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Art Lessons For Homeschooling A Child With Special Needs

It can be a challenge to find resources when you are homeschooling a child a with special needs. These online art lessons have been a great way to integrate art as we homeschool my child who is a unique learner with different special needs diagnoses.

My son has always been fascinated by art.

He is naturally a creative child. When we visited an art museum with a group of homeschool friends a few years ago, I understood a bit better why art is so meaningful to him.

After spending the day running all over the museum with other ten year olds, we got back into the car to begin our drive home. My son gazed out the window, tired but satisfied, and said, “That was the best field trip we’ve done in a long time.”

Thrilled at this homeschool mom win, I asked him why he loved it so much.

He replied something to the effect of, “I was just like all the other kids today. I didn’t have to read anything. I could just look at all the art and talk about why it was beautiful or cool. I like pictures so much more than writing.

At the time, I didn’t realize how profound his statement really was. Now, four years later, I see how powerful art has been for him, both as a learner and as a human being.

art and special needs homeschooling

The Challenge In Homeschooling A Child With Special Needs

When your child struggles academically and has special needs that affect learning, homeschooling has its own unique set of challenges.

For example, I have never once been able to purchase curriculum in the same way many families do. I have to consider the amount of reading required, if it is age appropriate for my now teenage son who reads at a level much lower than high school.

Add in the anxiety and pressure my son often feels related to learning, and our homeschool has become a beautiful mix (mess?) of anything and everything that works for his individual learning needs.

Art, in general, and online art lessons with You ARE An Artist, are an integral part of our homeschooling.

art and special needs homeschooling

How Art Can Help Struggling Learners

My son is not alone in his affinity for art. Here are four benefits of art for children with special needs.

1. Art Is More Accessible

Many children with learning differences find comfort in art, knowing that the academic requirements are less traditional and more fluid.

2. Art Has Therapeutic Value

In addition to the academic difference, art can be therapeutic for our kids. My son was enrolled in art therapy for a year, to help him learn coping skills and manage his own anxiety.

It was effective and it was also quite fun for him!

Knowing the impact that art has on children, and on my child in particular, makes it an obvious choice for our homeschool.

art and special needs homeschooling

3. Art Helps Decrease Resistance

Given the choice between art and another worksheet, my son will choose art every single time. When I am able to integrate art into our learning, I find my son more willing to engage and much less likely to resist.

4. Art Often Highlights Other Historic Figures With Differences

Leonardo da Vinci is presumed to have been dyslexic. Vincent Van Gogh likely struggled with a mood disorder throughout his life.

It is no surprise that these two artists are two of my son’s absolute favorites. Not only does he enjoy their work, he feels a connection to the struggle they endured and the way they used art to express themselves. It has been a wonderful way to help normalize and encourage neurodiversity in his own learning, as well as in the world around him.

art and special needs homeschooling

Art Lessons For Homeschooling A Child With Special Needs

Because You ARE An Artist lessons often include the use of chalk pastels, I find them to be a really good fit for a child who struggles with perfectionism and anxiety.  This medium is much more forgiving and allows for a little bit of fine motor weakness, while still ending up with a beautiful creation.

You ARE An Artist also makes art and academics seamless, as many of the lessons are specifically for science, history and literature.

Take a look at the various options available:

You ARE An Artist also offers 47 famous artists video lessons for your homeschool including:

  • Vermeer
  • Michelangelo
  • da Vinci
  • Warhol
  • Monet
  • Rockwell
  • Rembrandt
  • Lichtenstein
  • Audubon
  • Beatrix Potter

These are perfect for the child (like mine) who loves to learn about and feels a kinship with artists.

art and special needs homeschooling
Learn more about Homeschool Art for a Child Who Hates the Mess and the simple suggestions – pictured in these photos.

You ARE An Artist Homeschooling A Child With Special Needs Resource Bundle

I am so excited to share that You ARE An Artist is giving away some of my absolute favorite resources for homeschool art (plus a signed copy of my book – Homeschooling Your Child With Special Needs).

Take a look at this amazing Giveaway Prize Bundle:

  • A set Chalk Pastels for your kids to enjoy!
  • Artists: Their Lives and Works
  • Van Gogh. The Complete Paintings
  • Monet. The Triumph Of Impressionism
  • Vermeer (Basic Art Series)
  • Homeschooling Your Child With Special Needs (signed copy)

art and special needs homeschooling

To enter this fantastic giveaway, simply fill out the form below!

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Shawna Wingert

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

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Art Lessons For The Charlotte Mason Homeschool Family

There are books and entire series of books written on the Charlotte Mason homeschool and Charlotte Mason’s educational philosophy. In this overview, I will help you learn about the lovely components that make up a Charlotte Mason education – with a special focus on the beauty of art.

We love using the You ARE an ARTiST Lessons because they tie in so well with the Charlotte Mason phliosophy. With so many options, we could do art every day! Art Lessons for the Charlotte Mason Homeschool Family.
Photo by Amy Law

If you are not sure who or what Charlotte Mason is, you are in good company. Although I have a master’s degree in school administration and had spent almost ten years in public education, I did not know who Charlotte Mason was until after I started homeschooling.

