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Famous Artist Norman Rockwell

How would you like to visit with famous artist Norman Rockwell, known as “America’s Artist” while he paints one of his most iconic scenes from the “Four Freedoms” series: Freedom from Want! Yep, you will sit at a festive Thanksgiving table, set with the best china, the best dinner guests and have a happy time? Come on, that turkey leg looks like it is all yours! 

Famous Artist Norman Rockwell Show Notes

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Nana is passionate about helping you realize you ARE an artist! Not only an artist with chalk pastels but with homeschooling, creative spaces, favorite family recipes and more. Nana also enjoys chatting – especially about art. If you have followed along with any of her You ARE an Artist video art lessons, you know that. She also enjoys sharing photos and thoughts on topics while she is being creative in her studio space on her back porch. That is where she will be chatting with you – from her back porch. It’s Nana’s You ARE an Artist Podcast!

How would you like to visit with Famous Artist Norman Rockwell, known as “America’s Artist” while he paints one of his most iconic scenes from the “Four Freedoms” series: Freedom from Want! Yep, you will sit at a festive Thanksgiving table, set with the best china, the best dinner guests and have a happy time? Come on, that turkey leg looks like it is all yours! From Nana's Back Porch Podcast.

-Special thanks to Erin Vincent and her artists for the beautiful photos. Visit her at Nourishing My Scholar.

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Famous Artist Johannes Vermeer

I am inviting you to come with me on a trip back 400 years to a city named Delft and visit with famous artist Johannes Vermeer, who has been called the “Greatest Artist of the Dutch Golden Age”. You can sit with me as he paints his most famous painting, The Girl With the Pearl Earring! Not only this painting, but we will talk about his other paintings, like The Geographer plus Vermeer’s love of cartography! How did he have time to paint? This artist had 15 children! Come on, let’s go visit this Golden Era artist!

Famous Artist Johannes Vermeer Show Notes

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Nana is passionate about helping you realize you ARE an artist! Not only an artist with chalk pastels but with homeschooling, creative spaces, favorite family recipes and more. Nana also enjoys chatting – especially about art. If you have followed along with any of her You ARE an Artist video art lessons, you know that. She also enjoys sharing photos and thoughts on topics while she is being creative in her studio space on her back porch. That is where she will be chatting with you – from her back porch. It’s Nana’s You ARE an Artist Podcast!

-Special thanks to Erin Vincent and her artists for the beautiful photos. Visit her at Nourishing My Scholar.

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Famous Artist Claude Monet

Happy Birthday, Claude Monet! Before you go for ice cream and cake in honor of Monsieur Monet on November 14th, let’s delve deeper into his life and how his insistence of making art HIS way has influenced artists for almost a century! He has changed the art world, and almost like the Beatles changed music forever…Monet has graciously, softly, and beautifully colored our lives with his impression of what we couldn’t see before! Enjoy Famous Artist Claude Monet.

Happy Birthday, Claude Monet! Before you go for ice cream and cake in honor of Monsieur Monet on November 14th, let’s delve deeper into his life and how his insistence of making art HIS way has influenced artists for almost a century! He has changed the art world, and almost like the Beatles changed music forever...Monet has graciously, softly, and beautifully colored our lives with his impression of what we couldn’t see before! Enjoy Famous Artist Claude Monet.

Famous Artist Claude Monet Show Notes

Happy Birthday, Claude Monet! Before you go for ice cream and cake in honor of Monsieur Monet on November 14th, let’s delve deeper into his life and how his insistence of making art HIS way has influenced artists for almost a century! He has changed the art world, and almost like the Beatles changed music forever...Monet has graciously, softly, and beautifully colored our lives with his impression of what we couldn’t see before! Enjoy Famous Artist Claude Monet.

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And be sure to join Nana in our FREE You ARE an Artist Facebook group and our community on Instagram and all the social media as well.

Nana is passionate about helping you realize you ARE an artist! Not only an artist with chalk pastels but with homeschooling, creative spaces, favorite family recipes and more. Nana also enjoys chatting – especially about art. If you have followed along with any of her You ARE an Artist video art lessons, you know that. She also enjoys sharing photos and thoughts on topics while she is being creative in her studio space on her back porch. That is where she will be chatting with you – from her back porch. It’s Nana’s You ARE an Artist Podcast!

-Special thanks to Erin Vincent and her artists for the beautiful photos. Visit her at Nourishing My Scholar.

