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An Easy Way to Include Art in Your Homeschool

It can be hard to get the basic subjects done each day in our homeschools! I’ve been homeschooling for 19 years, and I think every single year I feel like I’ve left out something important. Art is one of those subjects. And I know I’m not the only one! I’ve heard from so many moms who would love to incorporate art into their homeschools but just don’t know how. Most of us need a curriculum that’s easy to use and that our children can use independently (or mostly independently). But of course we also want it to be a quality art program that our kids will learn from and enjoy. I’m happy to say that I’ve found a fun and easy art curriculum that makes it simple to work art into our homeschools!

Creating a Masterpiece is a great homeschool art curriculum!

Taryn and her children love art, but she needed help presenting lessons and getting organized.

Art is not my strength. Actually, let me rephrase that. I love art. I love creating art. It may not be masterpiece material, but I love painting, drawing, creating and coloring. So, while it may not be my strong suit, it’s definitely high up on my list of things I love to do. Where I really lack strength is in the organization department. Specifically, it’s the organizing and presenting of the lessons that I struggle with. Which is why I jumped at the chance to have a gifted art teacher move right into our dining room and teach my kids how to create masterpieces of their own. Make way for Creating a Masterpiece!

I watched a few of the video intros before I settled on a charcoal drawing as their first project. My four children range from 8 to 14 years of age and I wasn’t too sure how they would manage. I had nothing to worry about. Sharon gently guided them through the step-by-step process until they each had a beautiful end product that brought them the satisfaction that a well-completed project always brings. From my youngest to my oldest, beautiful creations began to emerge. They loved the process and the end results too.

Initially, my youngest child felt quite discouraged that his finished product didn’t look quite as impressive as his older siblings. It was a practical lesson in how time, maturity and hard work results in greater skill and results – something he could look forward to. His own results were great, and his siblings encouraged him with much, “that’s amazing, Mikey! When we were your age, we couldn’t do that at all!” By his second attempt, the lower lip threatened, but a gentle reminder of our discussions from the first time had him quite proud of his end result – not to mention the enjoyable process.

When I asked them what they liked about the program, Sam (10) said – I love that we can stay right here at home and if we feel like having an art lesson, we just need to click a link and an expert is teaching us in our own house! My eldest liked the variety and the step-by-step clear process and that she could just as easily work alongside her siblings as she could on her own.
Personally, I loved that I didn’t have to be there with them and could get on with other work that needed my attention. I am excited to sit down with them soon and try one a few lessons alongside them, too.
Pros
  • A lovely, warm and relational art teacher gently guides one through a step-by-step process of creating a masterpiece.
  • Media of all kinds are used and a variety of styles are taught, giving one exposure to art styles and techniques they may never have encountered before, all while teaching some tricks of the trade.
  • Encouragement is present throughout the lesson. It’s like having grandma lovingly guiding her grandies along – albeit a brilliantly talented grandma who is an artist in her own right!

 

Cons
  • To successfully complete every lesson, one needs to have access to some potentially pricey art materials. It can be costly.
  • Sharon has a strong American accent and presentation style which may be problematic for those not used to it. My South African kids took a little time to tune in.

 

 

Jill’s daughter loves painting, is creative, and enjoyed her painting lessons as well as branching out into new styles and methods of art.

My oldest daughter really enjoys the art of painting. Her papaw built her an easel when she was five, she’s received a lot of art supplies over the years for birthdays and Christmases, and I’ve made sure she’s had fun art curricula to add to her school day over the years. This girl of mine has a creative mind. I’m a huge believer in encouraging my children in any area that they show interest in and help them reach their full potential to the best of my ability. For my eldest child, those interests include art. That’s why I am so excited for this opportunity she has to try Creating A Masterpiece!

Creating A Masterpiece offers online fine art lessons for students of all ages. The teacher, Sharon Hofer, helps to build creativity and confidence in her students with step-by-step video instructions.