Charlotte Mason was a British educator in the late 1800s. Her style was quite visionary and she dedicated herself to improving education. The phrase that is most often associated with Ms. Mason is:

“Education is an Atmosphere, a Discipline, a Life.”

– Charlotte Mason

What Is Charlotte Mason Homeschooling?

The main components of Charlotte Mason’s homeschool philosophy include:

  • Living books (Narrative style books that engage the reader in learning.)
  • Nature study (Learning science though the study of the nature around us.)
  • Narration (Simply put, having students tell you what they learned.)
  • Short Lessons (Under 20 minutes for younger students, up to about 30-45 for high school students)
  • Art and Music (Both appreciation and expression)
  • Lots of good resources (quality books, music, artwork, and experiences)
  • Handicrafts (Projects that develop life skills and habits. Sewing, art, woodworking, etc.)
  • Time Outside (Children need lots of time ‘out of doors’ for learning and play.)

Why A Charlotte Mason Approach To Homeschooling Works For Our Family

I like to say that our family is Charlotte Mason eclectic. For us, that means that I follow a lot of the Charlotte Mason philosophy but only what works for our family. We adapt to meet the needs of each child in each season.

I was first drawn to the Charlotte Mason philosophy because of the idea of using ‘living books’ not ‘twaddle’. We love reading wonderful and rich books, including all of the wonderful animal tales from Beatrix Potter.

Next, I realized early on that having time outside was good for my children (and myself). It took longer to realize how much my children were learning through nature study and exploring our own backyard.

When I first started looking at handicrafts I had a very narrow idea in my mind. As we have progressed in our schooling, I realize that our handicrafts are all of the hobbies my children are free to explore.

By keeping our school day shorter they have more time for their hobbies: photography, weaving, gardening, animals (sheep, chickens, ducks, and goats), and even Legos. Children learn and grow so much through the freedom to explore.

Finally, giving children access to a wealth of good materials to help them learn and grow. By following the principles of Charlotte Mason, my children are exposed to so many wonderful resources.

They study beautiful hymns, lovely works of art, and brilliant classical music. They learn from exceptional authors such as Shakespeare, Tolkien, Dickinson, and Lewis. We love that we can give them such a wonderful buffet of experiences to grow and shape their minds.

Art for the Charlotte Mason Homeschool with You ARE an ARTiST

Homeschool Art Lessons

In a Charlotte Mason homeschool, there are two major components to art education: art appreciation and art expression.

Art Appreciation is helping children know and love great art and artists. Students get exposure to a variety of different types of art and the works of many great artists. Picture study is a frequent component of a Charlotte Mason-style education.

Art Expression is the opportunity for the student to be creative and express themselves through art. Afternoon handicrafts time can be a great place to fit this in your schedule.

Art Lessons For Our Charlotte Mason Homeschool Family

Though Nana would disagree (because You Are An Artist), I do not consider myself an artist. I really need the assistance of art lessons to help me include art in our homeschool.

We love using the You Are An Artist Lessons because they tie in so well with the Charlotte Mason philosophy. Instead of being an entirely separate subject, I can use the lessons to supplement history, hymn study, or nature study.

You ARE an ARTiST Homeschool History Lessons

Homeschool History Lessons with You ARE an Artist Clubhouse

This year we are really excited to be studying the medieval era in our history curriculum and incorporating lots of the Medieval History and Knights and Crusaders art lessons.   We are so excited to be painting castles, shields, knights, and even illuminated letters (which I think is going to be a big hit with my teenage daughter).

Then we even get to incorporate literature into art and history with a Robin Hood art lesson in the Knights and Crusaders course!

You Are An Artist Nature Lessons for Homeschool in Charlotte Mason style.

Homeschool Nature Lessons with You ARE an Artist Clubhouse

Our family loves nature study and getting outside to learn more about the world around us. We have nature journals in the style of a Charlotte Mason homeschool but drawing the plants and animals that they saw was really intimidating to my children.

I want to help my son draw the hummingbirds that come to his feeder each day. So, the next homeschool art lesson we are using is the hummingbird lesson. Nana’s section of Backyard Nature art lessons in the Artist Clubhouse has wonderful insect and plant lessons, like a dandelion and an ant.

Nana’s bird lessons and the many insect lessons are a great way to help them draw what they have seen. Lessons also give them confidence and practice to draw what they see on future nature walks. By drawing a couple of beautiful chalk pastel birds, they get a feel for how to draw the body of a bird and make them more realistic. (The chalk pastel pencils making taking chalk pastels on your nature walk much easier.)

My children can translate those skills to drawing other types of birds as they see them on their walks. Our absolute favorite bird art lesson is the bird in snow lesson in the Winter Clubhouse Course. It is simply beautiful and even makes a great gift.

We love using the You ARE an ARTiST Lessons because they tie in so well with the Charlotte Mason phliosophy. With so many options, we could do art every day!