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The Big Kid Art Table

Do you have some “littles” lurking around your table while you are setting up an art lesson? You know, the eager two or three-year-old want-to-be artist? Pull them up a chair, even put a couple of books in the seat to raise them up to table level! Yep, invite them to sit at the Big Kid Art Table! I can tell you how and when this can happen at your house. Change his life with this invitation. Little person will be forever thankful! Do it today! Look, EVERYONE can be an artist! ❤️Nana

Invite your eager two or three-year-old to sit at the Big Kid Art Table! Little person will be forever thankful! A podcast with Nana of You ARE an ARTiST #podcast #youareanartist #preschoolart

Listen to Nana’s Podcast The Big Kid Art Table

Big Kid Art Table Show Notes

P.S. If you enjoy this episode, would you please share it with a friend (there’s a handy little share button, above) and/or leave a review on your favorite podcast app? Thanks!

Try a Big Kid Art Lesson – Preschool Apple

And be sure to join Nana in our FREE You ARE an Artist Facebook group and our community on Instagram and all the social media as well.

Nana is passionate about helping you realize you ARE an artist! Not only an artist with chalk pastels but with homeschooling, creative spaces, favorite family recipes and more. Nana also enjoys chatting – especially about art. If you have followed along with any of her You ARE an Artist video art lessons, you know that. She also enjoys sharing photos and thoughts on topics while she is being creative in her studio space on her back porch. That is where she will be chatting with you – from her back porch. It’s Nana’s You ARE an Artist Podcast!

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Christopher Columbus Art Lesson

Enjoy an I Drew It Then I Knew It Christopher Columbus art lesson to complement your history studies! This art lesson is the sample from Nana’s Classical Collection of American history video art lessons you can find here. All of Nana’s I Drew It Then I Knew It lessons are included at the Complete level of the You ARE an ARTiST Clubhouse!

  • A note on chalk pastels: Pastels are an easy, forgiving medium. Fun for children and adults alike! Details on the pastels and paper we use, how and where to purchase, and links to all of Nana’s other pastel lessons are here: Our Favorite Chalk Pastels
  • The practical aspects of a mess: Pastels are blessedly messy. We always have baby wipes close by to wipe hands. We wear something we don’t mind getting stained or don a smock.

FEATURING YOU! YOU ARE AN ARTIST!

Paint your fall art and be sure to share with us! Simply tag @chalkpastelart on Instagram, use the #YouAREanArtist hashtag, or upload a photo to the ChalkPastel.com

Enjoy an I Drew It Then I Knew It Christopher Columbus art lesson to complement your history studies! This art lesson is the sample from Nana's Classical Collection of American history video art lessons you can find here. All of Nana's I Drew It Then I Knew It lessons are included at the Complete level of the You ARE an ARTiST Clubhouse!
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Football Video Art Lesson

In celebration of your favorite team, enjoy this football video art lesson with Nana! YOU are the artist, so feel free to add the field, the fans, and your favorite team colors. All things fun for football season. And be sure to join Nana in the You ARE an ARTiST Clubhouse for 700+ video art lessons for all ages!

Suggested supplies: white or light colored construction paper. Brown, black, green and blue chalk pastel colors.

  • A note on chalk pastels: Pastels are an easy, forgiving medium. Fun for children and adults alike! Details on the pastels and paper we use, how and where to purchase, and links to all of Nana’s other pastel lessons are here: Our Favorite Chalk Pastels
  • The practical aspects of a mess: Pastels are blessedly messy. We always have baby wipes close by to wipe hands. We wear something we don’t mind getting stained or don a smock.

Do you and your artists learn best with a video art tutorial? Join the You ARE an Artist Clubhouse for even more Video Art Lessons at ChalkPastel.com!

More Football Fun For You

In celebration of your favorite team, enjoy this football video art lesson with Nana! You ARE an ARTiST!
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How Nana Started Chalk Pastels

Some of you have asked how Nana started chalk pastels. I have spent several days trying to compose an essay as to why I finally chose to follow pastel painting as MY art. I have a very long history with paintbrushes and canvas, but I have been literally enthralled with pastel chalks for about 25+ years. Why? Ok, it is the “messiness” that drew me in. What in the world do I mean? Chalks that stain my fingers? Dust that collects on the table or easel?

