The Music in Our Homeschool Podcast with Gena Mayo easy music education tips, strategies, and curriculum resources for homeschooling parents

15: 7 Top Reasons Fine Arts in Your Homeschool is an Absolute Must Plus How To Do It! Part 2

May 27, 2024 Gena Mayo
15: 7 Top Reasons Fine Arts in Your Homeschool is an Absolute Must Plus How To Do It! Part 2
The Music in Our Homeschool Podcast with Gena Mayo easy music education tips, strategies, and curriculum resources for homeschooling parents
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The Music in Our Homeschool Podcast with Gena Mayo easy music education tips, strategies, and curriculum resources for homeschooling parents
15: 7 Top Reasons Fine Arts in Your Homeschool is an Absolute Must Plus How To Do It! Part 2
May 27, 2024
Gena Mayo

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Title: 7 Top Reasons Fine Arts in Your Homeschool is an Absolute Must Plus How To Do It! (E15) Part 2

Welcome back to the Music in Our Homeschool podcast! I’m Gena Mayo, and today we continue our discussion on the importance of fine arts in homeschooling. In part one, we defined what fine arts are and what a fine arts credit entails for homeschool high school students. If you missed that episode, be sure to check it out. In this episode, we dive into the seven top reasons why fine arts are crucial for every homeschool student and how you can seamlessly integrate them into your curriculum.

Episode Highlights:

  • Gena Mayo’s background in homeschooling and music education.
  • Explanation of fine arts and their significance in a well-rounded homeschool curriculum.
  • The seven key reasons why fine arts are essential, including cultural understanding, creativity, mental health, and more.
  • Tips and strategies for incorporating fine arts into your homeschool, regardless of your experience level.
  • Utilizing community and online resources to provide a diverse fine arts education.
  • Practical advice on logging hours, preparing portfolios, and fulfilling high school credit requirements.
  • Answers to frequently asked questions from homeschool parents about fine arts education.

Why You Should Listen:

  • Learn how to provide a comprehensive fine arts education without feeling overwhelmed.
  • Discover creative and cost-effective ways to engage your children in fine arts activities.
  • Get inspired to make fine arts an enjoyable and integral part of your homeschool routine.

Resources Mentioned:

Connect with Us:

Tune in and let’s make fine arts a vibrant and valuable part of your homeschooling journey. Keep the music alive, and see you next week!

See all links and resources mentioned in this episode here: https://musicinourhomeschool.com/fine-arts-in-your-homeschool/

Please follow/subscribe to the podcast and leave a 5-star review and comment if you liked this episode! Find all courses at https://Learn.MusicinOurHomeschool.com and free music lessons here: https://MusicinOurHomeschool.com/FreeMusicLessons

Show Notes Transcript

Click to send Gena a message!

Title: 7 Top Reasons Fine Arts in Your Homeschool is an Absolute Must Plus How To Do It! (E15) Part 2

Welcome back to the Music in Our Homeschool podcast! I’m Gena Mayo, and today we continue our discussion on the importance of fine arts in homeschooling. In part one, we defined what fine arts are and what a fine arts credit entails for homeschool high school students. If you missed that episode, be sure to check it out. In this episode, we dive into the seven top reasons why fine arts are crucial for every homeschool student and how you can seamlessly integrate them into your curriculum.

Episode Highlights:

  • Gena Mayo’s background in homeschooling and music education.
  • Explanation of fine arts and their significance in a well-rounded homeschool curriculum.
  • The seven key reasons why fine arts are essential, including cultural understanding, creativity, mental health, and more.
  • Tips and strategies for incorporating fine arts into your homeschool, regardless of your experience level.
  • Utilizing community and online resources to provide a diverse fine arts education.
  • Practical advice on logging hours, preparing portfolios, and fulfilling high school credit requirements.
  • Answers to frequently asked questions from homeschool parents about fine arts education.

Why You Should Listen:

  • Learn how to provide a comprehensive fine arts education without feeling overwhelmed.
  • Discover creative and cost-effective ways to engage your children in fine arts activities.
  • Get inspired to make fine arts an enjoyable and integral part of your homeschool routine.

Resources Mentioned:

Connect with Us:

Tune in and let’s make fine arts a vibrant and valuable part of your homeschooling journey. Keep the music alive, and see you next week!

See all links and resources mentioned in this episode here: https://musicinourhomeschool.com/fine-arts-in-your-homeschool/

Please follow/subscribe to the podcast and leave a 5-star review and comment if you liked this episode! Find all courses at https://Learn.MusicinOurHomeschool.com and free music lessons here: https://MusicinOurHomeschool.com/FreeMusicLessons

7 Top Reasons Fine Arts in Your Homeschool is an Absolute Must Plus How To Do It! (E15) Part 2 

[00:00:00] Hi everyone. Last week we started talking about the seven top reasons fine arts in your homeschool is an absolute must plus how to do it. And we talked about what fine arts entails and what a fine arts credit is specifically for homeschool high school students. So if you didn't hear part one, you'll want to go back and listen to last week's episode.