These art pieces were her first attempts at trying chalk and watercolors. While she is her worst critic (aren’t we all) and looks forward to improving even more in her future attempts, the fun she had making these art pieces and the ease of the instructional videos has been inspirational to her.

My daughter started at the beginner level, which consists of short, simple, and fun lessons. These lessons are designed so that anyone ages four and up can complete an art piece in forty-five minutes to an hour. The most foundational fine art techniques are taught at the beginner level. This curriculum goes up to level five with a category in art history as well, so there’s definitely a lot of opportunity to go far as an artist.

I was impressed with the tips Sharon offered while she was teaching. I have watched painters on the television in the past and the instructions were not all that great. These videos, however, are full of very helpful tips to aid anyone to make the best art piece possible. For instance, guess how she made the trees in the painting above? By blowing through a straw! To say I was impressed would be an understatement. She had a complete blast making the trees too! Having fun while making art helps kids to want to do more.

I am so glad we had the opportunity to use this art curriculum so that my daughter could reach a new level in her love of painting, and I look forward to using Creating A Masterpiece in the months ahead! I’ve enjoyed sharing this curriculum with others too. (I’ve already had a few homeschooling friends pledged to sign their child up!)

Jennifer has always wanted to include art in her homeschool, but she found it hard to work it in. Read about how Creating a Masterpiece has helped her solve that problem!

I begin every school year with great intentions to include art in our studies. I finish every school year wishing I had followed through with my intentions. Art always seems to slip by without getting done even though I have children who appreciate art and love doing it. Do you have children like mine? Creating a Masterpiece (CAM) may be what you need to try! With Creating a Masterpiece, you will never have to complete another year without art having a place in your homeschool.

Creating a Masterpiece

CAM not only makes including art in your school easy, but is taught by Sharon Hofer, a master artist and creator of the program. That is a plus for me – an art-challenged mom whose human portraits look like stick figures. Are you a mom like me? If so, CAM is not only an art program your children will enjoy, but one you will enjoy too. Students as young as four years old to adult will find something of interest in the five levels of instruction offered through CAM. The art program is one the family could easily do together. There are a variety of art projects to create with lessons that provide instruction for the beginning artist all the way to one who is more advanced.

Because of the wide age range of my children, there are not too many subjects they are able to do together. Using CAM was different. For the first few projects, they even agreed on the same lessons to complete. The step-by-step presentation of the lessons makes it easy for a beginner artist to follow. Once they work through lessons of a project, the result is something they will be proud to hang up on their wall. The higher level lessons continue to challenge the student’s creativity. Regardless of your skill level, there is much to learn from lessons that cover the use of mixed media, watercolor, pencil/charcoal, pastel, glass mosaic, and more. I have never seen an art program that offers video instruction on how to use so many different art mediums.

Creating a Masterpiece

I bought my children a basic art kit for each of them to use with CAM. It contained many of the art supplies they needed for the lessons. Although you could substitute an art supply (ex: pastels vs. crayons or charcoal vs. Conte crayons), you really should use the suggested tools to properly learn the techniques shown in the lessons. It was interesting to see the different appearance of a picture based on the tools we used.

Art is personal, and I found it interesting to see the different perspectives of each of my children even while working on the same lessons. They were drawing or painting the same picture, but the final picture from each one of them was so different. When they described their versions of a lesson, it made for great conversation!

My children enjoyed (and are still enjoying) working through the CAM lessons. Sharon Hofer has created an easy to use, fun to do, and educational way to include art in your homeschool. I hope you and your family enjoy it as much as my family and I do!

Wendy and her daughter both love art and want a curriculum they can do together that is simple to use and doesn’t require a lot of planning.

I’m Wendy, co-owner of Hip Homeschool Moms, and my daughter and I both love art! I’ve loved to draw, use colored pencils, and do charcoal drawings and pastel drawings for as long as I can remember. My younger daughter, now age 14, is the same way. I’ve been looking for an easy-to-use art curriculum that she and I can enjoy together, and Creating a Masterpiece has been great for us!

