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The subject of art was one of the top reasons that I was afraid to homeschool. Math and science did not intimidate me. Reading and writing are areas that I find fun.
No, I was petrified to tackle the realm of art-especially drawing. Like knees-knocking, legs-shaking-in-my-boots kind of scared.
Don’t get me wrong-I love art! Art is beautiful to sit back and appreciate, to discuss and enjoy. I love learning about different artists and art movements.
I am, however, by no means an artist. A stick figure can present a challenge to me. (I always seems to make the head way too big!) Do you remember the comic strip that I created with my boys? Yeah, I worked really hard on that!
From the above picture, you can obviously see why I would be concerned about teaching drawing to my boys. At least I help build their confidence when they can teach me!
We have approached art in our homeschool in a variety of ways. In all of those ways, I try to find the most affordable. Our homeschool budget can only stretch so far, especial for “extra” subjects.
I created frugal art appreciation cards when we began our homeschool journey 4 years ago. These cards took a bit of work but were worth it. We continue to use these art appreciation cards as we study artists and art movements.
We also check out many books from our local library. The boys love hearing about the lives of artists and their time periods.
We currently use Usborne’s The Children’s Book of Art by Rose Dickins. The boys love this book-and it is internet-linked!
I felt like I had done all that I could with my limited drawing techniques for my boys. It was time to find an affordable and effective resource that I could use to teach the boys (and me!) how to draw.
During my search for how to draw books, I happened upon the gem Drawing Textbook by Bruce McIntyre. The subtitle “The teaching and utilization of drawing for educational purposes” intrigued me. I discovered that this drawing resource was designed to encourage all of its users to draw.
(I also found Drawing Textbook available for sale at Love To Learn.)
McIntyre was a Walt Disney artist turned art teacher. His approach to teaching drawing breaks down techniques and methods. Through a gradual process, McIntyre helps you build your drawing confidence and repertoire.
Drawing Textbook was written to be used from first grade and up. The only other materials required are paper and pencil. McIntyre states,
“This drawing program is not an art program, but is an audio-visual program designed to teach people how to communicate visually through drawing.”
Personally, I feel so much more confident after using this resource on how to draw. When one of my younger boys asks me to help them with a picture or I need to create a diagram to teach a concept, I do not experience that sense of dread like in times past. Through practicing my drawing skills with this book, I feel better tapping into my hidden drawing abilities.
One tip: Before you use Drawing Textbook on your own or with your family, browse through all of the lessons (37 total). Have your kids go through the book as well. Try not to feel overwhelmed or intimidated. Instead, tell yourselves that you will be able to draw like this soon.
Also, McIntyre stresses that it is important to take your time and repeat a lesson until you feel satisfied with your results. We are on Lesson 16-and we started four years ago! We have taken breaks from the book or repeated lessons several times. The important take-away is the sense of accomplishment and increase in drawing confidence.
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I am super excited to carry these new drawing skills over into our nature study journals! Stay tuned for more information about our nature study journals!
I pray that this how to draw book blesses your family and your homeschool! Do you have a favorite how to draw book?