Noooo! It is the discovery of the kinship that I share with those Impressionist painters from long ago. Those painters that found that chalks only require a few strokes on a paper to see a painting come to life before your eyes! Smudges can be canopied trees in a forest. Darkest purple colors can hint of a secret area under a lily pad. The glory of clouds, stacked up and ready to blow up into a tornado on a spring day! And, best of all…NO mistakes! The artist can brush away a mistake or color right over a stroke. After all, the secret is the IMPRESSION of what you want to paint! Quick, easy and you are done! From your head to your hand, you imagine, paint and remember it!

Now, my beloved artist friends, that’s why I am following what the Master Artist has chosen for me to teach to you: Freedom! And a tiny lift to the corner of your mouth as you smile at your completed pastel masterpiece!

How Nana Started Chalk Pastels

Some of you have asked how Nana started chalk pastels. Nana answers and shares a photo of her very first chalk pastel painting!

Look at what I found under my bed! I admit that I have lots of my paintings in my tiny house and sometimes I just shove a stack out of the way, under the bed or sofa! But this one is very special, and I really haven’t seen it in a while. It is the FIRST pastel painting that I ever painted! Many years ago I painted this from a photo provided in an art class that I signed up for. I thought that it was pretty good until the teacher laughingly said that my clouds lined up and looked like Papa Bear, Mama Bear and Baby Bear! I grin about my “cloud bears”, but I think sometimes I see them in the sky, peeking down at me! Do you love painting clouds with your pastels?

And speaking of bears, you will LOVE Nana’s bear art lesson. A You ARE an ARTiST Clubhouse exclusive lesson that includes the story of the bear that came to visit Nana’s backyard!

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Celebrating a Decade of Art Lessons

Friends, we recently realized that we have over 600 video art lessons in the You ARE an Artist Clubhouse and growing! With Nana’s video lessons and my written, step-by-step art lessons, there are upwards of 800 art lessons total! Wow! That is worth celebrating! We also talked about how Nana shared her first lesson with her grandchildren back in 2009. So we are also celebrating more than a decade of art lessons.

Here’s a quick run down:

All this plus a wonderful community and bonus material. We even have an online calendar for members with daily art prompts and links to archived lessons.

Roughly 800 lessons — worth $4,000! You can have ALL ACCESS with a monthly Complete Clubhouse membership for only $30!

What have you been waiting for? Join Nana in the You ARE an Artist Clubhouse!

With over 600 video art lessons in the You ARE an Artist Clubhouse and growing, we are celebrating more than a decade of art lessons.

To celebrate a decade of art lessons – and to make your membership extra wonderful – we are giving away a set of chalk pastel drawers to organize your chalk pastels. Plus a set of chalk pastels to help fill those drawers! The giveaway is happening over on our Instagram from the evening of 6/16 – 6/21 with winners chosen on 6/22.

Read all about our favorite chalk pastels storage and favorite sets of chalk pastels in our Frequently Asked Questions section.

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How We Use Art as an Alternative To Testing

Before we began homeschooling, my youngest son was in a preschool program near our home. He loved his friends. He loved to play on the monkey bars. What he didn’t like was the frequent testing. In our state, preschoolers are tested in their pre-K year for Kindergarten readiness. 

Every month, his teacher would send home a summary of the test.  Every month, his scores actually declined. Although my son does have some learning differences that made things like learning phonics and basic reading a challenge, I could see that even the things I knew he knew were not coming across in the test. For example, he knew all his colors. Why was he consistently not able to show this skill as part of the testing?

At the time, it baffled both me and his teacher. Years later, I now know exactly why.

Sometimes Nontraditional Learners Need A Nontraditional Approach

My son has always been a nontraditional learner. He thrives with hands-on, experiential learning. He needs music or a story to remember anything detailed, and art has consistently been an invaluable way for him to comprehend and retain learning, especially in science and math. 

My child needs a different approach to his education in general. I realize now, he also needs a different approach to testing and being able to show what he’s learned.

It has taken a while for me to feel comfortable with this approach, which is exactly why I want to share it with you today. Rather than a standard multiple choice, true or false and short answer essay type of test, I have learned that the very best way to really test my son’s knowledge, is to incorporate some element of hands-on learning, especially art.

How We Use Art As An Alternative To Testing

After finishing up a unit study, my son and I sit down and complete a related art project together. When he was younger, it looked a lot like crafts. Now that he is older, it typically involves map work or some other art project displaying an element of what he’s learned.

Throughout our work together on the art project, he and I discuss what he’s learned. Sometimes, I ask him the related questions from the quiz at the end of the curriculum. Sometimes I make up my own.