Art Appreciation for the Homeschool Family

With our You ARE an Artist Clubhouse membership, I can also use the famous artists homeschool lesssons to help me cover both art appreciation and art expression. Nana has paired a short biography with a painting that represents each artist’s style. This allows my children to learn about the artist and then try their own hand at that style. It makes it so much easier for them to remember. 

One of my favorites is the beautiful flower by Georgia O’Keefe, but I think my son would love the painting by Roy Litchenstein. The comic books feel is so exciting. You can tie artist lessons into your history studies with lessons about Michelangelo and other artists from various points in history.

If you love the Beatrix Potter books, you don’t want to miss the biography and lesson all about her. The painting of Peter Rabbit and Jemima Puddleduck is so adorable; I might just have to try it myself.

With so many options we could do art every day and you may be wondering how we fit it all in. In reality, we have found that it works best for us to schedule an art lesson about once a week. Rotating through different art topics depending on what we are studying that week.

We feel it is important to incorporate art into our Charlotte Mason homeschool. Nana makes it easy and not overwhelming.

A Charlotte Mason Homeschool Bundle to go with Art Lessons for the Charlotte Mason Homeschool Family! You Are An Artist Lessons tie in so well with the Charlotte Mason philosophy.

An Awesome Homeschool Resource Bundle!

Stocking up for homeschooling is a labor of love! wants to help you grow your homeschool resources. So we’ve put picked out this beautiful bundle of Charlotte Mason education-inspired books and materials. All of these resources would be wonderful in a Charlotte Mason homeschool or any homeschool!

  • A set Chalk Pastel pencils for your kids to enjoy!
  • A mixed media nature journal
  • Birds, Nests and Eggs Take Along Guide book
  • Four Beatrix Potter books
  • Pocketful of Pinecones by Karen Andreola
  • The House at Pooh Corner by A.A. Milne
  • A Time to Keep by Tasha Tudor

Dawn is a passionate follower of Jesus, wife to Chris, and homeschool mom of four. In her spare time she loves to read, hike, and write on her blog Schoolin’ Swag. She enjoys reviewing curriculum and helping moms find the right fit for their family.

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Homeschool Art for the Delight-Directed Family

Experience how a delight-directed family uses the power of art to enhance their child-led learning adventure! You don’t have to be artistic or worry about a vast supply list. A simple starter set of chalk pastels, a pack of construction paper, and the You ARE An Artist chalk pastel video art lessons are all you need to get started.

Homeschool Art for the Delight-Directed Family: Experience how a delight-directed family uses the power of art to enhance their child-led learning adventure! You don't have to be artistic or worry about a vast supply list. A simple starter set of chalk pastels, a pack of construction paper, and the You ARE An Artist chalk pastel video art lessons are all you need to get started. #YouAREAnArtist #chalkpastels #homeschoolart #delightdirected #delightdirectedhomeschoolart #delightdirectedfamily #childlededucation #unschooling #strewing #delight-directedhomeschooling

We have been homeschooling for over a decade, and what an adventure it has been. While we do use some curriculum, it usually isn’t in the traditional linear sense. It just doesn’t work for our family. We tend to skip around finding joy in the things that interest us as a delight-directed family. Rabbit trails of discovery have zig-zagged across our educational journey. We dive deep into passions, be they dinosaurs, backyard birds, forest animals, moon cycles, the universe, ancient Egypt, World War II, or more recently, everything magical and mythical.

Thus, this week we found ourselves at the table, chalk pastels strewn about, with iced cakes, hot tea, and Nana’s video art lesson of the mythical Phoenix!

Homeschool Art for the Delight-Directed Family
Find Nana’s Mythical Phoenix lesson in the Fairy Tales and Mythical Creatures section of the You ARE an ARTiST Complete Clubhouse. Find the You ARE an ARTiST mugs and t-shirts in our shop!

Delight-Directed Homeschool Art

We follow our interests. And I learn right alongside my kids. My goal is to provide loads of great literature, intriguing documentaries, plenty of fun games, and tons of learning and creative opportunities that coincide with my children’s interests. As part of our child-led education, I’ve been strewing to keep my kids exploring, engaged, and full of ideas. That means our tables are covered in books, games, modeling clay, maps, and hands-on activities. I want to foster a love of learning in my children, and following my kiddo’s interests makes learning more relevant and meaningful.

Delight-directed homeschool art has been super easy with our You ARE An Artist Complete Membership. We like to pair the video art lessons with current read alouds, picture books, or current interests. When my son was obsessed with WWII for two years, Nana consistently added history art lessons to thrill my son. 

Both children have been obsessed with Harry Potter, and lucky for us, creating an enchanting Hogwarts chalk pastel teatime was easy to pull together with Nana’s clubhouse.

When the children were enamored with sharks, chalk pastels came to the rescue again! There were easy-to-follow tutorials on some of the weirdest and most beautiful sharks of the deep!

