Thursday, April 12, 2007

Art school

Nothing that I would have previously called "school" happened here today, but a lot of learning certainly went on. (I'm thinking that I've said that more than a few times, lol.) All morning the kids were playing Rainbow. This involved singing the colors of the rainbow and arguing about whether or not indigo was a color of the rainbow and if it really mattered whether you said "purple" or "violet." Do public school 3 and 5 year olds play like that? I'm thinking not, lol.

I finally managed to get everyone fed, dressed, and (somewhat) combed and we headed off to run some errands. We dropped off our money for the 4-H fundraiser that we were supposed to bring to the meeting Tuesday - you know, the one we ditched - and then we spent over an hour and over a hundred, lol, in WalMart. DH had budgeted a decent chunk of our tax refund for new clothes and school supplies. I blew the school supply money the second it hit my account on art & music curricula, so I today I decided to spend a little on some clothes that actually fit the baby. The poor guy can't straighten his legs in most of his jammies, lol. Anyway, I had just gotten some new clothes for myself over Thanksgiving so I decided to donate a portion of my share to the school supply fund.

While I looking at pencils and erasers and sharpeners, Cameron and Cassia kept bringing me every nature of sidewalk chalk, paint, and marker you could imagine. But the thing Cameron wanted the most was a set of 50 multi-tip markers. He's never picked that particular item up before, yet coincidentally, Drawing with Children suggests using a large assortment of fine and broad tip markers for your work. Of course they suggest using a better quality brand than Crayola, lol, but I took it as a sign. So I grabbed that and a sketch pad and strengthened my resolve that we would tackle the lessons in Drawing with Children sooner (as in this summer) rather than later. I just have the feeling that alternating drawing instruction with art appreciation, as WTM suggests, will be counter-productive for us. I think that if we can arm ourselves with some drawing skills first, the whole Classical Education & notebooking process will go easier.

As soon as we got home, Cameron dove into the markers. He drew 5 or 6 pictures in record time, lol. I asked them if they wanted to do a "drawing exercise" and they were both eager to do it. We did the Abstract Design Warm-Up from DWC. Isn't it funny the different pictures that come from the exact, same instructions??? They were both surprisingly good at following directions, but Cameron just did NOT want to color anything in. He's never liked to color, so I'm not surprised, but when I said that he should color it in using either solid color or a texture (multicolor or color with a pattern) he just started drawing "patterns" all over his pictures. (The yellow string of shapes on the bottom of his Level 1 design and the blue triangular towers on the Level 2 design.) We'll see if their seeing how I interpreted the instructions will change how they approach it next time. It's interesting however you look at it to see their personality differences come out in their art. These were truly personal works (notice how mine is embarrassingly 80's looking?).

I tried to get some spelling or math or something in, but it just wasn't in the stars. They went from marker art to Play-Doh and have been doing that ever since... hours, literally. It was just an artistic sort of day, I suppose.


G said...

It *is* kind of 80's looking, but in a good way! Yes, I ordered that book finally, so maybe we will have some formal art lessons! My kids have been in major art mode too lately. I went to the teacher supply store and bought a bunch of clay blocks, which they actually ended up seeming to prefer over playdoh (doesn't dry out), about a million crayons (we go through these impossibly fast), more paper (another rapidly disappearing supply), some more math manipulatives, etc. It is so hard not to spend tons of money there, and unfortunately for me, it's a mile and a half down the street. Way too convenient.

Pixilated Mum said...

Man, them's are cool drawings .... And I can't believe you are making sense out of that book! Wow! You're so inspiring. Seriously.

It sounds like such a lovely artsy day, and I need to have some of that artsiness (how do you spell that????) rub off on us.

Keep posting about your life with that book!

Meesh said...

That's a great book- I have it somewhere. We did a trial class several months back at a Monart Studio- Owen made the most amazing picture of a panda. Unfortunately the instructor was not - um- very in tune with the kids. One boy was in tears, she ignored him, Emma couldn't see what she was doing (teacher was totally blocking her view) and she thought that Emma just wasn't interested- My art kid not interested- duh. Soon as I walked in I saw that she couldn't see and moved her- she drew the last part perfect- the bamboo-such a pity too- I love the philosophy of the book- maybe I should follow your lead and dig out my copy.....