My kids all love art, so I was thrilled to review Art for Children, Building a Visual Vocabulary from ARTistic Pursuits, Inc. This is a title in their series, ARTistic Pursuits Art Instruction Books with DVD and Blu-Ray.
What Is This Product?
A hardcover book with both a DVD and Blu-Ray, this book provides introductory art instruction to young students. The lessons cover key concepts such as shapes, lines, colors, composition, and more. These are key concepts for children to learn.
The majority of the lessons are text-based. There’s typically an image for students to study, and some questions about it to help them think more critically about it. Then there’s instruction on how to complete a project.
Some lessons are video based. The videos are well done and helped provide instruction. It was nice for the kids to see someone else doing what they were going to be doing.
What Else Do You Need?
Since this is an art curriculum, you will need art supplies. Prior to starting, I purchased some watercolor crayons, graphite pencils, construction paper, oil pastels, and a few other supplies.
I’d never heard of watercolor crayons before this, but they are incredible. You color with one like a crayon, and then use a paint brush and water. It smooths and blends beautifully!
My kids love them! The first several lessons focus on watercolor crayons, so they’ve gotten a lot of use and enjoyment.
Here are some pictures of my kids working with watercolor crayons and their finished work with them:
How Did We Use This Product?
I planned on doing an art lesson each week, but my kids enjoyed them and didn’t think that was enough. So we moved at a bit faster pace, often completing two lessons a week.
The first time we watched a video lesson, I kept hitting pause to let the kids catch up. After that attempt, I discovered it’s better to let the video play fully so we get a “big picture” understanding of the whole process. Then we jump into the art portion and review the video if needed.
The videos also talked about the importance of caring for your brushes by cleaning them properly, and putting your supplies away so they don’t get lost or broken. That’s a message that’s always nice to hear! 😀
What We Thought of the Lessons
The lessons were short, and easy to follow. I appreciated the details provided that made teaching easy for me. Each took about thirty minutes.
My kids really enjoyed art time with these lessons. The lesson on creating paper collages was a hit in our house. Here’s what they created:
The lessons built off of one another. There were several watercolor crayons in a row, helping the kids to get proficient with them. Then there were several construction paper projects. If you’re buying art supplies on a budget, I found this very helpful! I wouldn’t have had to purchase everything all at once.
I also appreciated that there was instruction about art appreciation, and helping students to learn more about the history of art. Often the images used in the book were famous paintings from a particular time in history. These were then connected to the project the kids did, helping them to bring art history to life.
Art for Children, Building a Visual Vocabulary is definitely written with younger kids in mind. The lessons are written in kid friendly language, and they might seem overly simple to an older child.
That said, my teen eagerly participated in each project. She just made her works a bit more in depth than the younger kids. I also had toddlers create along with us. They may not have done quite as well, but they really had a fun time. So, it was a fun program for all of us.
There are other titles in this series, looking at art from different periods of history. The periods covered are ancients, middle ages, and Renaissance, so these would mesh well with history lessons from the same time periods.
To see what other reviewers thought of titles in the ARTistic Pursuits Art Instruction Books with DVD and Blu-Ray, please click on the banner below.