Homeschool Art for the Delight-Directed Family

Chalk Pastel Teatime For Art In Your Homeschool

Every week, I set the table with treats, tea or hot chocolate, and all of our chalk pastels. Sometimes we light our beeswax candles and pull out our musical wind-up teapot. Our delight-directed family enjoys this weekly ritual of art and treats.

Sometimes the treats are based on current interests. Like the week my daughter finally watched all of the Star Wars movies and then wanted to do Nana’s Star Wars chalk pastel art! We enjoyed plates of Wookie brownies and a Sarlacc bunt cake!

You can make homemade treats or open a box of Little Debbie’s. Serve your children’s favorite beverage. It doesn’t have to be tea. The point is to make it inviting and tap into your child’s natural joy of learning.

Homeschool Art for the Delight-Directed Family

You can easily add art to your interest-led learning adventure! The You ARE AN Artist Chalk Pastel Membership has +700 lessons on everything from:

  • Holidays and Seasonal: Christmas, Easter, St. Patrick’s Day, Spring, Summer, Fall, and Winter Lessons
  • Science
  • Nature
  • History
  • Literature
  • Music
  • Favorite Movies
  • and everything in between!
  • Be sure to check out the entire You ARE An Artist Course Listing to see all that’s offered within the membership.

    There’s even a FREE Homeschool Curriculum Match-Up Checklist you can download to help you pair up history and science interests such as: Ancient History, Middle Ages, early American History, and Modern History art lessons, as well as inventors, space, and more science lessons!

    Then there are the Companion Workbooks for the I Drew It Then I Knew It Series that is perfect if your kiddos want to dive deeper into one of Nana’s chalk pastel lessons. These workbooks offer:

    • Fast Fact Sheets
    • Writing Prompts
    • Biographies and Overviews
    • Research Ideas
    • Nature Observation
    • Planners
    • and more!
    Homeschool Art for the Delight-Directed Family

    Homeschool Art for the Delight Directed Family

    As a delight-directed family homeschooling is all about following interests!

    There are oodles of opportunities for strewing these lovely art resources for my children to discover. And it works!

    Here are just a few of our favorite interest-led art lessons through the years with Nana’s chalk pastel lessons:

    Homeschool Art for the Delight-Directed Family

    Art Together As A Family In Your Homeschool

    Interest-led homeschooling, also known as child-led learning or unschooling, is a great way to nurture your unique child’s interests and passions. You can make it look however you want and in whatever way works best for your family.

    Delight-directed family art doesn’t have to be intimidating, but it can be a powerful learning tool. That’s because art can help solidify subjects your children are already learning about! By following your kiddo’s interests you are making learning more meaningful and intriguing. Plus, you don’t have to be creative or artistic to cultivate creativity in your children. Just present them with the delights of chalk pastel video art lessons. Let them choose what interests them, and let Nana do the rest.

    You ARE an ARTiST t-shirts and mugs

    An Amazing Delight Directed Family Homeschool Bundle

    This collection of resources will help you and your kids on your delight-directed homeschool journey! This bundle includes:

    • 48 Count Prismacolor Chalk Pastels
    • The Brave Learner: Finding Everyday Magic in Homeschool, Learning, and Life
    • Call of the Wild + Free: Reclaiming Wonder in Your Child’s Education
    • Story Cubes Fantasia
    • DK: An Anthology of Intriguing Animals
    • DK: The Mysteries of the Universe
    • DK: The Wonders of Nature
    • Pack of Construction Paper
    Homeschool Books and Supplies for the Delight-Directed Family

    Erin is a writer, blogger, and homeschooler to two intense kids. Her blog is filled with information to help you explore a child led education while making meaningful connections with your children. Discover favorite read alouds, seasonal books, games, art projects, hands-on activities, and learn to just breathe through the ups and downs of life. She loves nature, farm life, good books, knitting, new pens, and hot coffee. Erin is a contributing writer for Weird Unsocialized Homeschoolers. Her work has also been featured on Simple Homeschool and Book Shark.

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    Art Lessons For The Eclectic Homeschool Family

    Eclectic Homeschool

    We were homeschoolers for years before we became an eclectic homeschool family. And honestly, before we became eclectic homeschoolers, we missed out on so much in our homeschool. Now that I look back on it, it felt like we played Simon Says with our curriculum most days. We didn’t do anything unless Simon, ahem, I mean our curriculum teacher’s guide, said we could. Thank goodness that didn’t last! Shifting to an eclectic homeschool has been one of the best choices we ever made.

    An eclectic homeschool is perfect for incorporating art! You can easily add art into practically any lesson, and your kids will thank you. #homeschoolart #eclectichomeschooling #homeschoolartlessons

    What Is Eclectic Homeschooling?

    Eclectic homeschooling is one of the best possible methods for homeschooling. I firmly believe that. I have been coaching other homeschool families for almost a decade now, and eclectic homeschooling works for almost everyone. Because home education isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach, eclectic homeschooling is adaptable and can be customized. 

    There are no rules when it comes to eclectic homeschooling. You have the absolute freedom to mix and match homeschool methods, curriculum, resources, and routines. There is no right or wrong way to homeschool when you are an eclectic homeschooler. 

