If you enjoy learning about different artists in your homeschool, you will love learning about 8 of our favorite artists! Teaching about artists in your homeschool is a pretty popular thing, especially among Charlotte Mason style homeschoolers. Most of the time during picture study, you will first learn about the artist.
Charlotte Mason Style Picture Study
In the Charlotte Mason Style of homeschooling, picture study is used as a gentle way to introduce fine art to your children and to teach your children about different famous artists.
To introduce your kids to art, begin by showing your kids a picture and having them study the picture for a time. Then turn the picture over so your kids can no longer see it. Ask your kids to describe the picture. When they’re finished, turn the picture back over so they can see how well they did. Then hang the picture in a place where your kids can continue to see and study it for the rest of the week.
How Long to Study Each Artist
At the same time, stay with the same artist for a considerable length of time. This could mean weeks or even a month or more per artist. This will enable the kids to become familiar with each artist and to recognize his style. It’s a gentle way to complete artist studies each week, especially if you begin with your favorite artist.
Famous Artists for Elementary Students
There are so many wonderful artists that you can choose to study, but I have picked some of our personal favorites to highlight. If you use a Charlotte Mason method of homeschooling, you will find that studying artists and their works of art go along great with that style of education. You can also pair artist and picture study up with history studies as well.
Start by introducing your children to some of the best-known artists, especially your favorite. You can study their unique style, consider the colors they use, and look at their favorite ways of creating art.
You’ll find a great list of awesome artists below to help get you started.
Free Unit Studies and Printables on our favorite artists:
There are so many free resources on artists available, and we have sourced them for you by 8 popular artists, from free artist unit studies and biographies to coloring pages and printables. We hope you find our list of free artist resources helpful for your homeschool.
Learn about 8 of our favorite artists:
- John James Audubon
- Leonardo Da Vinci
- Claude Oscar Monet
- Mary Cassatt
- Pablo Picasso
- Norman Rockwell
- Vincent Van Gogh
John James Audubon:
John James Audubon is a favorite among nature lovers. He was an American ornithologist, artist, and naturalist known for his bird drawings and paintings of North American birds.
You can read about the biography of John James Audubon. It’s a detailed biography that covers his entire life.
Learn more about Audubon and his life on the Frontier. You’ll find a wealth of information about his travels in Florida.
Sign up for free printable artist study pages on John James Audubon over
Free Unit Study Printables for The Boy Who Drew Birds – The Boy Who Drew Birds is a delightful story about Audubon’s childhood. It includes a lesson plan on the geography of France, a lesson plan on bird migration, and more. It’s a fun way to study Audubon with your kids.
Audubon Kids Website has games, videos and tons of educational information specifically geared towards kids.
Free Audubon Birds Notebooking Journal – This free notebooking journal includes 28 of the birds that Audubon studied. It’s a great way to encourage your kids to write, draw, and record the facts they’ve learned.
Free John James Audubon Lesson – Download a free lesson plan about John James Audubon to study with your kids. It includes instructions on how to draw birds and will be a lot of fun for you and your kids.
About John James Audubon – learn about Audubon with links to bird activities such as online jigsaw puzzles using Audubon’s drawings, a heart bird paper craft, and a paper mache bird craft.
John James Audubon Quiz – You’ll find both a lesson and a quiz at this site. It’s a great way to challenge your older students and see how well they’re paying attention.
Don’t miss this Birding Notebook – A companion to Audubon Birding Adventures for Kids
Students will learn about 25 birds as well as their habitats, beaks, feathers, and much more. Document your birding activities for your notebook and portfolio and use the journal pages for a bird walk.
Leonardo Da Vinci:
Leonardo Da Vinci is a famous artist and scientist from the Renaissance and Middle Ages time period. He was also a famous scientist who was a pioneer in the medical field and an amazing inventor during the Renaissance.
You can read about the biography of Leonardo da Vinci here. The site shares information about Leonardo da Vinci’s early life, education, as well as his works.
Leonardo da Vinci Printable Biography – Here’s a fun printable biography for students of all ages. You can print it up and read it aloud to younger children or hand it to your older students to read.
Leonardo DaVinci Unit Study with Free Printable Art Cards – These are great free printables to use in your art studies. The art includes the Mona Lisa and The Last Supper among other artworks. Art cards are a great way to teach your children about famous artists.
