I love, love the Impressionists. Looking at their paintings always makes me feel peaceful and happy; so I was delighted this week to continue our Impressionism study with Claude Monet. Last time we pulled a lot of resources from the computer but this week I was feeling more hands on so mostly we looked at books from the library.
(clicking the image will re-direct you to Amazon)
All of these were wonderful books but our favorite thing was watching an animated version of Linnea in Monet’s Garden on Netflix. It starts out a bit slow and I could tell the children were simply watching because I asked it, not because they wanted to. Brother sat on the floor flipping through the stack of other Monet books. Sister languished over the back of the couch. But somewhere around minute 5 they were hooked.
“Look, Mom!” Brother says, pointing to a picture in his book, “That’s the one they’re talking about.”
“Is that a real place?!” Sister asks when presented with a photograph of the actual garden.
“Yes. And you can actually visit it.”
“Wow! Really?!” Since so many of her own pictures come from books or her imagination I don’t think she had previously made the connection between Monet’s art and the real beauty that he copied.
As a side note I will mention that if you don’t subscribe to Netflix already you should consider it. They don’t always have the most popular new releases for instant viewing but there is a wealth of educational materials available.
For our art projects this year we are mainly working from the book Discovering Great Artists: Hands-On Art for Children in the Styles of the Great Masters by MaryAnn F. Kohl and Kim Solga but since the activity this week called for painting outdoors (which Monet would have loved).and since we are STILL in a heat advisory I found a replacement book with and INDOOR activity.
So many of Monet’s paintings incorporate the use of reflections on water so our project this week explored that concept. First, we covered the bottom half of a light blue sheet of construction paper with a darker color of blue construction paper, gluing the two together.
The little board book you see is one I picked up for Dora so she would have an art book too. She loves to be just like the big kids.
After gluing we used colored chalk to draw an outdoor scene on the light blue paper.
We lightly misted the drawing with water and folded it over onto the other half.
A coin rubbed across the back helped transfer the image.
After the paper had dried we had our own art and its reflection. Not how Monet did it, I’m sure but fun nonetheless.
You will note that there are no pictures of Sister’s finished artwork. She was very displeased with her attempt and so crumpled up the paper and threw it on the floor. There was no point arguing with her about the quality of the work. She truly is an artist at heart. My saying her picture was good wouldn’t change her thoughts on it in the least. Still, I couldn’t have her throwing trash about.
“Sister.” I said sternly, “Is that what Monet would have done with artwork he didn’t like?”
“No, he would have burned it.”
So that’s what she did.
Just because it’s not the lesson I planned doesn’t mean it wasn’t learning.