But today we are going to start with the seven reasons why every student should study fine arts every year they are homeschooled, and why every homeschooled high schooler should get a fine arts credit on their high school transcript, regardless of what they're planning to do after high school graduation.

And we'll wrap up with how you can include it even if you have no formal training in fine arts yourself. 

Let's head into discussing the seven reasons why every student should study fine arts every year they are homeschooled, and why every homeschooled high schooler should get a fine arts credit on their high school [00:01:00] transcript, regardless of what they're planning to do after high school graduation. Now you might think I'm biased since I am a music teacher and it's in my blood, but I do think that every homeschooled student should study fine arts.

Yes, I know every student is different. They all have different goals for life after high school. Some will be heading to college, others to a vocational school and then to a job, others to the military, others straight to marriage and family life. Some students have special needs, others are highly gifted.

These considerations all make a difference in which electives you teach during your elementary and middle school years and what you choose for a high school course a student will take. Let me encourage you to consider, however, that no matter what your student's goals or giftings are, all high schoolers should get a Fine Arts credit.

And here are the seven reasons why. Number [00:02:00] one. Fine Arts helps your student develop an integrated understanding of people and culture. The fine arts tend to tie together the disciplines of history and culture, so a course in fine arts helps your student develop an integrated understanding of people and culture. If the student is learning some basic music or art history, it's fascinating to see how the arts and culture influence one another during a particular historical period. Furthermore, have you noticed the many references to classical music and composers in books, movies, etc? Studying music history or music appreciation will help your students understand the integrations of these various art forms. 

Number two, fine arts can be really fun and easy both for the homeschool mom and students. I'm not offended at all to think of fine arts class as an easy A type of [00:03:00] class. We don't want our kids to only be doing hard courses all the time. Give your kids and yourself a breath of fresh air with a fine arts course. 

Number three, fine arts gives students a chance to develop and express their creativity.

Number four, fine arts helps students with their mental health. 

Number five, they might discover they have a passion for something they didn't realize before. 

Number six, it could be a way to connect with and serve others in the community. It's something they can do for the rest of their lives and they can even make a little money on the side.

Number seven, colleges want to see uniqueness on the high school transcript. 

So now that I've convinced you that you need to include fine arts in your home school, you might be wondering how?

I can answer that question, too. First, think through the things you're already including and recognize them for [00:04:00] the educational activities they are. Do you explore art museums or art fairs? Do you watch musicals at home as a family? Do you play classical music during lunchtime or when you're in the car?

Do you have your kids memorize poetry? Second, find out what's available in your community. Do you have a local homeschool co op that provides music lessons or group classes? Is there a musical theater organization you can join? Does a public school or private school in your area allow homeschoolers to join their choir, band, orchestra, drama, or art classes?

Third, search out options online. Because of the shutdowns a few years ago, there are more opportunities for online fine arts than ever before. You can find private teachers in every single arts discipline from an acting coach to a drawing teacher to a voice teacher to a French horn teacher. If live over [00:05:00] Zoom private lessons are too expensive, find a premade online course or video course. I have a number of options for all ages from preschool through high school over at Learn. MusicinOurHomeschool.com. 

Fourth, use your own creativity in developing the type of fine arts course you'd like to include in your high school. Maybe you focus a whole year on just one discipline such as learning to sing folk songs and then the next year you might join an art membership and learn to do chalk pastels or to paint.

Then the following year you learn to play the recorder or the guitar. You don't have to be skilled in fine arts because you can find others to help you in this area. I personally love that I don't have to teach every single thing in my home school. And if money is tight, you can barter or trade with another teacher.

For example, I've known families who [00:06:00] traded science or writing instruction or even house cleaning or making meals with a violin or piano teacher so that their kids could take private instrument lessons. And be sure to search out the online class options, too. More are being added all the time.

Lastly, because I've taught on this topic before, I'd like to end with a Q& A session with questions I've been asked and if you have a question that isn't included, be sure to reach out because I'd be happy to answer it for you. 

I was asked, what all can count as fine arts? Is this just making art or is it art appreciation? And another person asked, how do you define different art courses for credits? For example, a drawing course versus artist study. 

Yes, making art and studying art appreciation can both count as fine arts. Maybe your student spent 90 hours on just [00:07:00] learning how to draw and create her drawings. You could call that a drawing class and give her a half credit. If a student worked all year on a variety of creating such as sculpture, sketching, painting, drawing, and printmaking, you could call that an art class and give it a full credit. Or if the student spent a semester studying art appreciation through picture study, you could call that an art appreciation class and give it a half credit. On the other hand, if you have a wide variety of activities, for example, 50 hours of piano lessons, 50 hours of working on a drawing course, 50 hours of artist study, and 20 hours of composer study, then you can add all of those together and call it a Fine Arts class and give it a full credit. 

Next question was, "What advice would you give moms of middle school children that can help prepare [00:08:00] them better for high school years as we implement living books as part of their education, as opposed to a set curriculum?"

I would encourage you to include composer study, picture or artist study, and poetry reading from the very beginning elementary years. Read living book biographies of the great composers, artists, and poets. You can see my best composers to study list that I'll link to below. And that can give you some ideas of where to start.

