Friday, March 9, 2012

Artist of the Month

This year, we tried something new in order to introduce the children to famous artists.  We want the children to really KNOW these artists as people.  We want the children to understand why they drew or painted a certain way.  Lastly, we want the children to feel more comfortable expressing art in their own unique way.
Last summer, I stumbled across a Montessori blog (forgive me, I can't recall the source) describing "artist baskets".  I ordered the "Getting to Know the World's Greatest Artists" series by Mike Venezia.  I poured through them and found small objects relating to each artist's life.  Those objects, the "Getting to Know" book, a framed photograph of the artist, and a sample of the art, are placed in the basket for exploration and manipulation.  I'm thrilled when I overhear children's conversations near the basket, and it sounds like they're talking about a mutual friend!  Enjoy some of our experiences below:

van Gogh basket
Matisse art project

Discussion painting over snack table

Matisse basket

Picasso basket
A big thank you to my Assistant Teacher whose artistic view of the world helps to expose these young children to some of the most amazing and creative art experiences.