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Rather than discussing art history and art criticism, I highly recommend
getting them out to different museums and sites in your community. At the
museum, they can pick their favorite painting(s), talk about what they like
and don't like about it/them and research info about the artist.
I also recommend have really interesting stuff in your classroom to inspire
the kids to look and draw/paint - natural stuff like shells, bee hives,
animal horns, etc. and machine made stuff - kitchen tools, mechanical
stuff....and stuff related to what the kids are studying in their classroom
I've been volunteering at a public school in a 3rd & 4th grade - we went
apple picking last Fall, and because the students have been learning how to
knit, saw sheep shearing in the Spring. We went to the Insect Zoo at the
Smithsonian where the kids drew insects on exhibit and did research about
insects. For Chinese New Year, I brought in a Chinese Calligrapher who did
a wonderful workshop on Chinese Calligraphy.
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