Art is one of those subjects that really changes as your students get older. You start out with basic drawing and construction paper, and then you really start add in new mediums. This can present a challenge to those of us who are not comfortable at teaching these techniques. As the kids get older, that is what I am running into. I spend a lot of time researching new mediums that are still able to be done inexpensively and easily. We recently had the opportunity to review an art book from ARTistic Pursuits that really helped look into the art of sculpture..... Sculpture Technique - Model ($47.95) from ARTistic Pursuits.
Sculpture Technique - Model was written for kids age 11 - 18. This book continues on concepts that were introduced in Sculpture Technique, Construct, but you can use it easily alone.
We have not used the Sculpture Technique, Construct prior to starting Sculpture Technique - Model. The instructions provides are well written, along with material explaining why specific modeling methods are used. It allows students to have a guided creativity. There are projects working with putty, pottery and even fiber arts.
Students are encouraged to work with clay in a multiple formats. There are lessons building on mass and creating scale with clay. They are taught different methods of creating, including pinch, coil and slab. Fiber art is also included, wet felting, and needle felting.
Lesson materials are presented in an easy to use and read format. Older students could easily read through the lesson and work independently. As you can see above, even materials are highlighted and explained for the safety and proper use.
The one thing that Caty did not enjoy using during this review period, was the putty material. The suggested material is Durham's Rock Hard Water Putty, and she did not enjoy mixing it or modeling with it. In fact, we had to mix several batches because of it being too thick or too thin and then it dries very quickly. Which did not allow for her to fix creations on her time frame. I think the next time we work our way through this book in the fall, we will not be using this putty so as to avoid frustration. One of the nice abilities with ARTistic Pursuits is the ability to switch out certain materials, just in case you either do not have that type of paint or you have a child with sensory issues who cannot stand the clay type.
It also dried very brittle, so we had trouble with her projects turning out. She did spend hours working though on trying to figure out how to mix the clay and make her sculpture.
I have always enjoyed the art books from ARTistic Pursuits. We have used the entire elementary level series. I love the explanations given with projects. Being able to give your students examples and a reason why you want them to do their projects in a certain way is great for their learning. When I am trying to explain to Caty why she should be filling up the white space on her page, sometimes I even need a little help, and I have that to be able to read to her directly from the book. I can show her that it's not just mom who wants her to fill the entire page up.
Art classes are very expensive. So using ARTistic Pursuits is a very easy way to open your children's eyes up to the different mediums of art. Another benefit of using ARTistic Pursuits is the ability to use the lessons across a wide variety of ages. I have been able to use them with our youngest through oldest for the same project, making art lesson planning very easy.
If you are looking for an easy-to-use art curriculum, ARTistic Pursuits has a level for your family. They offer programs for preschool through high school.
Several members of the Schoolhouse Review Crew were given the opportunity to try out different levels of art programs from ARTistic Pursuits. Take some time to visit the blog and see how they enjoyed ARTistic Pursuits in their homes.