    An eclectic homeschool is perfect for incorporating art! You can easily add art into practically any lesson, and your kids will thank you. #homeschoolart #eclectichomeschooling #homeschoolartlessons
    • Of all the homeschool styles and methods, eclectic is the one method that you can customize and tailor to your unique family. With eclectic homeschooling, you make it work for you. Not the other way around. With some popular homeschooling methods, you are expected to fit inside the box and follow the parameters of that educational style. But, eclectic homeschoolers can use whatever they love about any homeschool method without fully committing to them. As an eclectic homeschooler, you don’t have to choose one type of learning, teaching, or method. You can carefully curate all the things you like and leave out everything that you don’t! 
    • Eclectic homeschooling works for all learning styles. Since you can pick and choose various curriculum and resources, you can tailor an education to each individual child. For example, a couple of my children are visual and kinesthetic, so we often incorporate You ARE An Artist art lessons to work creatively with our hands and eyes. Chalk pastel art is also a great way to stimulate multiple learning styles at once. 
    • Eclectic homeschoolers are freedom seekers and rule-breakers. Like many of you, we aren’t followers and like to march to the beat of our own drum. Eclectic homeschooling allows for complete freedom to home educate your way! If you don’t like the idea of being held to a style, curriculum, or routine – you will love eclectic homeschooling. 

    Why An Eclectic Approach To Homeschooling Works For Our Family

    When we first began homeschooling, we were stuck on the hamster wheel of checking off all of the boxes. We had no time for the fun stuff, like art. My daughter and I were both miserable. We weren’t enjoying home education. Honestly, in the beginning, I didn’t even realize that home educating could be fun, enjoyable, and relaxed without sacrificing a quality education. At the time, I had no vision beyond what I remembered from public school. I was lucky enough to learn more about home educating and was eager to cultivate a positive environment at home where my children could flourish. 

    Eclectic homeschooling works for my children because we can carefully choose how we approach each subject, curate the curriculum best suited for them, and customize when, where, and how. My children are individuals, each with unique interests, gifts, and learning styles. And I want to foster that to help my children grow into the individuals that God intended. 

    With two out of my three kids being naturally artistic and craving hands-on activities, art helps to keep my kids consistently enjoying our homeschool. They associate creating and having a good time with Nana, and she’s a big deal around here. I remember our homeschool before You ARE An Artist, and it wasn’t nearly as happy and healthy as we are now.

    Eclectic homeschooling encompasses flexibility and the ability to customize the homeschool that we need. That is something I genuinely appreciate now! 

    Eclectic Homeschool

    Art And Eclectic Homeschooling

    Art is the perfect addition to eclectic homeschooling. Since eclectic homeschooling has no boundaries, you can add art to anything. And with so many lessons to choose from, You ARE An Artist has an art lesson on just about everything. Seriously! You are sure to find an art lesson to coincide with almost anything you might be studying at home.

    I say this all the time, but adding fun, creativity, and excitement to your homeschool can make a world of difference in your home and for your children. Art helps them express their creative ability, incorporates hands-on learning, and helps them retain what they have learned. Not to mention, we don’t have to sit stiffly or still when we create. We can sit however we want (or wiggle) and enjoy art!

    In addition to those wonderful benefits, by adding art, you can create an environment that shows your children learning can be a lifestyle! Isn’t that the goal, cultivating lifelong learners?

    Eclectic Homeschool

    Art Lessons For Our Eclectic Homeschool Family

    You can easily add art to any homeschool lesson! Yes, really. I add art to Bible lessons, Holidays like Christmas, Easter, St. Patrick’s Day, Poetry, Tea Time, Science, History, Literature, Music, and plenty of other learning opportunities. My children look forward to our time spent together doing art. Some of our best homeschool moments will be remembered around our kitchen table, creating art with Nana.  

    You ARE An Artist offers art tutorials on unique topics like Hymns, Maps, Inventors, Famous Artists, Presidents, Solar System, The Games, 4 History Cycles, Sharks, Literature, Nature, and so much more. I know as eclectic homeschoolers, you will appreciate that!

    We are enjoying Nana’s Simple Start to Chalk Pastels in the pictures you see here today. I decided on an apple for our back-to-homeschool art teatime. This one was no-fuss with muffins and tea. Usually, I enjoy planning out our tea times with all sorts of books and coordinating art lessons from Nana. We find our tea times with art relaxing and a great way to decompress when our homeschool feels like it could use a boost.

    An eclectic homeschool is perfect for incorporating art! You can easily add art into practically any lesson, and your kids will thank you. #homeschoolart #eclectichomeschooling #homeschoolartlessons

    Here is a shortlist of some of our favorite art lessons through the years with chalk pastels. Each post below has multiple art lessons, all tied to one central theme. I love learning this way because we can blend so many overlapping subjects. I hope this gives you some ideas for how you can use these art lessons in your own homeschool.