What I love about it is that it requires little to no planning ahead of time. I let my daughter choose the lesson she wants to work on next, and I make sure she has the materials she’ll need, and that’s all I have to do ahead of time. What she loves is that the lessons are fun, and she gets to do them with me!

Above you can see our projects from a lesson that taught us to draw sunflowers. We both think sunflowers are beautiful, and we grow them each summer, so we thought that lesson would be fun. Also, my daughter is friends with an older couple who live in another state, and she thought it would be a fun surprise to draw a picture and send it to them, so that’s what she did!

Another thing I enjoy about the curriculum is that it gives each student a chance to be creative and use his or her imagination even while receiving instruction on technique and processes. You can see from the pictures above that my daughter and I ended up with very different sunflowers even though we were watching the same lesson together. I want my daughter to learn to be herself and to allow her art to reflect who she is and what she loves, so I really love that this art program allows for that!

More About Creating a Masterpiece

If you’re interested in learning more about Creating a Masterpiece, you can take a look at their website, Creating a Masterpiece. But I’d love to share a few details with you first!

How the Projects Work

Each level (Beginners through Art in History) includes different projects that your student will complete. Each project is broken down into lessons. Sharon, the artist who presents the projects and lessons, recommends that students complete no more than one lesson each day. This allows the student to slow down and focus on quality rather than attempting to finish an entire project in one sitting.

Free Sample Project

Anyone who’s interested in trying out a free sample project can do that by clicking on this link. You can try the sample project for FREE, and they don’t ask for any credit card or other payment information, so you aren’t obligated in any way.

Available Projects

If you’d like to see the different levels that are available and get more information about each one, click here. You’ll see that there are levels from Beginners to Level 5, and there’s even an Art in History level for those who want to learn more about art in history or who want to incorporate art into your history curriculum.

And you won’t believe the huge variety of art mediums and techniques that are available! You and your students will have the chance to learn

  • pastels
  • watercolors
  • charcoal
  • ink
  • oil pastels
  • mixed media
  • alcohol ink
  • acrylics
  • silk dyeing
  • block printing
  • sculpture
  • and more!

More Information

  1. They offer large discounts to homeschoolers who contact them at (402) 882-0017. When you call, just ask for the conference discount!
  2. All memberships are family memberships! You only need one membership perhousehold, and all of your children can use the program.
  3. Both monthly and annual accounts give you access to every project in the program for the described period of time. They renew automatically, but you may cancel your renewal at any time. Many moms use the program one month at a time this way. They just stop and restart the account as needed.
    1. There are 3 subscription options available. 
      1. The monthly plan is $39.99 per month. It includes unlimited family access to all projects for one month.
      2. The yearly plan is $349.00 per year. It includes unlimited family access to all projects for one year. (This is a savings of over $130.00 for the year over the monthly plan!)
      3. Access to one level for one year range from $119 to $199. This includes access to one level for one year. Like other plans, this gives the entire family access to that level for the year.
  4. Sharon adds new projects regularly! This year’s new projects will include wood burning, batik, oil painting, glass etching, and many others!

Discount Code

When you call or go to the Creating a Masterpiece website, be sure to use the discount code Save$20! You will receive $20 off the regular price of any level that you choose (Beginners through Art in History).

 

About the author

Wendy

Wendy is one of the owners of Hip Homeschool Moms. She lives in the South with her husband, Scott, and 3 children. She is a Christian, homeschooling, work-from-home mom. She is involved in her local church and her work for Hip Homeschool Moms, and she teaches Training for Warriors classes at her local gym. She and Scott were high school sweethearts and have been married for 26 years. Her oldest child, Hannah, is now age 22. She has autism, and Wendy began homeschooling her at age 2. Her son, Noah, is now age 21 and is the second homeschool graduate in the family. Her youngest child, Mary Grace, age 15, is the remaining homeschool student. Wendy loves reading, eating gluten free, and working out.

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