No matter what the question, I ask in a very conversational manner as we work.

“Why was Thomas Edison’s light bulb the one that succeeded?”

“What is the difference between a nova and a supernova?”

“Why were castles so instrumental in Medieval culture?”

Through this casual questioning, all while my son is actively creating, I am able to get a much more thorough understanding of what he’s learned than any test could possibly provide.

What Art As An Alternative To Testing Looks Like

Recently, as we wrapped up a month long study of  the Louisiana Purchase and the exploration of Lewis and Clark, we sat down to complete the Mapping Lewis And Clark Lesson. As we listened and followed along, he and I discussed what we had already studied.

After completing the map, we used it as a final “exam” as he expertly showed the boundaries of the Louisiana Purchase as well as the path of Lewis and Clark. It was not only an incredibly effective way to gauge his learning, it was a lot more fun for both of us!

Why It Works 

As I consider this approach and the success that we’ve seen with it, I think there are two main reasons why this works.

1. Movement and Activity

For my child, and I know for many others, focus can be a challenge. This is especially true when trying to recall information and communicating what he’s learned.

The movement and hands-on activity associated with art better allows my son to focus. This is true for him in all learning, so it makes sense that this would also be an important component in how we test.

2. Decreased Test Anxiety

My son is a perfectionist by nature. When I think back to his preschool testing and how every month, he actually performed worse than the month prior, I can see now that his own worry and stress associated with the testing itself, got in the way of us really being able to see what he’d learned.

Taking an artistic approach to testing eliminates his test anxiety completely. He is more effectively able to show what he’s learned, because the testing environment is one that is conducive to his strengths and learning needs.

Overall, this has been so successful for us. Using art as an alternative to traditional tests is exactly what we needed to accurately gauge his learning. If you have a child who is a struggling learner or who experiences test anxiety, I highly encourage you to consider this approach. 

After all, how we test is not nearly as important as seeing that our children are learning and making progress.

Shawna Wingert is a special education teacher turned writer, speaker and consultant. She is also a homeschooling mom of two brilliant boys with differences and special needs.  Shawna has written four books for parents – Everyday Autism, Special Education at Home, Parenting Chaos and her latest, Homeschooling Your Child With Special Needs. She helps parents of children with learning differences, behavioral challenges and special needs every day at DifferentByDesignLearning.com.

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An American Art Celebration

Who is ready for an American Art Celebration? History, art, holidays, maps and more! There is simply so much to celebrate. Take a look at the NEW lessons our You ARE an Artist Clubhouse members will enjoy with Nana.

Who is ready for an American Art Celebration? History, art, holidays, maps and more! There is simply so much to celebrate. Take a look at the NEW lessons our You ARE an Artist Clubhouse members will enjoy with Nana.
  • Hymn – America the Beautiful written by Katharine Lee Bates. A teacher, she wrote this hymn while on Pike’s Peak with friends. They had been to the World’s Fair and were discussing man-made wonders and God’s glorious handiwork.

Complete Clubhouse members will also enjoy more American Art Celebration lessons:

  • Composer Francis Scott Key – Star Spangled Banner
  • President James Madison
  • Famous Artist Betsy Ross and the American Flag (LIVE premiere!)
  • Map of France – some founding fathers traveled there, along with Benjamin Franklin
  • Summer Acrylic Master Artist Class (LIVE premiere!)

Online, clickable, daily member calendar for the whole month – right in your member dashboard. (Not to mention a brand new, downloadable and printable Art Planner for 2020-21 for You ARE an Artist Clubhouse members).

More American Art Celebration ideas with lessons for:

  • Independence Day (fireworks with chalk pastels? YES!)
  • National Peach Month
  • National Picnic Month
  • Birthday celebration lessons for E.B. White, Henry David Thoreau, Julius Caesar, Beatrix Potter and J.K. Rowling

Did you know that there is so much to celebrate in July? Art lessons to go with books, nature and all things outdoors!

Free American Art Celebration Video Lesson with Nana

One of our very favorite things is those brilliant chalk pastel colors on dark construction paper. What a fireworks show you can create! To give you a taste of the American art celebration that member artists will enjoy, here is How to Draw Independence Day Fireworks with Chalk Pastels.

Independence Day Fireworks with Chalk Pastels

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You might also like the step-by-step American Flag Art Lesson led by Tricia’s daughter.