Thursday, May 12, 2016

ARTistic Pursuits Inc. K-3 Book One Review

My family had the privilege of trying the ARTistic Pursuits Inc. K-3 Book One for this review to use in conjunction with our own homeschool curriculum. This is a Schoolhouse Review Crew Review. All opinions expressed are my own or those of my family.

ARTistic Pursuits Inc. creates art curriculum for children. This full-color curriculum helps children to grow their skills of observation and critical thinking. It teaches all components of fine art, including creativity, art history, art appreciation, and art techniques. This unique homeschool art program permits the student to be expressive and make up their own decision about what and how they will draw, paint, or sculpt.

The Early Elementary K-3 Book One is one of the many art curriculum books you can purchase from ARTistic Pursuits Inc. This Introduction to the Visual Arts book is by Brenda Ellis. It has a comb-binding that allows the book to stay flat when open.

It is 95 pages long with 36 five to ten minute lessons. The lessons are accompanied by 185 illustrations and full-color works from master artists. They cover four different groups: drawing, painting (watercolor), paper art, and clay. Each group has a selection of things that are listed on a materials page that you will need in addition to the book for your student to do the projects. Each project is given a group number and list of items so that there are no surprises and you can be prepared before each lesson. Projects take thirty to sixty minutes, depending upon child's method and how much they can focus without getting distracted. Additional items are listed as well for each group that you should have at hand.

Art Supplies Needed to Buy For Use With This Book:

GROUP #1 DRAWING (lessons: 3, 6, 8, 9, 10, 14, 17, 19, 20, 21, 22, 25, 26, and 29)
  • two ebony pencils
  • vinyl eraser
  • soft pastels (set of 12, not professional grade)
  • oil pastels (Cray-Pas, Junior Artist, set of 25)
  • sketch or drawing paper pad
GROUP #2 PAINTING (lessons: 1, 2, 4, 5, 7, 11, 12, 13, 18, 24, and 35)
  • Caran d'ache Neocolor II Water-soluble Watercolor Crayons (set of 10)
  • #8 round watercolor brush that comes to a point
  • Canson XL watercolor paper pad (30 sheets)
GROUP #3 PAPER ART (lessons: 15, 16, 28, 32, 34, and 36)
  • heavy-weight, fade-proof construction paper (assorted colors including black)
  • tissue paper (assorted colors)
  • scissors (Fiskars for children are recommended)
GROUP #4 CLAY (lessons: 23, 27, 28, 30, and 31)
  • 5lbs. gray self-hardening clay (option to substitute red self-hardening clay for lesson 28 and white self-hardening clay or a flour dough recipe for lesson 23)

This book is parted out into three sections. These sections are: What Artists Do, What Artists See, and Where We Find Art. In the What Artists Do section are chapters 1-14 (fourteen lessons) in which the student explores activities artists do when making art. This section also teaches the student the proper way to use watercolor crayons, pastels, and pencil in drawing and painting landscapes, people, and still life. In the What Artists See section are chapters 15-21 (seven lessons) in which the student explores elements that artists use in two and three dimensional work such as shape, form, line, and color. This section teaches the child to handle scissors, glue, fold paper forms, draw materials, and use a brush while doing collage, paper works, drawing, and color mixing. In the Where We Find Art section are chapters 22-36 (fifteen lessons) in which the student explores places we find art, like: caves, pyramids, cathedrals, etc., covering ancient art of prehistoric times to book illumination of the Middle Ages. This section teaches the child to use chalk pastels, oil pastels, clay, and paper works while making murals, pottery, clay models, paper art, bookbinding, and mosaics.

How We Used This and Our Thoughts:

Since Teela (my 8 year old daughter), Zari (my 5 year old daughter), and I only had six weeks before this review was due to explore the ARTistic Pursuits Inc. Early Elementary K-3 Book One, we only had time to do a part of the first section. I didn't have the money to get all the art supplies I needed all at once, so I bought the ones I was told I would need for the first set of lessons. This happened to be just three supplies: the Caran d'ache Neocolor II Water-soluble Watercolor Crayons (set of 10), a #8 round watercolor brush, and a Canson XL watercolor paper pad (30 sheets). I got them at a discount by clicking the Blick U button at the bottom of the art supply packs page on the ARTistic Pursuits Inc. website.

Some of the art Zari did with the watercolor crayons.

The lesson projects build on themselves and so we went in the order they were presented and did one lesson a week. We found though that by lesson 3 (and also for lesson 6) we needed supplies that we had not purchased ahead of time. So, instead of the ebony pencil, vinyl eraser, and sketch/drawing pad we were forced to use regular pencils, a pink rubber eraser, and copy paper. It was all I had at home at the time and we do not have an art supply store near us. These alternate supplies worked just fine, in my opinion. Each section does, however; stand on its own and can be done in any order. To get the most out of the material you should finish a whole section.

Some of the art Teela did with the watercolor crayons.

My girls loved the short lessons about What Artists Do and projects that followed. They loved using the watercolor crayons the most because it was a new experience for them and they love to paint. The layout was really easy to follow. First I would read them the lesson. Then I would read to them about a famous artist composition or other observations in the book while they looked at it and answered questions about it . Next I would read about the project they would be completing and show them the pictures of examples in the book and then they would do the project once I handed out the materials.

ARTistic Pursuits Inc. K-3 Book One is a wonderful introduction book for kindergartners through third graders to the visual arts. It is a thorough art curriculum for this age. I enjoyed teaching these lessons and my girls enjoyed learning and being artistic making different watercolor art and drawing. We are excited to do more and experience other mediums like clay and paper working.

The Early Elementary K-3 Book one is $47.95 and can be purchased through the ARTistic Pursuits Inc. website. ARTistic Pursuits Inc. has other art instruction books in Sculpture Techniques, Elementary Art, Middle School Art, and High School Art as well that you can purchase.

Art materials are required for the Early Elementary K-3 Book One. You can find most of these at your local craft store. There is also an Art Supply Pack for each book sold on the ARTistic Pursuits Inc. website. The price for the Art Supply Pack which includes all the art supplies you need for the K-3 Book One is $89 + $13.50 for priority flat rate (medium box) shipping & handling. The art supply pack includes all of the art supplies needed plus an I'm an artist! cotton tote bag to put it all into. You can also buy these art supplies individually when you need them at a discount by clicking the Blick U button at the bottom of the art supply packs page on the ARTistic Pursuits Inc. website.

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1 comment:

sjones said...

This is a great review! I really appreciated the extra part about supplies and lessons, thanks!