I have a question for anyone experienced with the Creating a Masterpiece DVD’s.
I’m scheduling handicrafts for the coming year and I plan on using some of the CaM DVD’s. I had planned on going through the level 1 DVD’s and then moving on to level 2. But, when I looked over the Enrichment Year ideas I noticed that one topic/skill is worked on for each term. Since each DVD varies from 3 to 8 lessons, should I work on one skill moving through the levels (such as pastels level 1 & 2 in a term) or vary the topics working through level 1 and then moving onto level 2 (such as pastels level 1 & sculpture level 1 in a term)? Or, should I try to stretch out 1 DVD per term?
I searched the CaM & SCM websites for scheduling suggestions, but didn’t find any help. Does anyone have any ideas of the best way to use this resource?
Sharon is our pastor’s wife so we use and LOVE her DVDs. The main suggestion she gives for scheduling is to do one lesson a week for about an hour. Sometimes for us, that means stopping before we’ve gotten completely through one of her lessons (I have some meticulous kids that spend quite a lot of time doing various aspects of these projects. As far as order to complete the DVDs it’s very flexible – though if you tell me the age of your kids I can give you an idea of which DVDs are easier – if you’re starting with 5 or 6 year olds. I don’t think it’s going to hurt to mix media in each term and if you have lots of supplies available they can practice their favorite or current media in their freetime.
I have 2 boys, 13 & 9. My oldest is very artistic and these DVD’s should really help build his skills. My youngest loves art but is eager to get things done quickly. I plan on finishing up the summer with level 1 pencils. It has 7 lessons and they appear to be easy to finish. I am planning on starting term 1 of this new year with level 1 pastels. It only has 3 lessons but looks like they may take longer. I had planned on choosing another level 1 DVD to finish out the term, but now I am questioning if I should choose level 2 pastels instead. Which would you choose?
I met Sharon this summer at a conference. She was so friendly and helpful! But I hadn’t began my scheduling yet so I didn’t think to ask her.momof3Participant
I plan on using this too and this is a great question. I’d love to know what others who have used this think. Do all of the level 1 first? Or continue each subject to next level??
You could go either way. If your boys REALLY like working with pastels then they could definitely move on to a level 2. If they want to try something different that’s ok too! Pastels are an easier medium to work with as they are very forgiving. The lessons in pencil drawing are more meticulous in terms of sketching things out and then having to erase, but your boys are old enough that it shouldn’t be a problem – it is just a more difficult DVD than the others in that level. If you want to have them do art class together, that’s fine, but keep an open mind about the possibility that it may be better for them to work on their own – especially if your oldest has that very artistic personality that requires perfectionism in his art work.
Oh, thank you Rebekahy for your experienced advice. I now feel confident in planning each term loosely. I’ll plan out each term but just have a few options ready for flexibility and when that creativity burst may hit. I’m also looking forward to the new woodworking DVD from SCM to add to the mix!
BTW, my youngest has only been 10 for 6 months…if he knew I told everyone he was 9…Michelle G.Member
Could anyone tell me at what ages Creating a Masterpeice is best suited? I have a very artistic 12 yo, and a bit art reluctant 8 yo, but the acrylic dvd looks wonderful. Would it be too much for my 8yo?
Thanks so much,
I, too, would love to hear from the experienced CaM users on the best suited age. Mine are 6, 8 and just turned 10. Zero art experience in our home as there was never interest (in fact, much push-back), but now suddenly spending time with the sketch book is a number one favourite activity. I want to take advantage of this new, keen interest! I feel like it would be best to start with a pencil sketching program, but with Rebekahy’s comment above about the CaM pencil sketching program being one of the more complicated or challenging ones, I am hesitant. Would love advice, thanks so much! Angie4myboysParticipant
My ds9 would really like to try some of these. I think we are looking a the pastels to start. I thought it listed on the website how many lessons were on each DVD, but I can’t find that anywhere. Can you give me an idea of how many lessons are on the Level one DVD? My son is ADHD, so to spend an hour on anything would be stretching him to the limit. Is this something we can slow down a little more? Like maybe only do half a lesson, possibly two times a week? Has anyone found their child gets bored working on the same project over several weeks like that?
Let’s see if I can answer all your questions in one post – for full disclosure as I mentioned above Sharon is my pastor’s wife and I help her at homeschool conventions SO while I’m not a full-time paid employee, you are getting advice from someone who has represented Creating a Masterpiece. I am a homeschooling mom who has no background in art (in fact the reason that Sharon added the supply link to her website was because I called her from Hobby Lobby completely lost about which paint brush did what – with the supply link directly to Dick Blick that problem is solved!)
