Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Spears Art Studio: High School Art Survey


Diane Spears, an artist who holds a doctorate in Christian Education, has written complete art curriculum for both high school and elementary. She is a state certified teacher who has taught in both public and private school settings. Now that she has "retired", she is dividing her time between writing curriculum and her own artistic endeavors.


Spears Art Studio High School Art Survey: A Study From a Christian Worldview is a one year course containing 36 lessons. These cover elements of art such as line and shape, shape and space, space and volume, color, color and texture, form, and printing processes and graphic design. These are set up in units, with an introduction to each element included at the beginning of the unit. There is also a very good introduction section at the beginning, which contains basic information on how the curriculum works, preparation suggestions, tips in evaluating artwork, and an excellent article entitled "Art Is Good For My Brain?".

This is one product I was very excited to have the opportunity to review. My oldest daughter loves art, she keeps an easel in her room and loves to draw as a hobby, but I knew she would need an art program easy to follow but challenging enough to keep her interest. I was hoping this would prove to be the one and I’m very pleased to say that it met all my expectations.

Author Diane Spears writes directly to the students in an easy to understand manner. Each unit contains an Introduction explaining the art element to be studied. Each lesson then contains vocabulary, objectives, a Scripture for copying into the student’s journal, suggestions for Art History (these usually involve a trip to the library so reading through the lesson in advance is recommended and very helpful), a Sketchbook assignment, Visual Memory Exercises, and Instructions and Activities. These are well laid out in individual boxes, making it easy to read and visually appealing.

As with the Elementary curriculum, there is a pdf file available on the web site, which will help in making the supply ordering easier. I have found art supplies to be quite pricey but consider it an investment in my daughter’s education, gifts, and talents. Thankfully the curriculum itself is reasonably priced at only $29.95,shipping included, for the cd-rom version. You also have the option of purchasing the hard copy for $69.95 or the hard copy and the cd-rom package for $84.95, shipping included for both.

The author generously provides a few free samples of the lessons, which is a wonderful way to get a taste for everything this curriculum has to offer. I am thrilled to be able to highly recommend this one and know this is a product we will continue using and loving in our home.

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