Best Ways to Teach Homeschool Art

What you need to know to teach homeschool art

How can we teach homeschool art to our children so they can express themselves creatively? Some children love to let the creative juices flow and parents just need to encourage and provide resources and ideas, but for others, parents need to be far more directive in order to help their children to experiment and enjoy this dimension of their being.

Home school art resources:

These home school ideas and resources will help you teach homeschool art and give you step by step help in order to design your own homeschool art curriculum.

Ways to teach Homeschool Art

What makes a homeschool art curriculum?

In order to present a more detailed perspective on how to teach homeschool art as a subject, the art overview page explains the  content and practice of a homeschool art curriculum.

The page defines the teaching of art into Artistic Elements, Principles of Design and Art Techniques and has ideas on how to 'practice' these techniques and integrate art across subjects and make it a part of your homeschool day. 

Create an art space in your home

Firstly, you need to have all sorts of materials around. If you are able to set up a small area in your house, where the materials are kept and can be readily available, that is ideal.

Depending on the age of your family, you could have coloured scraps of paper, scissors, glue, old magazines, coloured pages and cardboard for finished creations.

We have an stack of drawers called our "Making Boxes" and inside those boxes we have all sorts of things you may need to create a card, draw a picture, find the pens, glue, paper etc.

Make TIME for homeschool art projects

Homeschool Art Lesson Plan Ideas

The second most important ingredient to teach art is time. You cannot expect masterpieces in a quick, hurried 15 minute time-slot. My children often draw (with fine-tipped felt pens, pencils, textas, pastels, or crayon pastels) while I am reading aloud. They illustrate some of their notebooks or work in their Drawing books.

So, the really important part of teaching art is to give them time.  They will need time to experiment, to trial things and to test things out, especially if you want it to become something they practice and want to improve on.

Teach homeschool art across the curriculum with project ideas

To make a great use of time, it is wise to think how to teach art in an integrated way, including art project ideas using various art mediums across curriculum areas.  Some ideas include:

  • Paper mache for building castles, forts, horses and knight's helmets.  This tied in well when studying the middle ages in our homeschool history.
  • Plaster of paris when we made small frescoes (Renaissance time-period). We created costumes and armour as well as painted on windows.
  • Large models using paper mache and wire to create a town scene for cars and train tracks.  This was huge! 
  • Mosaics.  We also made a large mosaic from broken tiles to picture the plagues of Egypt.
  • Oil paints.  We used oil paints and copied some old masters during our Renaissance study. 
  • Pottery. We have used pottery at others times and used the pottery wheel to make cups and vases. 
  • Sculptures.  We have enjoyed creating sculptures out of limestone, chiseling away at large and small limestone rocks. 
  • Nature projects.  It is also great to create from nature:  pinecones, clay, gum-nuts etc

 Allow all of your experiences and learning become homeschool art projects!

Teach homeschool art history by entering the time period

Homeschool Art Living Books - Trade and Empire time period

In our homeschool Art studied in its historical setting, has enabled us to appreciate and interact with different types of art forms and see changes in cultures and style.

We noticed that in ancient Egypt, the paintings followed a rigid formula: broad shoulders, narrow hipped figure, wearing a headdress and a kilt, standing rigidly or in the guise of hunting, one arm on either side of his body and one leg advanced. In Greek, we saw a breakthrough in realistic work, in which some say the birds even came down to peck at the fruit in the murals. We have also been able to see how art is an expression of the culture and the philosophies of the time period.

If you would like to incorporate the study of art with history using living books and studying art within its time period, find out more:

Homeschool art curriculum and textbooks

Homeschool Art Resources - what to buy

As in all other subject areas, Art has its foundations, rules, techniques and styles which can be taught one principle at a time sequentially. This is not to say that in the midst of all the foundational teaching, there is no room for creativity. Rather, while we teach the foundations, we are giving children the tools to be creative.  You may find that a homeschool art curricula will help you provide groundwork for many art  techniques and specific art skills.  More art resources here.

Barry Stebbing's art curriculum

We have used some homeschool art curriculum and texts to teach drawing. I have used Barry Stebbing's Art Books.
These have been great to teach art - specifically, drawing with pencils and markers and painting step by step. With my young children, I introduce the concept and do a brief drawing myself and then they continue to work in their own art books on that particular lesson. They continue to draw and colour, while I read aloud. The older children, can pace themselves through the book and learn by themselves.

Artistic Pursuits art curriculum

This homeschool art curriculum is comprehensive, teaches the Elements of Art; observational skills; views the works of artists and looks at the Principles of Design; and encourages unique, original work which is a culmination of the unit. Included in each book is a set of fine art reproductions focusing on a particular time period. More information on Artistic Pursuits

Artistic Pursuits

Barry Stebbing Curriculum

Atelier  Art Curriculum

Teaching elements of art - one element at a time

Elements of Art

One way to teach homeschool art is by focusing on one element at a time, exploring it, observing it in nature ,viewing it in works of art and then using it in one's own original creation. Find out how to  teach elements of art.

Artistic Pursuits is a curriculum which teaches the Elements of Art in this way.

Teach the techniques of art

Exploring Art Techniques

By teaching art techniques you can work on homeschool art projects and explore painting, drawing, modeling and sculpture, print-making, pottery, handcrafts and so on. If you teach art using the techniques, it is good to spend some time with each technique and explore it in various ways.

Teach homeschool art in Nature Study

Teaching homeschool art through nature study has been a lovely way to enjoy art and the outdoors simultaneously. Once again, this is a part of our homeschooling I love, but it tends to be neglected. I wish this wasn't the case. I have the most beautiful resources for making a lovely nature journal. It is probably one of my most loved books on my shelf. I just melt when I look at this book for inspiration!

Keeping a Nature Journal

Homeschool art websites including online art lessons

One of the excellent things about online home education is that you can view art lessons either as video lessons as well as participate in virtual art classes. We have enjoyed a few of these. We have loved being a part of Mark Kistler's art classes and we have downloaded others from You Tube.

It is really worthwhile watching art lessons online as you can see the artist move step by step and you also have the opportunity to stop and replay any part of the video. A few websites you might like to check out are:

  • Meet the Masters. This program helps the student imitate the art work of 35 different artists. The lessons are geared to 3 different levels, so you can purchase them to suit the age of the children. 
  • - has a huge amount of homeschool online art classes for all different ages - online art lessons.

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