    An eclectic homeschool is perfect for incorporating art! You can easily add art into practically any lesson, and your kids will thank you. #homeschoolart #eclectichomeschooling #homeschoolartlessons

    I also want to share some of my favorite resources from You ARE An Artist that helps me blend subjects and age levels altogether at home:

    I Drew It Then I Knew It Companion Workbooks: The I Drew It Then I Knew It Companion Workbooks are designed by an eclectic homeschool mom! Yes, me! It is with much gratitude and appreciation for You ARE An Artist that I can even say that. I was honored when presented with the opportunity to create companion resources for You ARE An Artist and become part of the team. Designing educational resources that are versatile and help families learn together for Nana is kind of my dream job, you know? I carefully create each workbook with cultivating a love of learning in mind. Our goal is that they are flexible for you to use; however they work best in your homeschool.

    In each workbook, you will find a Book List with varying reading levels, 5 Fast Facts, an Overview, Biography, or Writing Prompts, Planners, and Ideas for How To Use our Curriculum. Everything you need for a quick lesson can be found inside. Or use all of the planners included to map out a more extensive study. I also love that the Companion Workbooks help me combine my oldest to youngest learners all in one place over a central topic. There is something special about family-style learning and all of us creating together.

    Clubhouse Complete Membership: When I first found Nana, we were using individual art lessons. But, I soon realized that the way to go is the Clubhouse Complete Membership. With access to over 800 art tutorials and counting, you never run out of fun to add to your homeschool days, weeks, or year. 

    Visual Art Credit: My oldest is in high school, and we also use You ARE An Artist for her Visual Arts Credit. Since we have to accumulate hours for her credit, I allow her to choose what lessons she wants. She can access the You ARE An Artist Calendar within our membership and select a lesson on her own; it’s excellent for promoting independent learning. 

    Eclectic Homeschool

    I hope that this gives you some ideas of how you can utilize a Complete Clubhouse Membership in your eclectic homeschool too! Your kids will thank you for it!

    An Awesome Eclectic Homeschooling Bundle of Resources!

    We’ve put together this beautiful bundle of eclectic education-inspired books and materials that would be perfect for an eclectic homeschool family! The bundle includes:

    Courtney is a Jesus-pursuing, native Texan, homeschool mom of three, and she believes homeschooling can be a peaceful and productive rhythm. At Grace, Grow & Edify she helps families create peaceful homeschooling atmospheres through faith, organizational strategies, and cultivating strong roots at home. She is also the founder of Homeschool Mastery Academy.

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    Art Lessons For The Classical Homeschool Family

    If you’ve ever wondered what the term “classical education” means, you aren’t alone! Maybe the term conjures thoughts of classic literature like Shakespeare. Or studying classical philosophers from Greek and Roman times. 

    Each would likely show up inside a classical education, but they aren’t what makes an education “classical.” 

    Kids sitting on floor drawing with chalk pastels

    What Is Classical Homeschooling?

    Simply defined: A classical education uses materials and methods that fit a child’s developmental stage.

    Classical education calls this “the trivium,” referencing the three basic stages of learning.These stages can coincide with ages, or can be cycled through any time we learn something new!

    • Concrete / Grammar – From preschool through about 5th grade, learners think mostly in concrete terms. They love to repeat information like songs, rhymes, or facts. 
    • Logic / Dialectic – Around age 10 through middle school, children begin to analyze, question and debate. This expansion of thought leads to understanding. 
    • Abstract / Rhetoric – During high school years, students deepen understanding and share their own reasonings and opinions on what they have learned.

    At the core of a classical homeschool is the desire for students to delight in their observations, wonder and ask good questions, and share their knowledge. Classical homeschooling focuses on teaching children HOW to learn, not WHAT to learn.

    Child drawing on the floor with chalk pastels

    Why A Classical Approach To Homeschooling Works For Our Family

    It took me awhile to understand the concepts behind a classical education. For a long time, I thought it was just about mastering facts. As my children grew, I saw there was more to this method than fact acquisition. 

    What I love now about classical homeschooling is how my children grow in their learning in ways that feel quite natural. Eventually, they’ll be able to teach themselves anything they want to learn.

    Until then, I love providing hands-on learning experiences that help us wonder and delight in the process of learning. We really do learn together in our home, which makes our homeschool adventure exciting for everyone. 

    Chalk Pastels and drawings of pyramids and King Tut

    Art And Classical Homeschooling

    I was dubious about my ability to teach art to my children because I never considered myself an artist. The classical method (and Nana!) helped me overcome these doubts. 

    If you know HOW to learn, you can learn anything! Even if you’re new to art, you can learn right alongside your children. 

    Here’s what learning art in classical education might look like: 

    • In the Grammar stage, children learn the basic elements of art like color, line, and shape. They’ll appreciate famous artists and their artwork.
    • In the Logic stage, children experiment with and practice their skills, and discuss famous artwork. 
    • In the Rhetoric stage, students create expressive art pieces and share developed opinions about art topics. 

    These stages aren’t always age-dependent. A young student may have an opinion about art and older students may playfully dabble with paints. We all learn throughout life and move back and forth between stages as needed. 

    “Adjustments are not failures.”

