Teaching Kids Art

Cooper's Farmer's Market

I would consider myself to be an art lover. B.C. (before children), I hit every major museum exhibition in whatever city I happened to live. I made sure to stop into art museums no matter where I traveled, be it NYC, Boston, Orlando or London. My poor husband spent three days of our honeymoon in Paris holed up at the Louvre and the Musee d’Orsay.  He amused himself by making up silly titles for the paintings.

I don’t get to museums and galleries as often as I used to, as the two boys — ages three and five — have lots of energy and loud voices. But I do try to expose them to art in our community when I can. They have their own memberships to the LA County Museum of Art, and we visit The Getty Museum several times a year.

Despite my appreciation for art, I fumble when it comes to encouraging the boys to explore art. They have such passion for reading and science, that I forget to pull out the play-doh, colors and paints except for rare occasions. In fact, I lost our play-doh stash for more than a year while de-cluttering for a party. We only recently found it. Oooops!

Enter the blog TeachKidsArt, which provides easily replicable art lessons for teachers, homeschoolers and parents alike. I stumbled upon this blog via a very creative homeschooling mom, who’s blog I follow. I encourage you to check out her adventures as well at Only Passionate Curiosity.

Back to teaching kids art. Inspired by these two blogs, I decided to introduce the boys to Paul Cezanne and encourage them to use watercolors to paint their own still life of some bananas. This effort was only marginally successful. Finley (the three-year-old) took one look at the bananas and declared himself starving. He wolfed down one of the bananas immediately. Cooper decided to paint the farmer’s market instead of the bananas. Watercolors did not hold their interest, so we went mixed media with watercolor pencils and markers. The whole endeavor lasted about 10 minutes. However, I do feel proud of myself for trying to inject an artistic enterprise into the day.

I’m now following TeachKidsArt and hope the process will prompt me to dust off our art supplies more than once a month.

4 thoughts on “Teaching Kids Art”

  1. Nice! It makes me sad that the arts seem to be disappearing from school (at least they are in Alberta). I’m glad that you are at least trying to teach your kids about art.

    1. Rena, we have the same problem here. I won’t get up on my soapbox, but our schools have been very focused on outcomes and reading, writing and ‘rithmetic. We do a lot of after school learning so we can focus on the fun stuff: arts, sciences, etc. It’s really been a source of inspiration for my writing.

  2. Its all about giving the kids a chance to play with the supplies- Besides, if you look at it from Paul Cezanne’s POV, it takes many, many sittings to finish one painting ;-). Glad you’re having fun!

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