Thanks to the TOS Review Crew, I was given the opportunity to review ARTistic Pursuits.
What Is ARTistic Pursuits?
ARTistic Pursuits is a complete homeschool curriculum for children in preschool all the way through 12th grade. The course teaches children about art technique as well as art appreciation and art history.
Each book (there are 12 so far with another set to release in 2016) sells for $47.95 and offers a full 36 week curriculum. Because the books are non-consumable, they can be used for child after child.
What Is the Format of The Way They See It?
The preschool book, The Way They See It, offers an introduction, “The Nature of Children’s Artistic Development,” that explains to parents the stages children go through developmentally in their artistic pursuits.
There are three sections to each of the 26 chapters in The Way They See It:
Grown-up Talk: This section provides inspiration for parents about teaching their children, especially about art. Some titles include, “It’s About the Process,” “Learning,” and “Those Lovely Scribbles.” Each section is a page long. The very first one, “It’s About the Process,” was especially helpful to me because it reminds parents that at this stage, learning about (and loving) art is more about the process, rather than the product. As a parent, this helped me to relax and just let my kids have fun with the curriculum.
Picture Talk: This section includes a picture by a famous artist and includes questions to ask the children about the portrait and what they see when viewing it.
Discover Art Project: This section includes the instructions for the art project the children will do. Two of our favorites were drawing a pot of flowers and illustrating a story on paper as I read the story to them. (Below is their illustration of “St. George and the Dragon” taken from The Children’s Book of Virtues. PB & J Girl’s picture is on the left; Cuddle Bug’s is on the right.)
What Is Required to Use The Way They See It?
There is a simple list of materials for using The Way They See It. You likely already have many of these items in your home:
- Drawing paper pad, 9″ x 12″
- Construction paper, assorted colors
- Fiskars Scissors, blunt tip
- Elmer’s Glue All, 1.25 oz.
- Crayola washable finger paint, set of 4
- Finger paint paper, 16″ x 12″
- Watercolor paper pad, 9″ x 12″
- Mr. Sketch Scent Markers
- Crayola crayons, set of 96
- Crayola washable watercolors, jumbo, set of 4
- A large roll of white or brown shipping paper
If you don’t want to go to the store and search for the materials yourself (which can be more complicated as you get in the upper ages of the program and need more sophisticated materials), you can always by the supplies from ARTistic Pursuits. For instance, ARTistic Pursuits sells the materials needed for the preschool program for $69.
How We Used ARTistic Pursuits
PB & J Girl (5), who loves art was very excited about this program, but so was Cuddle Bug (4). We used it once a week on days when we wanted to relax like Fridays after a busy week.
Before the lesson, I read the Grown Up Talk section, looked through the entire lesson, and also checked to see that we had all of the available supplies.
We took our time enjoying the lesson, and often after we finished, PB & J Girl wanted to continue working on her art project.
We’ll probably do more than one lesson in a week this summer when we have a lighter load.
I was so impressed with ARTistic Pursuits that when I attended Great Homeschool Conventions recently, I made sure to check out the ARTistic Pursuits booth to look at the book for 4th and 5th graders.
I was just as impressed with that book as I was with the preschool program, so I bought it. This will be Bookworm’s art curriculum for next year, though I think he’ll start working on it in the next few weeks after he finishes most of his school work for the year.