Homeschooling a gifted child is like holding onto a runaway freight train. You spend so much time in your desperate attempt to hold on and keep up that finding enough stimulating and intriguing material is sometimes difficult. During the decision to homeschool my own gifted child, I spent months just finding websites to use. Gifted children get bored easily, so they need a constant supply of the fresh and interesting. In this list, I have compiled my top picks for arts education websites. So sit back and relax, the hard part has been done.
10. The Crayola website
To access the lesson plans click on the educators button located on the home page. There are hundreds of lesson plans encompassing grade levels K-12. Some of the lesson plans may not quite seem challenging enough, but there are plenty that are. Another plus, is that there are a number of lessons that incorporate art and another subject in one lesson. This is a great way to knock out two lessons and it adds extra stimulation. The plans involve art history, art techniques, art theory, and specific artist studies. On a scale of one to ten, I give it an 8.
9. Inside Art
This is a great interactive role playing website that teaches style and technique through the art of Van Gogh. It is a role playing game in which the student is trapped inside one of Van Gogh’s paintings and must work their way out. It is very fun and engaging. There is a good amount of challenge to the student, however, the site is limited. There are few pieces of artwork and while the gifted child would thoroughly enjoy this site would not be something that would be used more than a few times. However, it is excellent in the way that it engages the students brain and teaches the concepts of style and techniqe. On a a scale of 1 to 10, I give it an 8.
8. Art Tales: Telling Stories with Wildlife Art
This is another role play website in which students learn to use artwork to tell a story. This is a very good website to teach a single concept, however, it is short lived. Gifted students will not stay here long, but will get a good bit of value from it. One nice thing is that when the student finishes this, there are links to others similar that they can jump to themselves. On a scale of 1-10 I give it an 8.
This is a very good art history website. The best thing about this site is the comprehensive art history time line with dates and other moments in history that are corresponding. It also features architectural drawing lessons, as well as technique demonstrations and comprehensive artist studies. This is a good starting website for the child that is truly serious about art. It is somewhat limited in the amount of lessons that it features, but there are quite a few and they are top quality. On a scale of 1-10, I give it an 8.
6. Architect Studio 3D
This is a great website for the student interested in architecture. It is a one track website, being involved only with architecture, however. It is very comprehensive in this area with the history of architecture and Frank Lloyd Wright. When the student’s designs are complete they can be displayed in the design gallery and even receive critiques. On a scale of 1-10, I give it a 9.
5. A Brush with Wildlife: Create a Composition with Carl Rungius
Wow, private lessons in composition from one of the nation’s top wildlife artists. The best part is they don’t cost you anything! Mr. Rungius teaches the principles behind creating a composition. There is video instruction involved. Students create a composition online and then they are able to submit their work for a critique from the gallery. On a scale of 1-10, I give this site a 9.
This is a great site for all those artists walking outside the box. These are lesson plans truly take a different and challenging approach to art. They are easy to follow and incorporate many interests, including electricity, magnetism and more. This is truly an innovative site with a new approach to art instruction. I think any gifted child would find these right up their alley. On a scale of 1-10, I give this site a 10.
3. The Artist’s Toolkit
This is a very comprehensive site in teaching the elements and principles of visual art. There are videos of artists at work and explaining what they are doing. It also features a glossary of techniques for the artist looking for something specific. Explanations are complete and very well explained. This is a site that every visual artist could use to improve their work. On a scale of 1-10, I give this site a 10
2. Smithsonian Education
To access the lesson plans click the educators button. This site contains several art courses for the serious and not so serious artists. Lessons include, art history, art technique, art and culture, design, and much more. Months could be spent on this website alone. This website also contains lesson plans for other subjects as well. Truly a site that deserves to be bookmarked. What is also great is that you can use this site for all grade levels and artistic level. On a scale of 1-10, definitely a 10.
These are comprehensive art lessons in all areas of the fine arts. Then as an added bonus there are art lessons to teach other subjects. I have used many lessons off of this site and they are great. This one site alone has several hundred lessons for just about every school subject. This site also encompasses every grade level. Artsedge is definitely my top pick. On a scale of 1-10, definitely a 10.
Homeschooling gifted children is a very large challenge. They get bored easily, as well as, accomplishing tasks and mastering concepts quickly. Your challenge as their homeschooling mom is to keep the challenge going. These websites offer enough variety and challenge to help you in your journey and keep your gifted child roaring ahead. Hang On, it’s a bumpy ride!