I have seen children as young as 4 do SOME of the DVDs from Level 1. The Lighthouse Acrylic, my own four year old did the Turtle sculpture, and a third did the butterfly silk. Now, that said, you ARE going to have to help a 4 year old and 5 year old and that’s OK!!! (Unless they don’t want your help – in which case, just gently remind them what it is that Sharon said to do on the DVD until they’ve done it to the best of their ability). So the question about the 8 year old doing the Acrylic – it shouldn’t be a problem. Little kids are going to produce beautiful masterpieces that they would not be able to do without Sharon’s instruction, but the older a child is the more they will get out of the video in terms of learning concepts and techniques and skills to build on outside of just following the DVDs – so they can work on their own projects.
Lessons per DVD: We started with the Peaceful Lake pastel with my 6 and 8 (at the time) year olds. Pastels are VERY easy to work with and very forgiving. That particular dvd just has 3 lessons, but YES!!! feel free to stop BEFORE your child loses interest. We work for an hour and regardless of where we are in the lesson we stop after an hour – this helps us to stretch out the DVDs and because my girls like to work more slowly and meticulously – something they did NOT do prior to watching these DVDs. Every DVD has a different number of lessons, but on average you can expect to find 4-6 lessons on any given DVD.
Lessons in Pencil: I think I may have overstated it’s difficulty. We started this video after finishing the pastel and so the pencil was a much more detailed and disciplined project than the pastel – we LOVED the pastel, because right away you could see it becoming this beautiful work of art – the pencil is more slow going, BUT if your children are really enjoying sketching then I think they could definitely handle it (we only watched a lesson and then decided we wanted to go with a more colorful project – so while I’ve watched the Pencil dvd, we never actually completed it – we’ll be doing it this year). Here is a review that I found online of the Pencil DVD so hopefully this is helpful to you – her daughter looks quite young and did a beautiful job. http://homeschoolinmama.com/creating-a-masterpiece-lessons-in-pencil-sunflower/ Here’s another more thorough review http://www.kathysclutteredmind.com/2013/03/creating-masterpiece-review-sunflower.html – this one cites that the DVD moved too quickly and she had to pause it – I would like to suggest that you SHOULD be pausing the videos QUITE!!! frequently. The runtime on most DVDs is about 15 minutes per lesson, but as I mentioned earlier – this 15 minute segment should take about an HOUR to complete because you DO NEED TO PAUSE the dvd. An older child can pause the DVD on their own, a younger child will need mom to help with this.
Boredom?: No, my children LOVE to work on their art DVDs, they would do them as many times as I let them, they’d do them from memory as long as I keep supplying them with materials to complete their work. I have not heard from any parents that have used the DVDs that their child found them to be boring.
If you have more questions you can always post questions on Creating a Masterpiece’s Facebook page and one of her staff (sometimes even Sharon, but right now she is teaching art in AFRICA!!! to help seminary students support themselves) will get back to you right away. It’s a small family owned and operated company, so even if her daughter or son-in-law are the ones that reply to your question, I guarantee that the answer came from Sharon at some point in time!
RebekahKatrina in AKParticipant
My boys and I did The Turtle this spring, and they had a great time and enjoyed it. My 4yo didn’t get into detail as much, but still had fun creating and painting, and my 6yo created a beautiful turtle. I bought the entire Level 1 set, and Z picked The Turtle to work on first.
The boys are now 5 and 7, and I think we will work on Peaceful Lake next. My elder has a little experience doing pastels with MasterKitz, so this will be very fun.
I have been having a great time doing art with my boys. We all look forward to it.cherylramirezParticipant
My children, ds11 and dd15 really enjoyed the “Peaceful Lake” pastel lesson. In fact my dd went on to do a couple more pastels in different color families and they are lovely! We are doing colored pencils next! Thank you for the clarity Rebekahy! Have you been to Hidden Acres?AngelinaParticipant
Thanks, Rebekahy, for the details on the pencil sketching versus the pastels. I love the way you described the pastel projects as becoming beautiful pieces of work more easily/quickly versus pencil sketching. I am so new to all this, I would not have realized this. Sounds like the pastels will be a great place to start for us! Thanks again. Angie
Cheryl – Sorry I just found this link to repost for someone else and saw your question. YES, I have been to hidden acres. It is as wonderful and peaceful as Sharon is! Her studio where she teaches is in one of the “out” buildings at their residence. It’s on an acreage outside of town and they have a bonfire and hayrack rides there for our church in the fall. Sharon and Lonnie BUILT their home themselves… not like, hired contractors to do everything, they actually DID the work!!!! They would go to the hardware store and buy what they needed for the next step of their home and then complete that step with the advice and help of the people at the store as well as the research they would do on how to complete it. Sharon attributes her many years of learning how to complete art projects as part of the reason she knew she could start and follow-through to completion building her house. There were only two things they didn’t do (if I remember correctly – electrical and drywall). She used to do summer art camps for 2 days or a week, but now that she’s travelling for conventions she’s only doing the classes once a week during the year OR you could have signed your child up for a summer camp and stayed in Omaha for a visit!
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