Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Teens and Art

We had a busy school day today. Kal-El worked on the teens boards and beads; the geometric cabinet; the "j/ge/gi" reading folder; and placed the flags on the map (only the ones that come with our flag board) for North and South America, Antarctica, and Australia. On his violin he practiced See Saw, Twinkle var. A, the A Major scale, The Long Song, and The Monkey Song.

Me Too played I Spy with me while he worked on some puzzles. He was able to tell me the end, middle, and beginning sounds of several words. He is really close to being ready for the movable alphabet. Today he played See Saw and The Long Song on his violin.

Afterward, we took the easel outside and they boys each painted six pictures or so. Here is Me Too working on "a turkey."

Kal-El working on a landscape....

After I took this picture I raised Kal-El's easel. Me Too was on Kal-El's "usual" side. It was a perfect height for him because he has grown. Not only had Kal-El outgrown his usual side of the easel, but Me Too's old height was ridiculously short for him. I had to raise it to it's highest holes!

I think four or five of Kal-El's paintings were all portraits of his little girlfriend that he had a playdate with last week. Don't worry M___. Despite the fact that she gave him a swollen nose he is STILL in love. He painted her in many different dresses and crowns. This one was one of my favorites:

Me Too's "turkey":

I really dislike having the boys paint. It makes them soooo happy though. I made the mistake of ordering the powdered tempera a few years ago. I figured we would go through a lot of paint and it was the most economical way. We are set for years :) Unfortunately, the powdered tempera is not washable. This adds to my general sense of panic when they paint. It also takes FOREVER to mix two kids a small pot of eight colors each. It takes even longer to wash sixteen brushes when they are done. It takes even longer to wash the pots. Then I have to wash the easel. Then I have to wash the kids. Me Too likes to lean over and peek at the paint in the pots all the time. Every time he does it he gets his hair in his painting. He looked very punk at the end of art today. At least we were outdoors and I didn't have to wash the house. The thought of putting paint out for them to use independently, in the house, makes it a little hard for me to breathe.

I think I will wind up donating the powdered paint to a school and buy some premixed washable paint that I can just squirt into the pots when I want. Before I know it, they will be past the paint in pots stage anyway, swishing their own single brush in a bucket, and mixing colors on a palette.


  1. Too cute! I love it when they find their first "girlfriend". The paintings are really creative and full of vibrant colors. Thank you so much for adding our homeschool blog to the Ultimate List. Looks like you guys are getting a lot of school work accomplished!! Thank you for sharing.

  2. When I was teaching preschool we added a little dish soap to the paint to make it more washable. http://www.ohdeedoh.com/ohdeedoh/how-to/how-to-use-dish-soap-as-a-paint-stain-preventative-084365

    In my son's studio they put the paint in squeeze bottles. When the child wanted to paint they added the colors they wanted to a little paint tray and used one paint brush with rinse water. The paint trays are available at most craft stores. We often just paint with the primary colors and my son mixes them to create additional colors. It would help reduce the number of paints you have to mix.

    It must be rewarding to see the boys hard work pay off.

  3. Tell me more about your adjustable easel, please!

  4. Liz,

    It's just a run-of-the-mill Melissa and Doug easel. I bought it because it was a quarter of the price of the one made by Alex Toys. The Alex Toys version has a magnetic chalk board. Our is not magnetic. Both the boards themselves and the trays are independently adjustable.

    I don't use mine as "out of the box." I don't use paper rolls so I moved all of the trim pieces behind the board so that the paper lies flat and it is easier to clean. I also called the company and had them send me an extra tray with cup holders. (It usually has one cup holder side and one trough side). I have the trough side in the basement for future use. I also added casters to make it easier to roll around the house. We don't really have room for it here so I keep rolling it around when it gets in our way. It is usually stored in the school, but I roll it out prior to a work session.