    I saw this quote in an art studio recently. We are always adjusting our children’s art education to fit their age and/or stage.

    Finger blending chalk pastel drawing of King Tut

    Art Lessons For Our Classical Homeschool Family

    Because art was one subject area I felt nervous about, I knew I had to find a good resource to support my own learning alongside my boys. 

    Chalk pastel lessons with Nana has become a favorite resource! The easy to follow lessons and simple materials are perfect for my young artists. Lesson by lesson, my kids were learning to name art techniques like scumbling, dimension, perspective, and more.

    I often try out a lesson myself either before or with the boys, and pay attention to details Nana shares to talk about with the boys later on. 

    Once I discovered Nana’s You ARE an Artist lessons, I was drawn in by how well her lessons integrated with … well, everything!

    When we bring history into art lessons, or make connections between famous people and art, we do more than save time in our homeschool. We teach our children how interconnected our world really is! In classical education, subject integration deepens our understanding all around. 

    I especially love chalk pastel lessons that focus on history, science, and literature, because Nana always includes tidbits of information about the topic, invites kids to wonder about what happened, or asks questions to stir their imagination. 

    When we first started using lessons, my youngest son sat for an afternoon doing lesson after lesson from the Old Testament Bible series. By the time he finished the series he knew so much—and he had created visual memory clues in his chalk pastel paintings to help him recall the stories for weeks! 

    I guess that’s why Nana has so many series of lessons called “I Drew It, Then I Knew It.” It’s aptly named because that is exactly what happens. 

    Having a classical homeschool does not mean we sit around droning facts. Instead, we take a sensory approach to learning facts gently in our morning time. I use picture books (yes, even in upper grades!), poetry, songs, and art to introduce, review, and expand on what we are learning.

    Books and chalk pastel drawings of Ancient Egypt

    Ancient History Art Lessons

    This year, we’ll learn about Ancient History. Chalk pastel art will play a big role! Here’s how we include chalk pastel lessons in our days: 

    I’ve created an Ancient History Classical Morning Menu with a collection of ancient history- related poems, scripture, and picture study to share with the kids each morning. I also curated an ancient history booklist (which you can download free on my blog!). 

    After our Morning Time read-aloud and Menu study, we’ll use the Chalk Pastel I Drew It Then I Knew It Ancient History lessons as a transition into daily work. Lessons on emperors and kings, philosophers and wars, and historic monuments will fit perfectly with our Ancient History studies.

    Check out this timeline scroll we started for this year’s studies! 

    My boys loved hearing about King Tut’s mask of “royal purple” and jewels and hearing about the scarab beetles of Egypt. We’ll be sure to look these facts up for more study later on. We’ll explore Ancient Egypt in chalk pastels and other resources to learn about the pyramids, pharaohs, and ancient lands.

    Chalk Pastels on floor with kid hands drawing

    We’ll study Ancient Greece lessons on the Ancient Games, philosophers, and more. Rome, China, and biblical events each have matching art lessons, too. 

    Kids with Chalk Pastel Drawings of Summer Games

    Because we integrate reading, history, art, and Bible lessons, I cover the same facts multiple times without the kids getting bored. It looks something like this:

    • Read: a book about Chinese philosophers (from my Ancient History book list)
    • Copywork: Chinese poetry (from my Morning Menu)
    • Recite: History sentence about Chinese philosophers (from our Classical Conversations memory work)
    • Observe and discuss: Chinese artwork (from my Morning Menu)
    • Create / Draw: a Chinese philosopher (with Nana from Chalk Pastel)

    That’s five times they hear and engage with the same topic, using different modes of learning: reading, reciting, writing, observing, discussing, and drawing! 

    In the end, the kids learn about Chinese philosophers, and they learn five ways to go about learning anything they want to know! That is the beauty of classical education with art in our homeschool!

    Chalk Pastel Ancient History Drawing

    Chalk Pastel’s Ancient History lessons also come with a handy companion workbook with the Clubhouse membership. This download contains lesson tracking worksheets, fast facts about art lesson topics, “Detective” questions for discussion, and suggested reading lists. These companion books help with transitions in and out of our art time. 

    In each lesson, Nana makes room for different stages of learning. She shares fun facts, demonstrates basic art skills, guides artists to ask questions, and integrates art with other content areas.

    Nana’s methods of teaching art appeal to a wide range of ages and stages. We are so excited to discover Ancient History with art lessons this year!

    A Wonderful Classical Education Bundle!

