Posted on

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. 

Posted on

Ancient Egypt Lessons Perfect For Your Homeschool

If you are looking for homeschool resources for your ancient Egypt lessons, then be sure to check out Nana’s ancient Egypt chalk pastels! They are perfect for adding a bit of hands-on art to your next history lesson.

Ancient Egypt Lessons Perfect For Your Homeschool: If you are looking for resources for your ancient Egypt lessons, then be sure to check out Nana's ancient Egypt chalk pastels! They are perfect for adding a bit of hands-on art to your next history lesson. #ancientegyptlessons #exploringancientegypt #exploringancientegyptwithchalkpastels #ancientegypt #chalkpastelartlessons

I love to strew interesting resources around our home to help spark curiosity and to help foster a learning-rich environment. So, when my son mentioned his interest in the architecture of the great pyramids, I started looking for resources.

The first thing I did was to gather up all of our books on the subject. We have quite a few visual encyclopedias, a timeline of history, and even a pop-up book of ancient Egypt! I laid them all out in an easy-to-access manner and waited. Suddenly my son was interested in the process of mummification, the gods and goddesses, pharaohs, and daily life for the common folk of ancient Egypt. So, I looked up documentaries exploring ancient Egypt to help with his thirst for knowledge!

Exploring Ancient Egypt with Chalk Pastels

Ancient Egypt Lessons

When I discovered that Nana had new chalk pastel art lessons specifically for ancient Egypt, I was so excited! I love presenting our current interests with hands-on activities, and art is just that. When my kids can create art while we read aloud about a particular subject they are interested in, it helps solidify the knowledge they are learning in ways that dry, rote memorization can not.

Exploring Ancient Egypt with Chalk Pastels

Exploring Ancient Egypt in Your Homeschool

When exploring ancient Egypt, you won’t need an expensive and intimidating art list. All you need is a starter set of chalk pastels, a pack of construction paper, and Nana’s video art lessons!

We started, of course, with the great pyramids! These ancient wonders are so captivating to study! The different theories on how they were built are fascinating.

Exploring Ancient Egypt with Chalk Pastels

Tutankhamun, also known as King Tut, had one of the most well-preserved tombs of any pharaoh. Learning about the mummification process as well as King Tut himself was pretty interesting.

You can not go exploring ancient Egypt without stopping to appreciate hieroglyphics and the Rosetta Stone! The Rosetta Stone was the key to deciphering hieroglyphics!

Finally, there was the map of ancient Egypt and the Nile. It can be confusing at first because the upper kingdom was in the south and the lower kingdom was in the north. Or how the Nile flows from the south to the north and empties into the Mediterranean Sea. But the geography eventually stuck.

Exploring Ancient Egypt with Chalk Pastels

Learn About Ancient Egypt with You ARE An Artist Clubhouse Membership

With the You ARE An Artist Clubhouse Complete Membership, you will have access to four Ancient Egypt Video Art Lessons:

  • Pyramids
  • King Tut
  • Hieroglyphics
  • Ancient Egypt/Nile Map

You can also add in the corresponding Old Testament Bible Lessons:

  • Joseph’s Coat of Many Colors
  • Moses and the Parting of the Red Sea

Did you know that you’ll have access to ALL of Nana’s other history art lessons too?

That’s oodles of art history, folks!

Exploring Ancient Egypt with Chalk Pastels

More Homeschool History Lessons with Chalk Pastels

I love that as my children’s interests carry them back in time, and Nana has art lessons that help cultivate and inspire them! Where will their interests lead them next? I don’t know, but I’m certainly excited to find out!

Exploring Ancient Egypt with Chalk Pastels

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.