The following is a list of resources that I use to piece together an art program for each of my children. I like to look for things that appeal to their interests, and each of their programs is different. There are so many resources online now, I feel like you can really have a great art program at home even if you are not artsy yourself. I don’t use anything exhaustively. I pick and choose and make an art program that we love.
Harmony Fine Arts: This program is a great pick up and go curriculum that teaches music and art appreciation, history, and includes art projects. It goes along with the history timeline that is recommended to classical homeschoolers in books like, “The Well-Trained Mind.” There is a grammar, logic, and rhetoric stage, and each stage learns art and music in periods of time cycling through ancients, middle ages, early moderns and moderns. There are three different options for following the program in the grades that I have used. There is weekly picture study that is very easy and is a minimal time commitment, then option 2 is more involved and the student incorporates more projects. Option 3 seems to be the most involved with several art opportunities each week so you can customize it for your family. I just recently decided to incorporate this into our art studies, and so I am working on the best option for us.
Youtube Art Tutorials: This is one of the best ways to get free art lessons that I have found. We have just started acrylic painting in the last year, but I am sure there are resources for any style of painting and other art medium. I am including the channels that we have used. I will be adding to this list as we continue schooling.
Art Through the Year with Sharon Jeffus This is a great site that is featured on the Rainbow Resource homepage. The lessons are fun and informative. You study different artists and techniques and learn about different elements of art. The projects have been wonderful, and my kids really enjoy this series of lessons. Best of all they are free!
Creative Bug: This is a great site with lots of different crafting lessons. We have learned to crochet fruits and vegetables, art journal, make paper flowers, frost cakes, and we have so many more courses that we want to take and try. We want to learn calligraphy and watercolor painting next. This is a monthly subscription based site for $5/month. We really enjoy it, and they have a free trial so you can check and see if there is any courses you would like to take.
Draw Write Now My kids really enjoy these books, and I like them because they help my younger children learn to draw in a way that gives them good success. They learn to follow directions and to see complex pictures in simpler shapes. I feel like it is good practice for more advanced drawing classes later.
Home Art Studio (HAS) This is a DVD art lesson series for grades K-5. I really like these lessons because at the time that I bought them there weren’t a lot of youtube lessons for younger students who aren’t ready to tackle the more advanced tutorials that are aimed at adults. There are several youtube kids art channels, but I have found that I still enjoy these lessons because the teacher has a degree in art education and knows what children at each level can do. It is really like having private art lessons right in your home, and since local art teachers charge $15 a lesson, I feel like the money spent is an awesome investment.
Atelier Art This is another DVD art lesson curriculum that also comes with art prints and lesson plans for more art study above the DVDs. I found that I let my kids look at the prints, and then do the DVD lessons. These are so much more expensive than Home Art Studio that I didn’t buy anymore after I found that program.
Virtual Art Instructor (VAT) This is another source I found through Youtube. It is subscription based, but I splurged and got it for my artsy daughter, and we have really enjoyed the lessons in the series. It is definitely worth looking into if you want more structured lessons that build on each other.
You Can Draw in 30 Days I got this book from Mark Kistler after trying his 3D art. Some of his online lessons seemed to be building on previous knowledge that we didn’t have, so I got his book to fill in the gaps.
Mark Kistler 3D Art These are fun online video lessons that we got through the Homeschool buyers co-op. I feel like it is the next step in drawing after something like “Draw Write Now.” It is another step by step tutorial that adds 3D elements. My kids really enjoy this program. You can get them
Nature Journaling This is something I have really come to believe in. It is good practice for students to draw and paint from observation, and we have really seen a lot of benefits from adding this into our lives. We have started using The Laws Guide to Nature Journaling as well as the website from the same author, John Muir Laws. There are several other books that he has made, and I have come to see him as the living expert on nature journaling. My kids really enjoy his online tutorials as well, and they have watched several from his drawing bird tutorials to Sketchnote taking.
Come Look With Me books These books are great. There is an art print on one page and then questions to ask and information to read on the next page. I like to sit and read these with my kids. It isn’t super formal and structured, but I think it is a great resource for families.