I Am An Artist (Collins)
Everyone is an artist, as art is more than a finished work - it's a process found in everyday life. Children are especially adept at these processes - noticing the delicate shape of a feather, feeling the rough texture of bark, and mimicking patterns they see in the sand. This book helps readers see art in a different way through light, poetic text and captivating illustrations. 30 pgs, paperback. - Melissa
Are you an artist? Do you see the world around you in a special way? I Am an Artist shows you how simply observing the delights of nature can inspire you to create. Can you name the colors inside a seashell? You're an artist!
These literature-based unit study curriculum guides are so named because you spend five days in a row (a full week; one day for each subject area) using a particular children's book as the theme for multiple academic subject areas. Five in a Row (FIAR) Volumes 1-3 cover social studies and character, language arts, math, science, and art through 15-21 children's books. The literature selections, primarily picture books, contain positive moral values reflecting Biblical values. Christian content is not incorporated in Volumes 1-3, but is available separately in a Christian Character & Bible Study Supplement. Five in a Row Vol. 4 is for slightly older students (Grades 2-4) and features fewer books, some of which are stretched to two weeks of lessons. Christian content is included in the Volume 4 guide.
Before Five in a Row takes the same concept, but simplifies it for ages 2-4, with multiple activities provided for each book, but not as structured between days of the week.
Beyond Five in a Row is the next step up (for Grades 3+), and these guides are structured around chapter books. Activities at this level incorporate history, geography, science, language arts and fine arts with Christian Character and Bible content available separately.
What is a "unit study"? Briefly, it's a thematic or topical approach to teaching as opposed to the traditional by-subject approach. Rather than teach each subject separately, a unit study attempts to integrate many or all subject areas into a unified study - usually centered around a particular subject or event. Obviously History (the study of events) and Science (the study of "things") are well-suited to unit studies, and usually form the "core" around which other subjects are integrated. Subjects like Bible, Geography, Government, English (writing), and Reading/Literature, Music, Home Economics, Life Skills, and Art, are usually easy to integrate around a core topics. Remaining subjects (Math, Phonics, Grammar, Spelling) can be integrated to some extent via related activities. Each, however, has its own "system" (progression of skills, mastery of "rules") which must be followed to some degree. Since one of the additional advantages of a unit study curriculum is the ability to use it with students of varying ages and skill levels, these subjects are generally taught apart from the core curriculum. This may be as simple as assigning pages in a grammar or spelling book, or using a separate "program" for Phonics and Math. Unit studies also tend to be more activity-oriented than the traditional approach, a real boon to kinesthetic learners. Advocates of the unit study approach site studies showing that children learn best when learning is unified rather than fragmented and when learning is more participatory than passive.
Not to leave out the eager younger children, this volume provides mini Five in a Row- style lessons for youngsters. This book; however, is divided into two parts, the first being similar to the other curriculum guides. Just as in the original series, each unit is built around a simple, classic children's storybook. This book differs from the older volumes in that it is not structured around a week. The purpose is simply to provide an array of activities for each book that engage children and lay the foundation for further learning. Some of the activities are subject related, such as Bible, science, math, language arts, and art; others are various skills such as learning shapes, sequencing, colors or problem solving, and the rest are centered on specific topics, like relationships, contentment, birthdays or another book-related idea. The second part of this book focuses on arming parents with creative ideas to build learning readiness. This section is a treasure trove of activities that help develop reading readiness and motor skills or focus on the arts. Additional activities also capitalize on teachable moments that arise during bath time, in the kitchen, or during a trip to the store. 149 pgs. ~ Steph