Every Day Art

Yesterday we spent the morning at the Frist Art Museum here in Nashville. I just love how they put kids at the center of it all. Under 18 is free of course. And, the hands-on activity center, Martin ArtQuest, on the second level is so much fun for kids of all ages. Mark and I had a blast coming up with our own creations while the boys worked on theirs.

Art, music, poetry, drama – in our little scuola these are all part of our “core curriculum.” We do something from the arts everyday, and most days several things. For example, after visiting the art museum, our Nature/science study for the day involved leaves and listening to Vivaldi’s “Autumn (more about loving Vivaldi coming up).

We did, eventually, get in some math, handwriting and reading, but we started and ended with art. Every day art!

Here’s our little space in the garage where the kids can get to their stuff whenever they want to (not that it doesn’t all spill out into the house as well, but we often start here).

Some days it looks more like this (or often worse):

It’s been well-used. I love it because the kids can help themselves to their own supplies and work on projects without needing much from us. But, we do have to re-organize and clean it out together every now and then to keep it usable.

Here are just a few of our favorite art books/resources we’ve loved over the past few years:

Vincent’s Starry Night and Other Stories: A Children’s History of Art, by Michael Bird
The Art Book for Children
Lift the Flap Art Book
Sister Wendy’s Story of Painting

…and LOVE these Mini Masters board books

Any art postcards we can get our hands on, like these gorgeous ones from The Met.
And these Picture Study Portfolios from Simply Charlotte Mason

The Iridescence of Birds, by Patricia Maclachlan
Matisse’s Garden, by Samantha Friedman

And plenty of FRIDA, of course.
Favorite Frida bio
One of my favorite Frida books
Frida postcards

(aargh, there are just TOO many great ones…will be following up in another post!)

Even though it’s always fun to have new supplies and books when we can, they definitely are not necessary. One of my kids’ favorite art projects from this year was mixing soot from the fireplace with water and drawing on the walls outside like cavemen.

Just a little room for imagination is all we need.

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