Drawing Basics With Thomas Kinkade Dvd Set
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Review by Hearts at Home mom Bridgette Taylor
I am so happy to have found “Drawing Basics” for my 4th grader this year. I had merely put the DVD into the player to take a look at the material and my son was already drawing alongside Mr. Kinkade. He is excited about his weekly art classes and is gaining confidence in his abilities. This complete art curriculum is detailed and exciting while also being easy to follow and mostly student lead. The material states that it is for grades 3-5, but it could easily be adapted for students through grade 8 who need extra help with art. The material is also easily adjusted for more than one student within different grade levels. Everything you need, besides art supplies of course, is included in the LIFEPAC box set . The components include a Teacher’s Guide, 5 Unit workbooks, and a follow-a-long DVD that features Thomas Kinkade, The Painter of Light.
The Teacher’s Guide is extremely thorough. It features a copy of each page in the student workbooks with added lesson notes, instructions, and alternate activities. Another feature I found informative was the NAEA (National Art Education Association) guideline chart that goes along with each section. “Drawing Basics” is written to meet the standards of the NAEA for grades K-4 with some of the lessons and additional activities meeting standards for grades 5-8. The chart listed in each section lists the objectives and then directs you to another chart at the front of the book where you can look up the skills being learned and what NAEA standards they meet. Also included in the Teacher’s Guide is the answer key, alternate tests (in case the first test was not satisfactorily completed), and, my favorite part, the Bible Integration pages. Each unit has a Bible Integration lesson which you can use at the completion of the unit to help your child make connections between art and God’s Truth.
The 5 Unit course is designed around the traditional 18-week semester, but could be extended or shortened at your discretion. The student workbooks for each unit are broken up into 3 sections per book/unit. Each book builds upon the skills acquired in the previous book. The lessons start with Mr. Kinkade teaching us the importance of straight and curved lines by using them to teach us how to draw a sailboat and even a lighthouse. The lessons progress through patterns, contour and gesture drawing, space, proportion, measuring, underdrawing and overdrawing, drawing from imagination, tone, shading, texture, and landscapes. Unit 4 focuses on art history from the Egyptian, Greek, and Renaissance eras. The curriculum comes to an end in Unit 5 with the final project being a still life drawing that is planned, arranged, drawn (of course), and graded by the student. Each student workbook contains instructions, a list of materials, vocabulary, problems to solve, drawing activities, student workspaces, lesson reviews, and a student self-test for each section. Also included in each workbook is a pull-out test to be given upon the completion of each book/unit.
The DVD is an especially neat part of this curriculum. Students can watch and follow along as Mr. Kinkade instructs them. His demeanor is soft spoken but excited, and you can tell he has spent much time around children. I was impressed by the way Mr. Kinkade encourages the students while reminding them that all the beauty we see, and the artistic gifts we use to express that beauty are gifts from the Lord God. Kinkade’s love for the Lord and art is clearly seen by the way he encourages students to use their God-given gifts, such as imagination, eyes, and hands to bring to life artwork that glorifies Him. With such a well-rounded curriculum and such an easy-to-follow instructor, no homeschool should go without “Drawing Basics” with Thomas Kinkade.