    Homeschool Books and Materials

    We’ve put together this beautiful bundle of classical education-inspired books and materials we think would be wonderful in a classical homeschool or any homeschool! The bundle includes: 

    • A set of beautiful Chalk Pastels for your kids to enjoy!
    • The Ancient History Classical Morning Menu – 9 months of printables for your morning time! (PDF file)
    • Augustus Caesar’s World – delightful stories from the ancient world
    • Classical Me, Classical Thee – will help you explain classical education to your own students
    • David Macauley’s Pyramid book – richly detailed illustrations share the stories of the pyramids
    • Teaching From Rest – helps you end the stress and worry in your homeschool
    • Classical Historian’s Ancient History Go Fish card game – learn facts about ancient times with a fresh-take on a well-known game

    Julie is a teacher, writer and homeschool mom. Her blog Happy Strong Home shares encouragement for cherishing children, enjoying motherhood, and growing strong families. Discover homeschool resources, natural living tips, and family activity ideas. Julie has been featured on Million Praying Moms, The Old Schoolhouse Magazine, and the Melissa and Doug blog. She offers writing workshops and a “homeschool neighborhood” community to support parents in their homeschool adventures. Find Julie on Instagram to be the first to know when new workshops and community events are available. 

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    Why Adding Art To Your Morning Basket Makes All The Difference

    A morning basket is a great opportunity for kids to learn about a variety of subjects together that you might not always get to during your regular homeschool lessons. Adding art to our morning baskets has been an awesome benefit for our homeschool lessons throughout the day. 

    Starting our homeschool day with art has been a beautiful way to encourage creative thinking throughout the day. In fact, incorporating art into your homeschool lessons has tons of amazing benefits! Keep reading to discover how we are using art in our morning baskets to support our current homeschool lessons and unit studies. 

    Why Adding Art To Your Morning Basket Makes All The Difference - Adding art to our morning baskets has been an awesome benefit for our homeschool lessons throughout the day.

    What is a Morning Basket?

    When I first heard about morning baskets, I was uncertain if I could make the method work for our family. You see, I’m not a morning person. Thankfully, morning baskets work any time of day and I’ve learned how to use a morning basket without actually being a morning person.

    Since I’m not a morning person, I like to choose activities for our morning basket that don’t require me to be functioning at 100%. These are usually things my daughter enjoys and can do with relative independence. Adding video art lessons from ChalkPastel to our morning basket plans makes it easy to incorporate art activities while I’m still waking up.

    Sometimes morning basket activities are called “circle time” or “morning time.” The activities that go into your morning basket are made to bring everyone together, to set the tone for your day, and (sometimes) to incorporate activities and subjects you find yourself falling behind in. 

    Morning baskets are ideal for incorporating art lessons into your homeschool days because they give you a chance to start the day on a creative note. Beginning your homeschool lessons with creativity gest kids excited about the day’s lessons and encourages creative thinking all day long. 

    Morning baskets are great for adding other subjects like poetry, books read aloud, and foreign language to your homeschool days too. We often use our morning baskets to supplement our current unit study or lesson with art projects and other fun activities.

    Art during morning time in our homeschool

    How We Use Morning Baskets To Support Our Current Unit Study

    Currently, we are learning about all things Space. My daughter, Emily, is fascinated by Outerspace so we are learning everything we can about planets, constellations, astronauts, and astronomers. 

    I’ve put together a Space Unit Study with lunar lore, constellations, information on all the planets, and lessons on astronauts and the Apollo Missions. We also put together a really cool themed morning basket to use with this Space unit study.  

    Our Space morning basket will give Emily opportunities to learn more about all the things we’ll be studying through art, games, and experiments. Some of our favorite art activities from the Space morning basket include a themed playdough kit from Playful Days Dough and Usborne’s Astronauts Sticker Book

    Chalk Pastel art during our morning basket time

    The Value of Adding Art To Our Morning Basket

    We might not get to every activity in our morning basket each day, but throughout the month we tend to cover everything. Incorporating art in our morning basket activities has all kinds of great benefits! For starters, art encourages creativity so it’s a great way to begin the day’s lessons.

    Adding art to our morning basket also helps us to start the day on a high note. Emily loves art! She’s always excited to begin the day with an art project or art activity, so art is an easy choice for our morning basket routine. Beginning the day with something she really enjoys helps start the whole day off right. 

    I have found that one of the best ways to add art to our morning baskets is with You ARE An Artist. Lessons are available for all subjects and interests. I can easily pull up one that matches our current unit study when needed. I also use them to help plan our morning baskets each season.

    You ARE an ARTiST has lots of fun video art lessons that match up well with all kinds of interesting topics and unit studies. Here is an example of all fun options we are using for our Space unit study:

    You can access all of these fun and easy video art lessons for your morning basket or homeschool unit studies with a clubhouse membership

    I’m particularly excited about exploring the Solar Exploration Video Art Lessons with Emily because they include a Hubble Lesson that is going to be super fun to do together with our mini unit study on Edwin Hubble. If you’re thinking about beginning morning baskets with your kids this year, this is a great way to get started. Pair a book with an art activity and watch the learning fun begin! 

    About Jessica Waldock

    Jessica Waldock is a writer, photographer, and homeschool mom of one living in sunny Florida. She founded The Waldock Way as a way to give back to the homeschool community that she loves so much. At The Waldock Way Jessica shares tips, tricks, inspiration, and unique resources that help ignite a love of learning in children that will last a lifetime. She inspires families to engage in homeschooling as a lifestyle where relationships come first and interest-led learning prevails. You can connect with her on Instagram, Facebook, or YouTube.