Another bonus of these art lessons is that they are based on different countries and cultures around the world. This is the biggest reason why we chose to use level 2. Several of the countries that we are learning about in our geography studies next school year are included in these art lessons. It is suggested that all students (even adults) start with level 1 and proceed from there. There are a couple of projects in level 2 that are going to really challenge my kids, but we will just go slow and they will take their time and do their best.
These lessons are really unique in that there are 2 methods of instruction delivery. The first is a step-by-step video (our preferred method of instruction). The second is a powerpoint that can be advanced as the student completes each step of the lesson. We prefer to watch along with the video and pause as needed in order to keep up with the instructor. Suggestions are also given for quiet music to be played in the background.
At the beginning of each lesson, the art rules are reviewed. I appreciate that one of these rules is that there should be no talking while they are creating. If you know my kids, then you know this is a challenging, but good practice to get into. Not talking allows them to really focus on the art work they are making. Another rule is that there are no mistakes in art. If you make a line that you don't like, simply make another one that you do like. They are instructed that if they don't like their art, they need to still finish it. Only after their project is finished can they make a decision. If they still don't like it, that is ok. They can try again.
A warm up is given at the beginning of each lesson. These are in the form of unique downloads that the students use to practice the types of lines they will be drawing in the project. It is a good way to warm up and get thinking about the project. I also like that the students draw with a permanent marker on their project. It really forces them to think before they draw. It also prevents them from erasing holes in their project.
Also included are cross-curricular lessons and activities. If you click on each lesson in the main menu of the website, there are several suggestions for extending the studies for each art project. There are videos and book suggestions as well as ideas for learning about the history of the art project or the culture of the country the project comes from. I like this addition to the art curriculum and can see how this could really turn into a unit study of sorts based on art. I know lots of students who would respond very well to this type of learning!