Monday, July 10, 2017

Home School in the Woods ~ A Review

Home School in the Woods offers a hands on approach to learning. Over the past weeks two of my children have been working through History Through the Ages Hands-On History Activity-Paks: Artists part of the Activity-Paks options. This Activity-Pak is for children in 3rd-6th grade.

The Scope and Sequence for the Artists Activity-Pak gives a brief summary of the curriculum. 

My 4th and 6th graders have really enjoyed working though this Activity-Pak. We have done quite a few Home School in the Woods hands-on pak's. We have always used the colored dividers, that the curriculum calls for, but this time I decided to go a bit outside of the box and use a project display board. With two kiddos working on the same Actiivy-Pak it was easier to create one HUGE lap book. I divided the activities up between my two kiddos and they went to work. This past school year my 17 year old took an amazing course in Music and Art Throughout the Centuries at co-op and from time to time she helped her sisters. 

In addition to the Artists-Pak there are also Pak's on ComposersMake-A-State, and both the Old and New Testament. 

Some of the artists that your child will study are:
  • Da Vinci
  • Van Gogh
  • Wood
  • Picasso 
  • Michelangelo
  • Rembrandt
  • Cassatt
  • Rubens
  • Matisse
  • Degas
  • Rockwell
My daughters really enjoyed learning about Mary Cassatt. From a young age, Mary knew that she wanted to be an artist. In the 1800's women artists were rare and for the most part could not even enroll in art schools. It was when Cassatt moved the the French countryside that she finally found her calling as an artist. She began painting villagers living their everyday lives. 

The activities in the Artists Lap Book include:
  • Art Media
  • Art Movement
  • Paint Box Vocabulary
  • Paint Like the Masters!
  • Artist Exhibition (33 Artists)

In the Artist Paintbox Vocabulary activity your student will learn words such as pigment, still life, medium, and opacity. They will match the correct definition to the word and create a fun paintbox. 

Each activity has detailed instructions on how to assemble the project. A list of supplies is also included. 


We utilized the internet, our home library as well as our local public library. There are so many amazing children's books on many of these artists. There are several great children's books series that cover artists, their artwork, and their lives. For the more not so well known artists the internet is a great way to learn about them. I would caution that parents should investigate websites before allowing their children to read and search through the sites. 

I sat for hours reading books about artists to my kiddos. After reading each book or chapter if it was a long book I decided to quiz my kids and they had the greatest time trying to out do each other on knowing the answers. I learned a lot too. 

My 17 year old daughter is helping her younger sister with the Art Media activity. In this activity there are lists of words such as wood etching, giclee, fresco, gouache, graphite, pastel, plaster, and terra-cotta and the student has to put the words in the proper art media categories which are:
  • Photography & Print Making
  • Painting
  • Drawing
  • Sculpture

Your student will become familiar with the time periods of Some of the Many Art Movements. Students will match the time period synopsis and the period's name. For example:

Pointillism 1880's
Pointillism was a form of Post-Impressionism using small dots of color, that when juxtaposed, optically blended to create new colors, tones, and hues.

Did you know that "the name Impressionism was invented as a term of abuse, an insult hurled by a critic after seeing the Monet painting IMPRESSION: SUNRISE at an exhibition of 1874." Critics as well as the public were not impression at all, rather many laughed. The period known as Impressionism is a perfect example of how artists are often misunderstood by the public. Today artists such as Monet, Renoir, Degas, and Cassatt as well as many others are known as great artists. Studying the artists of this age was fascinating. 

An example of Pointillism can be found in the works of Georges Seurat (1859-1891). His painting, A Sunday on the Grande Jatte, contain millions of color dots to fill this huge painting. Isn't it amazing how dots can create such a fantastic masterpiece? 

While studying all of the artists in this Activity Pak we happened to pick up a book about Edward Hopper. His paintings focused on Americana, mainly American life and landscapes as well as seascapes. My older daughter happened to have a magnet depicting some of Hopper's work. My older daughter helped her younger sister find the names for the works of art on the magnet. What I love about lap book type studies is that it truly gives the student the opportunity to go beyond the unit content to explore more on a particular subject. 

It was so much fun watching my kiddos truly appreciate great art. 

Studying these artists and the art movements throughout the centuries my children definitely have a new appreciation for art. Art has such a rich history and one can learn so much about a period of time in history by studying the art during that time. 

Home School in the Woods offers several hands-on learning options such as Timeline MaterialsMap SetsTime Travelers Activity-based U.S. History StudiesProject Passport Activity-based World History StudiesActivity-PaksLap-Paks, and Activity Studies

I have had the privilege of reviewing HISTORY Through the Ages Project Passport World History Study: Renaissance & ReformationHistory Through The Ages Hands-On History Lap-Pak: U.S. Elections in the past. 

Home School in the Woods has some new material that you might want to check out. Be sure to click on the link below to see reviews on these and more. 

I would highly recommend Home School in the Woods to others. I have enjoyed reviewing and working through the Activity-Pak Artists with my children. This curriculum definitely leaves room for exploring not only the material included but much more beyond too. 

Exciting News!!!
Home School in the Woods will soon be offering A-La-Carte projects! Have you ever just wanted a select few projects for topical studies, but not wanted to purchase an entire unit to get them? This is the answer! Coming this Summer!

To read more reviews click here.

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