Leonardo da Vinci online unit study for older students – Learn about Leonardo da Vinci with this online unity study for older students. Your kids will learn about his history and some of his works of art.
Leonardo da Vinci Online Study Guide and art studies – This is a fun downloadable biography of Leonardo da Vinci. If you scroll down, you’ll also find a Mona Lisa coloring page for your children to color.
Leonardo Da Vinci Coloring art pages:
Each page includes a black and white picture of one of Da Vinci’s works of art. Your kids can color the pictures using their own choice of colors. Older children may choose to see if they can match the original colors. It’s a great way to help your children become familiar with these great works of art.
- Lady with an Ermine coloring page
- Mona Lisa coloring page
- The Last Supper
- Leonardo’s Horse Sculpture
- Vitruvian Man
- Leonardo da Vinci Self Portrait
Michelangelo was another famous Italian Renaissance artist. He was a famous sculptor who is well know for his David statue, a painter, poet and architect. He is most well known for his frescoes on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel.
Michelangelo Biography for Kids – You’ll find a complete biolography of Michelangelo here. There’s even a link to a Ted talk on Michelangelo and the Sistine Chapel.
Read Michelangelo’s Biography – You’ll learn about Michelangelo’s early life, his education, some of his sculptures, as well as some of his famous paintings.
Michelangelo Unit Study – with beautiful photos (you may want to preview first!) There’s a wealth of information on some of Michelangelo’s artwork, simple art activities, and a few links to additional resources.
Michelangelo: Sculptor, Painter, Architect and Poet Unit Study – You’ll find a great opportunity to introduce your older students to Michelangelo using this unit study.
The Creation of Adam by Michelangelo Lesson Plan – This is a fun art activity in which you’ll recreate Michelangelo’s work of art “The Creation of Adam”.
Soap Sculpture Lesson for Studying Michelangelo – Learn how Michelangelo created sculptures by using the same technique using bars of soap. It’s a great idea for an art lesson your kids will love.
Colouring the Sistine Chapel free activity with directions and Sistine Chapel coloring pages – Give your kids a taste of what’s it like to paint or color laying on your back by printing this coloring page and taping it to the bottom of a table.
Michelangelo.org has the most beautiful panoramic view of the Sistine Chapel. There are also full galleries of his work with tons of facts, quotes and details on his works and life. (please preview for nudity first)
Recommended Resource – Famous People Notebook: Artists
Famous People Notebook: Artists gives you the tool to introduce artist study in an easy to use and effective format. Each lesson provides background of an artist followed by open-ended questions to encourage critical thinking. Through written narration your child will explore the life and works of such artists as Picasso, Monet, Rockwell, Van Gogh, and more!
Claude Oscar Monet was born in Paris, France in 1840. He was a revolutionary with his painting technique and was the founder of the Impressionist Movement.
Biography of Claude Oscar Monet – Learn about Claude Monet’s life through this interesting biography that discusses major events in his life.
Claude Monet Printable Biography – Read a fun biography about this amazing artist to your children. You can also hand the biography to your older children for them to read to themselves.
Monet’s River Scene Picture Study and Notebooking page – This Claude Monet “River Scene” Notebooking Page includes Monet’s River scene on it. It’s a great resource for you to use as you’re studying Monet.
Claude Monet Worksheet – Introduce your children to Monet with this fun worksheet. Not only will it teach your children about Monet, but it also includes a fun art project. They’ll get the chance to try creating the same scene three times in different lights. It’s a fun art project for young artists.
Claude Monet Artist Notebooking Page – You’ll find a notebooking page with a picture of Claude Monet on it. It’s perfect for younger and older students to use as they write down what they’ve learned about this great artist.
Monet Online Lesson – This online lesson is complete with printable tests, quizzes, wordsearches, and more.
Monet’s Haystacks Art History Lesson for Kids – Your kids will love this art history lesson for kids. They’ll study Monet’s Haystacks, develop critical thinking skills, and complete 2 art projects.
Claude Monet Coloring Pages:
Don’t forget to download these coloring pages for your kids to use as you study Claude Monet. The pages are black and white pictures of some of his artwork.
