The Genial HearthI’ve just put the kettle on, join me for a cuppa and a chat.
We’ve been ‘doing’ artist study since 2006. At this stage, it basically involves selecting an artist per term (we largely follow the Ambleside Online artist schedule [follow the link to curriculum and scroll down to picture study] but I’ve added some Australian artists, and I think a couple more women), selecting about 6 pictures to focus on (again, we usually follow Ambleside) and making them the computer’s screensaver for the term. (I decided to begin with Ambleside’s schedule because it was somewhere to start—I have very little knowledge in this area! I also thought it was worthwhile to maintain some consistency with their plans so I can make use of the discussion on the mailing list if necessary.)
I’ve now started putting the fortnight’s image up on the TV cabinet—although, this will work better when I get organised enough to have a colour print:-) I’ve just now sorted myself an expanding folder in which to put any colour images I have, so I can actually start collecting them, secure in the knowledge I’m likely to actually be able to retrieve them when they’re required:-)
At this stage, our discussion is fairly limited. Each picture is our focus for about two weeks (if I have them available, we may have more than 6 per term, but we only look closely at six), and in that time we might have a conversation one day about the subject of the picture, or some of the details, another we may talk about the colours. We have rarely looked at them in more detail than this. In the next few months though, I plan to start encouraging narration of the pictures and also talking about the artists a little more. (I’m working on a twelve year cycle of artists. The ones that we have done so far, but have basically skimmed, we will return to when the children are older—and we can investigate more thoroughly.)
This only covers the three main terms of the year. My plan for the Christmas term is to select a picture book artist or photographer for that time.
Of course, there are other artists I would be interested in doing, but I’m not sure where I’ll fit them… Wassily Kadinsky/Edvard Munch/Hans Holbein/John Constable/Henri MatisseFrans Hals/Jan Steen/Francisco de Goya. (Italicised artists are the ones that Ambleside is dropping… that may be a place for me to insert something different.)
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