This live, online visual arts mini-course is suited for 1-5th grade students of all art backgrounds. As a 7-week mini-course, it is a non-graded art elective intended for developing student’s artistic drawing skills. In this course students will be taught to use “The Five Basic Elements of Shape” from the Monart Drawing Method developed by leading art educator Mona Brookes. Ms. Brookes is a highly acclaimed author of Drawing with Children and Drawing for Older Children and Teens which are both recommended in several homeschool curriculums. The instructor for these mini-courses, Kate Pepper, is a certified Monart instructor and loves sharing this wonderful method with other art enthusiasts (please read her bio for details). This guided, step-by-step drawing series is geared specifically for the elementary-aged learner. Each session has a unique theme and focus (listed below). Students may sign up for multiple sessions and start the course at any session during the year.
Drawing is a teachable skill that anyone can learn. Many older children, teens and adults don’t know how to draw simply because no one has ever shown them how. During class, students will draw along with the instructor to create their images with direct, step-by-step instruction. Students will learn to use the “Five Basic Elements of Shape,” which is the backbone of the Monart Drawing Method. Just as we put together letters to create words we will use “The Five Basic Elements of Shape” together to create realistic drawings piece by piece. While there is no outside homework for these classes, students are encouraged to keep a sketchbook to practice their weekly skills. They are welcome to submit their completed drawings each week after class to receive individualized feedback, or they may simply take this course for fun.
Themes and focus for this series of mini courses are as follows:
- Mini-course Winter
Theme: Jungle Animals of Asia
Focus: Draw realistic animals and their habitat
- Mini-course Spring
Theme: Under the Sea
Focus: Draw realistic water creatures and their habitat
Aside from simply learning foundational drawing skills, this course will also improve skills in the following areas:
- fine motor skills
- attention to detail
- boost self confidence
- creative problem-solving
My teaching style is loving but firm. A good example of this is that I have a no commenting policy on artwork created in class. This is because the students need to create for themselves, not for my approval or praise. By not giving my personal opinion on student’s artwork it creates a safe environment where students feel comfortable taking risks, drawing for themselves and this builds true self-confidence because of accomplishment as opposed to creating art a certain way for praise. Feedback to all students will be done in positivity, kindness, and encouragement with a focus on the art concepts being studied over talent or skill level. I like to get to know my students and I allow some chatter during our last 15 minutes of class time when we are coloring in as long as conversations remain appropriate. We do only have one hour once a week together so keeping us on track and avoiding too many distractions is paramount to me.
Art supplies must be purchased by the first class; all supplies can be found at Walmart, Target or Amazon. Your child must have:
- a piece of cardboard/poster board to protect their work surface
- 80lb. drawing paper (not printer/copy paper, must be sketch book quality)
- two black Sharpie markers
- non-washable crayons
- watercolor pencils
- Prang or Crayola pan watercolor paints
- pencil sharpener
- colored pencils and Crayola or Sharpie markers for students who wish to add color to their drawings.
Live meetings via Zoom will occur every week on Wednesdays at 2:00 pm EST.
All course meetings are optional, although because of the step-by-step nature of this course, attendance is highly encouraged for direct instruction, personal artistic guidance, class community, and to ensure understanding. Meetings will be recorded for scheduling convenience. Students who are unable to attend live lessons will still be able to follow along with the step-by-step instruction in a recorded version of this class, which will be posted on Canvas later in the day each Friday. This course emphasizes that art is for all and values the heart of homeschooling where flexibility is a top priority.
Weekly in-class assignments may include:
- A weekly 60-minute live meeting
- Interactive discussion of animals and their habitat
- In-class practice of skills being learned and mastered
- Student involvement in learning process
- Mastering of techniques of media and use of tools
Who should enroll?
Students in 1-5th grade who have an interest in art or students that may not have been successful in other art classes. No previous art requirements are necessary.
- High speed, broadband Internet
- Sound card and working microphone (for live sessions)
- Streaming video capabilities to watch recorded lectures
- Digital camera (can be phone with camera), or other means to photograph, scan, and upload student artwork
Evaluation and Feedback
In-class artwork has two options for students; they may submit through our website on Canvas to receive feedback, or they can simply do the artwork for fun, receiving no feedback. I will provide feedback/encouragement on all submitted artwork, focusing on understanding and demonstration of the concept versus artistic skill/natural talent, with the goal being to improve skills at the individual level. This is a non-graded course.
I will confirm registration with parents and provide a welcome email with clear details and video instructions on how to navigate this course. All parents are welcome to join us in Canvas as observers, and I will respond to all parents’ and student questions within 24 hours via email or Canvas message. For a quicker response please email my business: [email protected]