Mary Cassatt was born in America and traveled to France to train artistically. She was frowned upon as a woman in art school in America, so she moved to France to train with the masters. She helped to bring the impressionist style art work to American and to be enjoyed and loved by Americans.
Mary Cassatt Biography– Learn about Mary Cassatt’s early life, her study of art, and her artistic expression.
Printable Biography – Your kids will love learning about Mary Cassatt with this interesting and printable biography.
Mary Cassatt Wordsearch Worksheet – This printable Mary Cassatt word search will help your kids develop reading skills as they learn about this amazing artist.
Mary Cassatt Unit Study – This unit study includes a short biography, art project ideas, notebooking pages, and more.
Mother’s Day with Mary Cassatt Free Printable Art Interview – Complete a Mother’s Day interview with your children before choosing a scene to paint together. It’s a fun activity for both moms and young children.
Free 120 page pdf of Mary Cassatt’s art collection – Download this free pdf that includes reproductions of some of Mary Cassatt’s work.
Mary Cassatt Most Important Artworks – You’ll find a biography along with photos and a synopsis of each one.
Pablo Picasso was born in Spain in 1881. He was one of the greatest painters of the 20th century and is considered a Modern Era artist. He spent his artistic years creating in Paris, France, with other artist friends.
Pablo Picasso Biography – Learn all about this famous artist of the 20th Century by reading his biography. You’ll learn who he was, his early life, education, and some of his works of art.
Biography for Kids – You’ll find a complete biography of Pablo Picasso that was created for kids. It’s an interesting look at this famous artist.
Pablo Picasso Biography for Kids – this biography explains the different styles and periods that Picasso painted at different times in his life.
I love all these resources:
- Picasso Wordsearch Worksheet – Download this word search for your children to complete.
- Picasso Cubist Paper Bag Puppet – Create a work of art by making a Cubist paper bag puppet. It’s lots of fun for kids of all ages.
- Three Musicians Learn to Watercolor Project – Teach your kids to watercolor using this fun art activity which has kids reproducing a part of Three Musicians.
Cubist Portrait Bust Lesson Plan – Your kids will love this art activity where they produce a Cubist portrait bust by using Styrofoam shapes.
Interactive Online Picasso Lesson Plan for Highschool – This is a great art history lesson on Picasso for older students.
Picasso’s Shapes Preschool Art Project – Use paper cutouts in different shapes and introduce Picasso to your preschooler.
Picasso Blue Lesson Plan Art Project – This is a great idea for art classes. Your kids will learn how the color of a piece of art will change the mood of a drawing.
Norman Rockwell is a well-known American artist of the Modern Era in the 20th Century. He is most known for his paintings and drawings of everyday American life and his covers for The Saturday Evening Post.
Biography of Norman Rockwell – Learn all about Norman Rockwell with this inspiring biography. You’ll learn about his early life, some of his published works, and how he spent the last ten years of his life.
Norman Rockwell Printable Biography – This is a great printable biography for you to read aloud to your children. It’s a great opportunity for you and your children to learn more about this artist’s life.
Norman Rockwell’s Perpetual Motion Notebooking Page – This is a great notebooking page to download and give your kids to record what they’ve learned about this artist. It includes an image of Norman Rockwell’s Perpetual Motion painting.
Norman Rockwell Notebooking Pages – These free printables are great for doing a picture study of any of his paintings.
Norman Rockwell Wordsearch Worksheet – Give your kids a word search on Norman Rockwell. It’s a great way to review everything they’ve learned about this artist.
Norman Rockwell’s The Four Freedoms Lesson Plan – Learn about how Norman Rockwell interpreted FDR’s four freedoms in his artwork. It’s a great lesson plan for art teachers.
Draw a Norman Rockwell Ispired Picture Lesson Plan – This lesson plan is perfect for older students to learn drawing techniques as they draw a Norman Rockwell inspired picture.
The Curriculum Lab from the Norman Rockwell Exhibit has free curriculum lesson plans for different paintings and studies on his collections.
See the complete covers of the Saturday Evening Post broken down by decade.
Explore the world of Norman Rockwell with online digital experiences – it’s a great way to learn about different aspects of Norman Rockwell’s life.
View the entire collections of Norman Rockwell – You can see various collections of Norman Rockwell’s art from the Civil Rights Movement, childhood in the United States, WW2, and more.