Next question. "I need a fine arts for logical thinkers. My boys are anti anything artsy or musical or drama-ish, so I need to make it not look so fluffy. Music is math type things." Well, here's one idea. I wrote an intro to Shakespeare class for my homeschool co op called 10 Weeks of Shakespeare, an introductory course for 7th through 12th grades that includes a super fun book that is actually a [00:09:00] script called William Shakespeare's Star Wars.

The description of the book says, experience the Star Wars saga reimagined as an Elizabethan drama, penned by William Shakespeare himself, complete with authentic meter and verse and theatrical monologues and dialogue by everyone from Darth Vader to R2 D2. My students, none of whom were really excited about studying Shakespeare, had a lot of fun with this class, where we acted out a scene together and watched an online performance of A Midsummer Night's Dream.

Another idea is to look at the computer-driven fine arts ideas that I listed in last week's episode, such as video and audio production and editing, animation, and 3D design. One of my sons who is now working as a mechanical engineer really enjoyed working on graphic design and photography when he was in high school. Hopefully your boys will [00:10:00] find something on that list that excites them. 

Next question was, "Should we be considering adding college-level fine arts courses for those who want to go into fine arts?" Yes, absolutely. If your student wants to pursue a degree in college, no matter what it is, start a class during high school that will complement that course study.

For example, take an advanced or an AP art history class in high school if the student wants to go to art school. Or take an advanced or AP music theory course if they want to be a music major in college. You can find online versions of these classes. I actually have an advanced music theory course that's based on the AP music theory or college freshman-level music theory course. It's inside my premium tier of the Music in Our Home School Plus membership. 

Another option is to take the class at a community college so that your child is actually [00:11:00] getting college credit for it. If they want to be a theater major. , please find places for them to perform in plays and musicals while they are in high school.

Question about portfolio prep. How to go about finding help in that area as they prepare for interviews and portfolio reviews, assuming they want to pursue a fine arts degree. For those who aren't aware of what a portfolio is, let me start there. It's basically a sampling of your work. So an artist might have a portfolio that contains some paintings, drawings, and sketches.

A musician or actor might have a digital portfolio that contains video and audio recordings of their performances. I would first contact the colleges or the art schools that you're interested in going to and get their specific advice because every school happens to be a little different. Also ask students and their moms who have recently [00:12:00] started at those schools what they did and what they felt worked well for them or what they would have done differently. Sometimes you could find Facebook groups for the parents of students at these different schools. 

"How do I, or can I count classes I am paying for outside of the home in theater arts? I have a son taking pretty challenging acting classes as well as performing via his acting conservatory." 

My advice is to log every single hour. You might have multiple classes that you could count. For example, many of my high schoolers have participated in our local musical theater organization. They take a class every week during the school year and do as many as three full scale musicals a year. I've been able to count this work as theater arts, which is a specific fine arts elective credit and dance, which I've used as a physical education credit because there were enough hours involved that they [00:13:00] didn't overlap. In other words, I didn't count the same work for both the fine arts and the P. E. credits. Depending on how much time your son works on his classes and practicing, you might have enough hours to count two full credits a year.

Here's the next question. "I'm getting ready to put my upcoming 9th graders high school curriculum together, and this is a hard area for me because my daughter has zero interest in anything from what I researched is even considered fine arts. I'm at a loss. I feel overwhelmed with this whole high school phase. What do I even do?"

Sometimes we, as the homeschool teacher, have to make our kids do something they don't particularly want to do. Did my daughter with dyslexia, who aspired to be a nail tech, want to take algebra? No. Does my son, who loves all things computer coding, want to read a Shakespeare play? No. Will I still make them do it? Yes. If your state [00:14:00] doesn't require something, you can decide whether to include it or not in your daughter's high school curriculum. However, I would encourage you to make sure her education is fully rounded out. 

Check out the fine arts list that I've included below and see if something sparks her interest. If not, have her pick something anyway. 

The last question is, "I just looked at our state's requirements and fine arts aren't specifically required. However, I'm raising a girl who loves art, especially drawing. She doesn't enjoy learning about art though. She's got a true artist spirit and likes to create under her own inspiration without a lot of rules and suggestions. I've had her use Artistic Pursuits, however, and it's been fine. Other fine arts can get kind of pricey when buying curriculum, equipment, and classes, for example, pottery. Wondering if you have any tips for creating an art rich high school plan without breaking the [00:15:00] bank?" 

Well, this is a hard one. Applied arts, which are the private music lessons, art lessons, as well as supplies for creating art, dancing lessons, and theater lessons all can certainly be pricey because often the student is studying under a master teacher.

There's always a variety though and I would search online for a class that fits your price range. I would also still encourage her to study great artists of the past. It will help her understand her own art better if she understands how others created theirs, and if she pursues art in college, art history will be required, so it would be helpful for her not to be starting from square one at that point. 

In conclusion, let me end today with an encouragement to find something to bring joy to your homeschool. Have fun with fine arts and be sure to ask me if you have any questions. I'm here to help and until next time, keep the music [00:16:00] alive.