Monday, April 21, 2008

On the Subject of Art

I am not a very creative type person, and definitely am not artsy. I have difficulty thinking outside of the box, so when it comes to teaching art, I need help and lots of pictuers (I am a visual learner). With 5 children, I also need something that is not consumable (except supplies of course) that I can use over again. Here are some books that I have found very helpful.

For learning art techniques:

Evan-Moor's "How to teach Art to Children"
This book teach's color, line, texture etc. It also has a section of books recommended for art appreciation and then projects that you can do to imitate that artist. Evan-Moor also has a good book called "ArtWorks" that are projects that you can do with your children.

Another good book for children to learn art by styles & artist is "Discvoering Great Artists: Hands-on Art for Children in the Styles of the Great Masters" by MaryAnn F. Kohl & Kim Solga

There are seems to be a lot of good books on art appreciation being published for children. One series that I recently discovered (I had heard of it before, but not checked it out until recently) is "Come Look with Me". We are currently using there book on Art in Early America. It contains about a dozen pictures from different well known artists. Devoting one picture to a page and on the opposite page it contains some questions about the picture and then a short biography on the artists life.

For very young children (preschool to early elementary...although my 9yo loves them to) are the "Katie" series by James Mayhew. They include: "Katie and the Impressionists", "Katy and the Sunday Afternoon", "Katie and the Mona Lisa" just to name a few. They are cute stories about a girl named Katie and her grandmother who go to the art museum. While they are looking around (Grandma is usually dozing on a bench), it shows Katy going inside the pictures and having an adventure.

If you want to read about individual artists check out the "Anholt's Artist Books for Children" by Laurence Anholt or "Getting to Know the World's Greatest Arists" series by Mike Venezia.

The National Gallery of Art has an extension program where you can borrow their resources for only the cost of return shipping. We used this at the beginning of the year and it was great. We would watch the DVD about the artist, then look at the pictures by that artist that was included and then have my daughter try to imitate something in that style.

If you want a packaged art curriculum here is a list of some that I have seen recommended.

How Great Thou Art
which includes (but is not limited)
God & The History of Art (4 year program)***
I can do all things
Lambs Book of Art

***you can purchase the pictures postcards as well as the painting/marker cards from Millers Pads and Paper (great art supplies resource).....

Artistic Pursuits

Meet the Masters

Artelier (this is a neat art program....I couldnt find it, but there used to be a sample of one of the demo's)

Art Websites:

Masterpiece Art Instruction

Garden of Praise

Every Day Art

National Gallery of Art

Monday, April 14, 2008

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Is the Phantom a Good Guy or a Bad Guy?

We just watched the movie "The Phantom of the Opera" this week, and while I didnt think my children would enjoy an opera, I was actually surprised at there response. The question I kept getting from my children at the end of the movie was "Is the Phantom a Good Guy or Bad Guy". While you not sure you want Christine to end up with him, you are caused to feel sympathy for him.

My boys are typical boys, they love to play firement & army them there are always good guys and bad guys. I try to teach them that God does not want us to kill the bad guys, but teach them about Jesus so they can become good guys.

So my answer to them is that he was both. He was human. He loved Christine, but he let jealousy and anger and bitterness consume and control him and it turned her against him. In the end he shows repentance and asks for forgiveness, which is what God wants us to do.

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

The Hundred Year Lie

Anyone who knows me, knows that despite my inconsistent eating habits, I am very interested in health and nutrition and the affect of processed foods on our body. I recently read the book "The Hundred Year Lie" by Randall Fitzgerald and thought it was one of the best books that I had read for showing a correlation between the introduction of processed foods and synthetic drugs and our nation's current downhill decline of health. Randall Fitzgerald is a newspaper reporter who became interested in the patterns of disease and food through various family members and friends becoming sick.

This books is worth the read for chapter 3 alone which goes through a timeline which shows the low rates of death through cancer, diabetes and asthmas in 1900 and it's gradual rise through the introduction of refined sugar and other processed foods, chemical pesticides as well as the push of drugs from the pharmaceutical industry. While Mr. Fitzgeralds book does focus on the negative effects of these foods/drugs/chemicals in our lives for a majority of the book and some people may call him an alarmist, he does open our eyes to these danger and show us the road on how to detoxify our bodies and set ourselves on the road to health.

If you want more information on eating a healthier diet good book is "What the Bible says about Healthy Living" by Rex Russel, MD.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Be a Pioneer to Mars!

Think I am joking, then check out this link to google's Virgle.

Oh by the way happy April Fool's Day (there really is a link on google)