Vincent Van Gogh:
Vincent Van Gogh was born on March 30, 1853. He is considered the greatest Dutch painter since Rembrandt. Vincent Van Gogh has a very sad story as he struggled greatly with mental illness and remained poor and unknown his entire life.
Van Gogh Biography – Learn all about Van Gogh’s life from his early childhood, his life as a preacher, to his paintings.
Vincent Van Gogh for Kids Biography – there are many interesting fun facts about Van Gogh, including that he indeed cut off a part of his ear!
Vincent Van Gogh Wordsearch Worksheet – This is a fun worksheet to review various parts of Vincent Van Gogh’s life.
Vincent Van Gogh Slide Player Presentation on Post – Impressionism and Expresssionism (not on PowerPoint) for High School grades.
Informational Text Artist Biography on Vincent Van Gogh – This informational biography is created to introduce elementary kids to Vincent Van Gogh.
Star Bright Starry Night Art Lesson – This is a fun art project that teaches kids different painting techniques using oil or tempera paint. It’s the best way to teach kids about Van Gogh’s Starry Night.
Sunflower Learn to Water Color Project – Your kids will love different watercolor techniques while recreating Sunflower.
The Starry Night Coloring Page – Download and give this coloring page to your children. They can color it with crayons or oil pastels.
Van Gogh Assessment – Warm and Cool Colors – Help your young kids learn about the difference between warm and cool colors with this fun Van Gogh assessment.
Van Gogh Gallery is a complete online reference of information on the life of Vincent Van Gogh and his art work.
Vincent Van Gogh Unit Study
We love the Online Unit Studies from Techie Homeschool Mom. They are a work at your own pace style and they are fun and engaging. You can do them with your children, or they can do them all on their own. Here is one that is all about Vincent Van Gogh.
More Free Art and Art History Resources
These art and art history resources will help you and your family study more artists than the 8 amazing artists we discussed. You’ll be able to assign research projects, look at Impressionist and Modern artists. You’ll even be able to introduce your children to the color wheel.
Famous Artists Notebooking Journal – This is a fun research journal to create with your kids. Your kids will truly learn about art history as they study these great artists.
Famous Artists Cheat Sheets – These cheat sheets will help your kids learn about 45 famous artists. Your kids will learn the name of the artist, their home country, and their art style or their time period.
Elements of Art and Color Wheel Worksheets – Teach your kids about primary colors, the color wheel, and color theory.
Resources About Famous Painters and Sculptors – Here are more resources about more painters and sculptors for you and your kids to study.
Artists Notebooking – This is a research project that will give your kids the chance to dig into the lives of 50 different artists.
Art Study Methods and Ways to Incorporate Art
How to Study Artists + Charlotte Mason Artist Study Download – Here’s a great Charlotte Mason Artist Study to help you get started.
Picture Study Resources and Printables – Here are some fun resources and free printables to help you get started with picture study.
Analyzing Historical Art-American Revolution – Help your kids learn how to analyze historical art by looking at art created during the American Revolution.
10 Ways to Incorporate Art Into Your Homeschool – Art can be hard to add to a busy homeschool week. So here are 10 ways you can start adding art into your homeschool.
Different Periods of Art History
Printables to Teach Kids About the Impressionists – Here are some fun printables to help your kids learn about Impressionism and the different artists.
Printables to Teach Kids About the Post-Impressionists – Have you studied the post-Impressionists artists? The period lasted from 1885 to 1910 and included artists such as Henri Rousseau, Pierre Bonnard, and Georges Seurat.
Printables to Teach Kids About the Expressionists – Teach your children about the Expressionists with this wonderful collection of free printables.
Printables to Teach Kids About Abstract Artists – Here’s a delightful collection of printables to teach your kids about abstract artists like Pablo Picasso.
Printables to Teach Kids About the Surrealists – Learn about Surrealists such as Salvador Dali, Andre Breton, and Joan Miro.
Printables to Teach Kids About Modern Artists – These are great printables to teach your kids about modern and contemporary artists such as Piet Mondrian, Andy Warhol, and Diego Rivera.Top of Form
Sara Dennis is a veteran homeschool mom of six who’s still homeschooling her two youngest kids after the older four have graduated, entered college, and moved on to adult life. She blogs at Classically Homeschooling.