Making homeschooling work for artsy students is key to an engaging experience. You know because you have a student needing these considerations.
Some of the considerations to include for artsy students are: using flexible schedules; creating opportunities for new artistic expression and creativity; community outreach and mentoring opportunities with arts; connecting art thematically through the curriculum in ways that reflect your student’s interests; and, the opportunity to learn about and play with new mediums that inform, inspire and encourage students to move beyond their current knowledge base and expressions.
Many artistic students yearn for more freedom in the physical experience of schooling. And by homeschooling, you are certainly offering that experience! By providing artistic students the opportunity to sketch their schedules and have flexibility in when and where they study, they feel inspired to follow their own creation. When they find a schedule that does not work for them, they can always create a new one.
Creating Opportunities for New Artistic Expression
Students often find themselves repeating methods or mediums in artistic expression. Buying a variety of materials for students to use and recycling objects in the household promote creativity and a way to try out new mediums at a low cost. In this day when so many are interested in recycling and sustainability, it is also easy to find people who will appreciate such artistic creations. Encourage your child to use the materials around them and use them for their own purposes.
One of the most important qualities of an artist is being open to new forms of expression. Support your budding artist as s/he learns new ways to create art. Some ideas for supporting your student is to introduce a range of mediums. Paper cutting, water color painting, glass blowing, sand painting and art through movement are examples for some to explore. It is possible that your child will like some more than others, and there are easy, accessible ways to try out new mediums. You can find many online workshops to support your student and help them try out new mediums. You can look at your local library or rec center for community art classes or find an watercolor glazing technique demonstration. Learning from professionals will give them the experience to be able to practice at home. Before formal education people used to shadow in apprenticeships. Giving kids exposure to different experiences will help them find their own passions.
Community Outreach and Mentoring Opportunities
Students need the opportunity to see artists of varied ages and types sharing their work in public. Go with your child to small venue art museums and exhibits and small concerts in coffee shops where they get to see other local artists at work. You and your child will be able to talk with local artists and get insights and mentorship opportunities in an organic way. Students will also be able to explore opportunities for sharing their work, both now and in the future.
Connecting Art Thematically through the Curriculum
Students engage with materials that they like, and for an artistic student it will be incredibly helpful to tie art and artistic themes across the curriculum. Specifically, connecting the particular artistic interests of your child across the curriculum will be helpful. If your child is a guitar player, for example, find ways to connect across history, science and language arts. The sky is truly the limit when it comes to bringing the arts into your curriculum.
Your child will appreciate the efforts you go to make his/her experience a robust and varied one that allows creativity to develop naturally, with your support, of course.