• Felicia Mollohan

ArtAchieve - Entire Level I Review

I have to tell you that our 2nd grader was thrilled to be able to use ArtAchieve's Entire Level I for the past few weeks! He loves to do art, but this Momma isn't so great at it, so this was a wonderful resource to have.

This program is a unique one, in a good way. I thought that it was more than just an art class. They show you what state learning objectives that they are working on as they complete each lesson. I don't follow the state objectives, personally, but I think that it's interesting to know what skills they will be learning (I think it's the ex-public school teacher in me). They don't stop with just art, though. Each of the items that they draw are from actual pieces art or architecture. For example, the drawing of the bug that my son is holding up in the picture above, is actually from one of these:

Cool, right? I love that these are actually pieces from their journeys throughout the world. Speaking of that, ArtAchieve actually gives you Cross Curricular Connections for the pieces of art. For example, when I was going to have my son work on drawing the Chinese dragon, he was able to see pictures of actual Chinese dragons while they talked about them. I have to tell you - this was my son's favorite lesson!

Also, when he was going to draw the Hungarian insects, they taught him about insects! Science and Art! Wonderful!

Look at those smiles! YES! This was the first full lesson that he did that created a project. I say it that way because he worked through Lesson 1 which was actually a lesson on the 6 different types of lines: straight, an oval, a curve, a dot, an angle, and a wavy line. The lesson explained that if they could draw those six lines, they could draw anything! That was reassuring to my novice artist (and to his un-artistic mother).

Here's how these lessons work:

* There is a warm-up page for each lesson. This is a great page to print out for your child to work on. My son didn't like doing these pages because he wanted to just jump into the "real" picture. I felt like these were important for him to work through as they "broke up" the larger picture into smaller parts.

* Then there is the printout of what they are going to draw. I have to tell you that I love this because, especially at this level of ability, "we" need something to look off of. As we were going through the lessons, I would point to this page to the part that he was to draw next to put it into context for him.

* There are PowerPoint presentations of the lessons or a Video! I always love a choice!

Before you go through the lesson, they have you do a "calm down" procedure where they have you rub your hands together until they are warm and them hold them over your eyes to relax. They remind you that you can do this whenever you feel like you need it throughout the lesson.

Grandma Edie even got in the act one day!

He thought it was so cool to be able to do his art class with Grandma!

I have to tell you, that they go over a few "rules" of art before each and every lesson. Here are what they are:

My favorite rule is #5! That means that my drawing is as good as one done by Leonardo DiVinci? Right? Just Kidding!

Here are some more pictures of some of the projects that he was able to complete!

I got in on the act for this one! I guess I didn't do too bad.

I have to be honest, though. There were still tears that fell during some of the lessons. Sometimes his 7 year old hand wouldn't do what he wanted it to do or what he saw in his head, and that's frustrating! That was when I knew that it was time to stop for the day and that he had too much. Sometimes, though, he wanted to keep going. For example, the teacher uses a black Sharpie marker to draw with. That didn't work for us. It was easier for our son to manipulate a pencil to draw with. No biggie!

Anyways! I really enjoyed being able to go through ArtAchieve's Entire Level I with our 2nd grader and he liked it too! We might be looking into getting the next level of lessons for next year.

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