Art and Music Technique

February 24, 2018

 

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Music Technique

Formal lessons with an instrument are a great way to achieve good music technique and theory, but this is not possible for every family. Some suggested resources are given below to provide music technique and theory, giving the student opportunities to learn the language of music and a creative outlet of expression while honing motor skills, refining habits and reinforcing discipline.

 

Music Technique Found in PNEU programs-

·       Singing-carols, French songs, hymns, English songs

·       Learn to play the piano

·       Sight singing-solfege-Tonic Sol-fa

·       ear training and sight reading of music (PNEU P124)

 

Music Technique Suggested by AMITL-

·       Singing-carols, hymns, folk/patriotic songs, French songs

·       Learn to play the piano or another instrument of choice (recorder, guitar, violin, etc.)

·       Music Theory-learn to read basic music notes and symbols either alongside of instrument study or an introductory level for even those not learning an instrument

·       Solfege-Tonic Sol-fa

·       Kindermusik or other music class

·       Church Choir or other organized singing groups

·       The Core Knowledge book series has some basic information about music education for each of grades 1-6 that might provide a base from which to work.

·       Other curriculum providers offer published music resources and curricula. For example, Veritas Press suggests Discoveries in Music for first grade along with Classical Kids CDs and the Classical Kids Teaching Edition. Use whichever programs work best for your family.

 

Additional websites offer some free resources as well. Links are provided at the website; See Resources: The Arts.

 

·       Baltimore Curriculum Project Lesson Plans—these lessons are supposed to be aligned with the Core Knowledge curriculum.

·       Making Music Fun

·       Classics for Kids

 

Note: I have little to no specific experience with these sites, but will link them in the hope that they are  helpful. Both of my daughters received lessons from an excellent piano teacher, including much work in theory. This combined with our study of composers and a little bit of singing was all that we included in our home curriculum.

 

 

Art Technique

 Equally important is the student's own instruction in the skills and techniques behind creating art. This further augments a student's practice in important habits such as attention and application. Drawing, painting and sculpting are just some of the variations in art techniques practiced and some suggested resources will be included to achieve this.

 

Art Technique Found in PNEU programs-

Techniques for art were given more detail; the following notes are divided by form. Pencil use is limited to specific skills. Typically, students work on their skills in observation, memory, accuracy, proportion, light, shade and color work and these are often grouped into three technique areas: drawing, modeling-work and brush-work. From the Parents’ Review article “The Teaching of Art”, Marion Thomson explains that “At least an hour a week should be allowed for the drawing lesson as well as the half-hour or three-quarters allowed for modeling and brush-work respectively” (259).

 

 

Form I; Years 1-3

Accuracy and Observation-careful drawings or sketches of observed nature were made with pencil, with brush-work or with pastels. Some nature specimens that were drawn or painted included: wildflowers, animals, fruits, trees and budding twigs.

 

Proportion, Light, Shade and Color Sense can be achieved with younger children with modeling-work and brush-work. These techniques might include the following:

·       exercises in brush strokes

·       painting freely on large paper using brush, crayon, charcoal or chalk

·       simple flat washes of shapes and of nature

·       using a paint box with specially chosen colors and brushes, only these were to be used for this particular lesson

 

Imaginative work was encouraged with assignments for creating pictures of people, scenes from literature or tales read and holiday and birthday cards.

 

Sometimes assignments were to be created from memory.

 

Form II; Years 4-6

Accuracy and Observation-careful drawings or sketches of observed nature were made with pencil, with brush-work or with pastels. Some nature specimens that were drawn or painted included: wildflowers, animals, fruits, trees and budding twigs.

 

Proportion, Light, Shade and Color Sense can be achieved with modeling and brush-work.

 

These techniques might include the following:

·       exercises, as needed, with brush strokes

·       using a paint box with specially chosen colors and brushes, only these were to be used for this particular lesson

 

Some studies made by the children in Form II include:

·       figures and horses

·       simple sketches from nature

·       trees

·       doors and objects with wheels

·       things used in the kitchen or in the garden

·       autumnal coloring

·       people at work in the field

·       children at play

 

Imaginative work was encouraged with assignments for creating Christmas cards, Christmas calendars with beautiful lettering and original scenes from books assigned from reading or from nursery rhymes.

 

Children in this form were also encouraged to join the PUS portfolio. Sometimes assignments were to be created from memory.

 

Forms III/ IV; Years 7-9

Accuracy and Observation-careful drawings or sketches of observed nature were made with pencil, with brush-work or with pastels. Some nature specimens that were drawn or painted included: wildflowers, animals, fruits, trees and budding twigs.

 

Proportion, Light, Shade and Color Sense can be achieved with modeling and brush-work.

 

These techniques might include the following:

·       exercises, as needed, with brush strokes

·       using a paint box with specially chosen colors and brushes, only these were to be used for this particular lesson

 

Some studies, as appropriate by season, made by the children in Forms III and IV include:

·       landscapes

·       heads and figures

·       animals

·       objects in the house

·       trees

·       light/shade

·       color

·       texture

·       lettering and design

·       figures at work out-of-doors

·       figures on horseback

·       children dancing

·       fruits and vegetables

 

Imaginative work was encouraged with assignments for creating Christmas cards, Christmas calendars with beautiful lettering and original scenes from books assigned from history, the Bible and literature, including poems. Some example assignments were to a) illustrate 6 scenes from history; b) illustrate Christmas Carols and c) illustrate 2 mottoes, proverbs or fables.

 

Children in this form were also encouraged to join the PUS portfolio. Sometimes assignments were to be created from memory.

 

Forms V and VI; Years 10-12

 

Memory drawings might be of:

·       plants

·       figures, e.g., 3-minute poses

·       natural forms

·       groups of people at a fair, the ballet, a Punch & Judy show, etc.

·       20-minute studies of figures in action

·       scenes, e.g., the fair, the market, etc.

 

Studies might include:

·       still-life studies based on geometrical forms

·       interiors in perspective; light and shade

·       sketches of buildings and types of architecture

·       lettering, heraldry, texture and color

·       heads and figures

·       winter (naked) tree forms, in pencil, pen, or chalk; light and shade

·       sketches of landscape studying water reflections, tree forms, and composition - see Ruskin's Modern painters, v. II: Water  Trees

 

Design work might include:

·       borders for plates, mugs, etc., i.e., designs for painted china

·       lino-block printing

·       rugs and tapestry

·       embroidery

·       repeating patterns for textiles or wallpaper

·       illustrations for historical events, with special study of costumes and heraldry

·       illustrations involving the use of symbols

 

Resources

·       What to Draw and How to Draw It by E. G. Lutz

·       Drawing for Young Children by Horace Grant

·       Drawing for Children and Others by Vernon Blake

·       “Drawing Lessons” by F. Monkhouse-Parents’ Review article

·       Consider the Draw Write Now series as well

 

Additional Resources

·       Drafting, Design and Craftwork by F. J. Glass

·       “The Teaching of Drawing and Its Place in Education” by J. Williams-Parents’ Review article

·       The Fesole Club papers by W. G. Collingwood-Parents’ Review articles

·       Sketching and Painting by D. D. Sawer

·       The Way to Sketch by Vernon Blake

·       Animal Drawing and Anatomy by E. Noble

·       The Basis of Design by Walter Crane

 

 

 

 

 

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