3 credits of a foreign language as required by one of the universities he wants to apply to.
  • Phys Ed- Ethan does a half credit of PE each year and it is mainly comprised of large group games at our homeschool co-op and at youth group. He also mows grass and does yard work for others.
  • Fine Art- He must have one credit of fine art for high school and he does one quarter credit each year by doing computer graphics and other projects for his content area work.
  • Homeschool Co-op- We participate in a ten week, two hour co-op in the spring and fall. This fall he is taking dystopian literature class along with an outdoor games class.
  • Test Prep- We’ll be working with Ethan to study for the PSAT in the fall and the SAT/ACT in the spring. It is time!
  • FLL Mentor- Having aged out of FIRST LEGO League, Ethan is transitioning to team mentor. He’s pretty excited about helping the teams this year as a mentor.
  • Part Time Job- Ethan took on his first part time job last April at a local grocery store. He works as a cashier anywhere from 12-17 hours a week.

This is a heavy academic load fairly typical of a college bound high school junior. Over the last year his energies have focused on writing. Ethan loves to write and would like to explore the possibilities in technical writing and editing. He’s excited to have narrowed his interests down and to have an answer for all those well-meaning inquiries that come his way!

9th Grade Curriculum

Blog, She Wrote: Homeschool Curriculum Choices 2014-2015

Rebecca is our new high schooler! Her four year plan has been laid out with the basics plus a strong emphasis in her areas of interest.

  • Earth Science- She’ll be working with her brother through CK-12 Earth Science for High Schoolers
  • Geography- NorthStar Geography from Bright Ideas Press
  • Cover Story- Finish up this program
  • US History- All American History Volume II, modern history
  • One Year Adventure Novel- She is excited to start her own novel. This curriculum has been a part of our homeschool for over three years now.
  • Pre-Algebra & Beginning Algebra- With Life of Fred. She will continue to work through Algebra skills this year
  • Spanish- Rosetta Stone
  • Art- Rebecca will have a yearly art course with goals listed and a framework laid out. She’s already started with a Craftsy class in pen, ink, and watercolor
  • Sewing & Design II- More design elements and coursework for her pattern drafting and sewing with an emphasis on portfolio work.
  • Health- one quarter credit is required and is accomplished through family discussion and focus on current issues.
  • Homeschool Co-op- Usually sewing and craft classes when they are available.
  • Phys Ed- a half credit per year which is done through regular weekly activities such as large group games and seasonal activities.

 7th Grade Curriculum

Blog, She Wrote: Homeschool Curriculum Choices 2014-2015

Our 7th grader, is a huge fan of planes, rockets, and anything flight. Using Adventures in the Sea & Sky from WinterPromise seemed like a great fit for him and a nice transition from unit studies to more traditional approaches to learning.

  • Adventures in the Sea & Sky- This is a fantastic look at the history of sailing and flight throughout time- explorers, scientists, sailors, inventors, pilots. Anyone and anything that shaped the way we live today by their pioneering in these areas.
  • Cover Story- He will be finishing his magazine with Cover Story by the creator of One Year Adventure Novel.
  • Physics & PreAlgebra- with Life of Fred Physics and Pre-Algebra texts.
  • Earth Science- Primarily within the studies of sea and sky which will include oceanography & space sciences.
  • Phys Ed- Large group games weekly, bike riding
  • Homeschool Co-op- Which includes FLL and games this fall
  • FLL- He will be on a FIRST LEGO League team for the first time this year.

4th Grade Curriculum

We have one last elementary school student and he is sharp. Here are our plans for him:

  • Adventures in the Sea & Sky- He will be working with Isaac on this study and it will be interesting to see how they work together and how they will follow their interests.
  • Math with Life of Fred- He will begin the intermediate series and we’ll shore up skills in preparation for Fractions in 5th grade.
  • Language Arts- Focus on paragraph writing and short reports on our own and with WriteShop Junior D.
  • Homeschool Co-op- He loves to take whatever science classes are offered and this year will be in the FLL class as well.
  • FLL- He is a new member of our FLL team this year!
  • Engineering- Always an elective for him, he will have project time. It might be building or exploring or computer programming or solving a problem/making something better. But, he cannot be stopped!

Work Together with Multiple Ages

I always like to include time when all four of our children will learn together. Having been a unit study family only for a long time, our kids come from a homeschool background of working together and learning alongside one another. Though, we prefer to let each of our students work in their niche, we like to come together on some things. This year it’ll happen in a few areas.

  • Reading Aloud- I like to begin our day with this or use it as a tool to refocus on the work at hand.
  • Earth Science- The high schoolers will be working on the CK-12 course while the younger two boys will be doing oceanography and space science (both considered pieces of earth science) as part of Sea & Sky.
  • Geography- Once again, the high schoolers will be studying NorthStar Geography and the younger boys will tag along. I want to see how the course pans out for younger students- particularly late elementary.
  • Art- We do lots of art projects together which I love to use to adorn our walls!
  • Discussion/Collaboration- One of the things we are good at in our homeschool is collaborating with each other even now that our kids are not all working on the same level or curriculum. Asking for opinions and advice, starting discussions and review, and seeking expertise from others is something we encourage our kids to do daily.

How to Enhance Any Curriculum

Blog, She Wrote: How to Homeschool with a KindleWe have had huge success with using a Kindle in our homeschool. Both the eReader and the Fire have been assets to our learning for over a year, but especially after our three youngest kids all got Kindle Fires for Christmas last year. Learn all the ways we use Kindles in our homeschool.

We are looking forward to a new start. It’s exciting to think about what a new year brings!

Other bloggers from the iHN are sharing their curriculum choices for this year. Have a look around and be encouraged!

nbtsbloghopcalendar2014Don’t forget to drop in and enter the Geography Learning Tools Basket Giveaway through August 7, 2014.

Big Book of Homeschooling