We've done more art in our homeschool in the last 4 years than in the previous 14 years combined. Which is why I was happy to get the opportunity to review for ArtAchieve. We've tried a variety of art instruction formats, and I like video lessons where someone else gives precise directions and we can all watch together and pause as needed.
We received the Entire Level 1 of the program. There are currently 5 levels available, which can be used with kids as young as six. My primary reviewers are 12 and 9, and my 16 and 17 year olds each joined us for one project, and I did one, as well.
One of the things I like about ArtAchieve is that there is a printable warm up exercise for each lesson.
This is a drawing program, and the students copy lines in boxes, making the same shapes they will use in their lesson drawing, but jumbled up, so they really have to focus on reproducing what's in front of them, not drawing what they think something should look like.
After the warm up, the instructor takes you through a step by step tutorial for how to create the day's project. You have a printed version of the example in front of you to copy from as you work.
These are our finished result for The Czech Cat, which is a free lesson that I would encourage you try with your students to see how you (and they) like it.
Remember those example pages? They make good coloring pages for any younger kids in the house, once the lesson is over.
This is from the Hungarian Insects lesson.
Another aspect that I liked about ArtAchieve was that the teacher didn't just show you how to draw a bug. He also talked about ways to color or design the finished bugs, and how to add a background to your project.
Something that Jack didn't like about this program is the combination of shiny paper and Sharpie markers, which makes a noise that bothers him. We noticed it a few times on the video, and he frequently got upset with Hannah for "drawing too loud."
When we got to the Haitian Gecko, school was out for the summer, and Sam was interested in what we were doing, so he joined us.
Sam's gecko on the left, Hannah's on the right. Jack was not happy with his. He actually had a hard time with this program. Part of it was the sounds, but another issue was that he is not a confident artist. He rarely likes what he produces when we do art.
The Dragonfly from Ecuador used markers, oil pastels, watercolor and glitter glaze!
We're new to glitter glaze. I bought some for this project. Having played with it, I now know I could have just used extra fine glitter and Mod Podge (both of which we already have) instead of buying a whole different art supply.
A third feature that I enjoyed about ArtAchieve is that each project in Level 1 is themed around artwork from various parts of the world, and the teacher included little tidbits of information about the country, the creature, or the art medium that inspired the project that we were working on.
The finished Dragonflies from Ecuador, complete with glitter glaze.
Notice how it gives the wings and the bubbles a bit of a shimmer?
These little guys remind me of Mooshu from Mulan.
Being that we love China around here, I was delighted that this level includes Chinese Dragons!
I even tried the dragon lesson, just to confirm that, nope, I'm still not an artist. My dragon looks like it's wearing striped pajamas instead of scales, and it seems to have bananas instead of claws. I'm pretty sure that if I did a few more copies, I could have come up with one that I liked, though. The instructions are easy to follow.
While Jack was not crazy about this program, Hannah did quite well with it! I'm very impressed with her owl here.
In the Owl from Bali lesson, students use white colored pencil on black paper to outline their drawing, and pastels to color it in. Hannah (9) and Brianna (16) did the Owl lesson together. Brianna is naturally artistic, so I knew she wouldn't have a problem coming in to the middle of the series.
We have 4 more lessons to go, and I look forward to sharing more of our finished projects with you.
ArtAchieve offers two purchasing options, which I think is great. You can purchase a level, like the level that we received, which contains 11 lessons, or you can purchase single lessons from any level, individually. Unlike programs where you need a separate book or level for each student, ArtAchieve can easily be used in a group setting, with a variety of ages, which makes it a good value for homeschool families with multiple children.
You can connect with ArtAchieve on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, G+, and Instagram. Other families in the Crew received levels 1, 2, or 3 of the program. Please click the box below to see their reviews.
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