An “adinkra” is a visual symbol. This traditional African textile dates back to the 1800’s. Adinkra symbols were once printed on fabric in a grid pattern using a carved gourd. This special fabric was reserved for royalty or spiritual leaders. Today adinkra cloth is widely available and commercially printed on fabric, t-shirts and jewelry for everyone to wear and enjoy.
This graphic style translates well to a successful printmaking lesson for any age. Follow along as we use this ancient art & modern materials to have some fun, adinkra style!
Growth mindset is kind of a buzz word lately. I’m all in when it comes to self help or anything that will inspire me to be a better version of myself. This growth mindset idea really struck a nerve in me because it’s something I struggle with and I see popping up in my own kids. These growth mindset quotes are just little snippets I like to remember to keep myself looking forward!
I’m not good at trying new things. Let me rephrase that; I’m not good at trying new things in front of other people. I love learning new things but I prefer time to process and practice them without an audience. I hate being the center of attention and being at the center of an audience because I’m failing at something is something I try to avoid at all costs.
Children’s literature is my classic, go-to move for introducing new ideas to my kids; be it an art movement or a science concept. Cuddling on the couch, reading out loud, soaking in the amazing illustrations that are available make it easy to enjoy! Books about art for children are easy to find and some of the most fun to read!
The elements of art have been a focus at our house and our homeschool co-op lately because they are such a good place to start. The elements are the building blocks to teaching your kids how to make art, look at art, and talk about art.
Here’s the thing about the element of shape… kids draw shapes all the time. Young children naturally draw in two dimensions. There are some elements like form and space that can be little more daunting for a student of any age to really understand and illustrate. But, shapes? The element of shape can be explored and enjoyed by even the youngest artist.
Kids can sink their teeth into this element and enjoy identifying shapes in art work and their environment as well as making their own shapes!
There is this beautiful brightly colored woven cloth known as kente cloth. It has bright colors, snappy geometric patterns, and is fun to touch were you to get your hands on a piece. All of these qualities make kente cloth a natural for inspiring art work in little people.
Kente cloth originated in the west African country of Ghana. It was originally worn by royalty, wealthy, or highly respected people. Today it is worn by all, expeically for special occasions. Men tended to wear it toga style; or tied over one shoulder. Women traditionally wear kente cloth as a wraparound dress or skirt.
Until I got to college I can honestly say my knowledge of the element of form consisted of making little cubes and those clever bubble letters that looked vaguely thee dimensional. I know for certain I could not have told what really qualified something to be a “form” as opposed to a shape.
Although the element of form may seem a little tricky it’s really simple. A shape is flat. A form takes up space in the room. Form is three dimensional and has volume.
The real fun begins when students are old enough to understand the bigger concept; that the “idea” of form can be drawn on a two dimensional paper.
Last year this time I was just beginning to think about wrapping up our first homeschool year. Here in the state of Ohio we must notify the state each year of our intent to homeschool. At the end of said year we can either choose a homeschool evaluation or have our student take a standardized test. I chose to have my four kid’s work evaluated by a local licensed teacher and here’s how that went down. (Hint, there’s a lot of hand wringing and pukey stomach stuff involved.)
Homeschool evaluations shouldn’t leave you feeling nauseous.
I’m not here to tell you how to organize for having your kiddos work looked at by someone else. (Although I DO love organizing & have some fun printables you might want to use if you’re the kinda’ person who calms themselves by organizing!!) I’m here to be your cheerleader! You can do this! Yay you!
For kids learning the elements of art is kind of like learning their ABC’s. The elements are simple little ideas, pieces that work together to make something bigger. Teaching the elements of art for kids doesn’t need to be intimidating.
Talk about art, look at art, make art, use art words. Doing these things when your kids are little will allow your kids to grow into adults than can express themselves creatively and appreciate the artwork of others. Teaching these basic building blocks of art is a great place to start!