So you have one hour, or less, to teach a child about a master artist and have them complete a small masterpiece of their own.  It’s a heavy undertaking.  Though, with a lot of planning on the front end it should go pretty smoothly.   You may even walk away from the hour a little tired, but content in knowing that a child gained something invaluable that they will carry with them for the rest of their lives.  They might not go home and tell thier family exactly what they learned that day.  It may be down the road that a child looks at the world around them just a little differently because of something they learned during an art appreciation class.   

If you think this sounds a little exagerated I’d like to point out one thing to you.  I was a child that sat in art appreciation years ago (now exact numbers of how long ago aren’t relevant here) and soaked up every word that was spoken about a different master artist each month.  I thought the art appreciation lecturers were masters of the information.  They must be swimming in art information all day.  The artist’s lives, no matter how tragic, sounded so interesting.

We all know that not every child is sitting there feeling such interest in art appreciation.  Although, now that I think about it, I have never walked into a classroom and had a child look dissappointed because art appreciation was about to begin.  

Art Appreciation is a wonderful opportunity for a child to learn a little bit about an artist and why they are considered a master as well as experiment with different materials and work with their hands to create thier own piece of art.  A child works on something guided yet filled with their own personality.  It can be so difficult for children to think outside the box and push themselves away from thier comfort zone.  Some children struggle with the idea of creating thier own artwork.  It’s aginizing for some children to feel free to be creative.  They want to look at their neighbors work and do it just like their neighbor is doing because that must be the right way.  If a child learns nothing else in art appreciation other then their work doesn’t have to look like their neighbors then they will have accomplished much.  It is thier art and should only be what they want it to be because everyone’s art is different.  They may like thier neighbors art but they certainly don’t have to do it like thier neighbor.  I must say this during every art appreciation class because I have heard my own children repeat to thier siblings, “It’s my art.  It’s how I want it to look.  There is no right or wrong way to do it.  Just the way I want to do it.”  Music to my ears.  Hopefully  carrying that confidence into other aspects of thier lives.   

Among the many things that art will give any person are:  creativity, culture, knowledge, individuality, expression, the ability to think outside the box, the knowledge that there is more then one solution to a problem, confidence, an outlet that might be needed and not being fulfilled in other areas of learning,  that it is possible to create something from nothing, what their own likes and dislikes are, self-esteem, motor skills… . The list goes on and on.  There are just so many benefits to having an artfilled life.  Art surrounds you wherever you are.  Art doesn’t have to be a picture on the wall.  Look around you at any moment and you will see world full of art.  Everything around us was designed by an artist.     

So why this website?  Well I know that planning for a project based around a particular artist is not always easy.  Especially when you only have one hour or less to complete it.  I happen to love putting these types of projects together.  I could spend hours planning on just one.  It’s a process though.  Some people are just like me in this respect, but understandabley some are not.  That is not to say they don’t want a successful and fabulous project.  So my hopes are that many project ideas can be offered here.  A go to location to get ideas and use them or use them as a starting point for something else.  But, I hope  you find it helpful and I hope it sparks your belly with lots of excitement and confidence to face that one magical hour!

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