My goal was to expose A. to a form of art she hadn't seen before and inspire her with Cézanne's apples, Monet's lilies, and the dancers of Degas. What happened was so much more...
We typically make time for art a few days per week with special projects like watercolor painting or sculpting with homemade play dough. A. also enjoys drawing and coloring in her Main Lesson Books with beeswax crayons nearly every day to demonstrate her favorite part of a story, something we learned on a nature walk, or a new math concept (such as King Equal distributing jewels to the gnomes). Until now, however, we haven't formally studied art or given it a regular place in our schedule.
|A Sunday on La Grande Jatte, Georges Seurat, 1886|
|Amelie's first still life (inspired by Cézanne)|
Moving the arts to our morning session breathed new life into our routine and fired up my girl's mind and heart so that the afternoon subjects were a breeze. Studying the arts is not just about learning to paint or play, after all. The arts, both visual and performing, actually enhance brain development in young children (read about it here). It's such a shame that they're absent from so many schools today. I suppose there's no time or money for the arts when we spend it all on test-taking though.
|Bedroom at Arles, Vincent Van Gogh, 1888|
Cézanne is quoted as saying, “The day is coming when a single carrot, freshly observed, will set off a revolution.” With the arts no longer present in school, who will start the revolution? Will be become a world devoid of beauty and meaning? I refuse to imagine that world.... so we're keeping the arts right where they belong -- as the first subject of the day.