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! Art books for kids are easy to find and some of the most fun to read!
What are the elements of art….
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.
In past posts I’ve shown you the free printables I use to teach the elements of art to older students and the free printable book I use to introduce my elementary age students to the elements of art. Here I am going to break down these awesome children’s books about art according to the specific element they focus on.
Art books for kids are SO easy to find~ the choices are endless!
I wish it was all as orderly as that. As with most creative endeavors there’s lots of overlapping and a few gaps. Most books on this list will actually cover more than one element of art and maybe even all of them! Check them out for yourself and use them any way you see fit! Even if you’re not doing a study of the elements of art in your classroom or home books about art like these are an easy way to give your child an art vocabulary and light that creative spark!
Books about the element of shape…
A shape is a closed line. Shapes are two dimensional. There are so many great books available that focus on the element of shape that it is hard to limit myself to a few! Lots of these books would also lend themselves to learning about math and geometry as well. Check out my complete introduction to the element of shape (plus printable) here!
Skippyjon Jones Shape Up by Judy Schachner
When a Line Bends…A Shape Begins by Rhonda Gowler Greene
The Greedy Triangle by Marilyn Burns
Shape Up! Fun with Triangles and other Polygons by David A. Adler
Mummy Math; An Adventure in Geometry by Cindy Neuschwander
Mouse Shapes by Ellen Stoll Walsh
If You Were a Polygon by Marice Aboff and Sarah Dillard
Seeing Symmetry by Loreen Leedy
Round is a Tortilla by Roseanne Thong
Shape by Shape by Suse MacDonald
Shape Shift by Joyce Hesselberth
Perfect Square by Micheal Hall
Books about the the element of line
A line is a moving dot. Lines can be wavy, straight, thick. or thin! There is lots of fun to be had with lines! For the whole story check out this post about the element of line and get a free printable for your student to practice!
Lines That Wiggle by Candace Whitman
Follow the Line by Laura Ljungkvist (This one is a series!)
Ish by Peter H. Reynolds (part of a trilogy)
Harold and the Purple Crayon by Crockett Johnson
Books about the element of texture….
Texture is the feel or consistency of a surface. In art the texture can be real or it can be implied. For more complete rundown on the element of texture plus a free printable check out this post!
Spiky, Slimy, Smooth; What is Texture by Jane Brocket
Soft and Smooth, Rough and Bumpy; A Book ABout Touch by Dana Meachen Rau
What is Texture? by Stephanie Fitzgerald
Books about the elements of color and value
Color is another name for hue and it’s all about refracted light. Value refers to the lightness or darkness of a color. I grouped these two together in this case because they work together! Click here to learn more about color and here for more info on value!
Mouse Paint by Ellen Stoll Walsh (This is part of a super cute series!)
Little Blue and Little Yellow by Leo Lionni
White Rabbit’s Color Book by Alan Baker (series)
The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywalt (series)
My Many Colored Days by Dr. Seuss
A Day with No Crayons by Elizabeth Ruch and Chad Cameron
A Color of His Own by Leo Lionni
Rainbow Stew by Cathryn Fallwell
Swatch: The Girl Who Loved Color by Julia Denos
Books about the elements of form and space…
Forms are three dimensional, they have volume and take up space. When you think about forms think of cubes, spheres, and cones. Space has to do with the illusion of creating depth within an artwork. For a more complete explanation of how to create space in an artwork click here. To get your printable and learn about form click here.
I especially love using art books for kids that focus on these elements because they are a little more abstract. Seeing sculptors and architects, and engineers build three dimensional forms in space gives some context to these ideas. I also love the idea that when studying these elements kids are likely to learn about careers that use art!
Look, Look, Look! at Sculpture by Nancy Elizabeth Wallace
13 Sculptures Kids Should Know by Angela Wenzel
Arches to Zig Zags; An Architecture ABC by Micheal Crosbie
Iggy Peck Architect by Andrea Beaty
Roberto the Insect Architect by Nina Laden
Look at That Building; A first Book of Structures by Scot Ritchie
When I Build with Blocks by Niki Alling
Dreaming Up; A Celebration of Building by Christy Hale
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