Thursday, August 07, 2008

Crayons' Grade Two: What's Left? (Art, Music, This and That)

This year the composers for Ambleside Online are Johann Sebastian Bach, Franz Liszt, and half a term each of Gustav Mahler and Anton Bruckner.

The artists are Botticelli, Caspar David Friedrich, and Vincent Van Gogh.

Our composers are Mark O’Connor, Igor Stravinsky, Franz Liszt, and Antonin Dvořák.

Our artists are Paul Kane, Cornelius Krieghoff, William Kurelek (the “3 K’s” of Canadian art); Caspar David Friedrich; Giotto, and Vincent Van Gogh. We're also doing a short unit on Andy Warhol and pop art to go along with a museum exhibit.

Why the differences?

Well, let's start with the artists first. The only really different term is the first one, when I wanted to incorporate some Canadian art, particularly that of Western Canada to go along with our geography studies. We read about Van Gogh a couple of years ago and I would have skipped him this time in favour of Giotto (he goes well with the Middle Ages theme in history, plus we're doing a book about St. Francis and there are Giotto-St. Francis connections, plus the illustrations in the book are done in a style that mimics Giotto); but Crayons asked if we could keep Van Gogh in there too. She doesn't care if we've already studied him. So that's that.

For composers, I have nothing against Bach, but he just didn't seem to fit with the art for the fall. I really enjoyed the term we did on Mark O'Connor and Igor Stravinsky a few years back, and O'Connor's "American Seasons" fits well with our time-and-seasons emphasis. (Plus we already have the CDs!)

Mahler and Bruckner just seemed a bit heavy to do with a seven-year-old who hasn't had a lot of experience yet with different composers. But I did want another European composer from around the same Dvořák should work fine.

And then there are things we haven't totally figured out yet: drawing, painting; musical instruments (we have a keyboard, guitars, and a lap harp that all the Squirrelings have messed around with at one time or another); the sewing club that a friend wants to start; probably dancing again at the community centre; cooking, helping at home. Charlotte Mason encourages all children to learn "real" handicrafts, and I'm leaning toward weaving this year since Crayons owns a small wooden frame loom and I have some project ideas I think she could do.

And memory work: poems and Scripture.

And outdoor play time.

And indoor play time. It's all part of learning.

Grade Two, here we come.


molytail said...

I'm leaning toward weaving this year since Crayons owns a small wooden frame loom and I have some project ideas I think she could do.

You just reminded me of something I hadn't thought of in years! I had a plastic weaving thing when I was about...oh maybe 9 ... I remember getting it for Christmas... it was plastic, with these tabs on it, and came with these stretchy coloured elastic-y sort of things that you weaved over and under to make potholders. Well, you could prolly make more than that - but I remember it mainly as the pot holder maker. :-P

minivanlife said...

Hi! We're using AO for the first time this year. We started on Monday and love it! I have a 2nd grader as well, but we are using AOyr1 for him. Also have a girl in AOyrK. Looking forward to reading more of your blog!

Mama Squirrel said...

Welcome! I hope you have a great year!

A Dusty Frame said...

ahh the pot holder maker;)!
I LOVED mine.

I enjoyed reading your plans for Year 2.

Auntie Knickers said...

I love your ideas about having different disciplines in the curriculum go together with a common theme. And I definitely agree about the Mahler, Dvorak with his folktunes is a much better choice for younger kids (or for me, for that matter - Mahler always sounds like movie music to me.)I found your blog by Googling for "Christmas Chapters" and left a comment there on your 2005 post.

Keri said...

The 'Getting to Know the World's Greatest Artists' are fun for kids to read on there own, in between the serious stuff. Quite often my kids come to me after reading it and tell me some facts they've learned!

Cindy said...

I'm a little more fly by the seat of your pants when it comes to artists and composers. I wish I were more organized about it, but toddler is stealing time that would've normally gone toward planning! ;)

Have a great year!

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