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Great Painters of the World - Project Pack (Grades 3 - 8) Review by Christine Field

In the Hands of a Child
3271 Kerlikowske Road
Coloma, MI 49038

Have you been scratching your head trying to figure out how to incorporate introducing great art to your children? We have faced this issue time and time again in our home. At a minimum, we would declare an artist of the month and get some postcard reproductions and a big art book from the library for the kids to peruse for the month. Using this project pack--done slowly and thoughtfully--you could similarly introduce your child to some of the world's most famous art.

Project Packs are a great way to learn. They incorporate hands-on projects, writing, research, and review. Complete instructions are provided to assemble the project, resulting in something than can be a portfolio of the child's work, a review tool, or a scrapbook. We have used several of these in our home and have always been delighted!

This particular Project Pack contains 20 activities discussing nearly 20 painters. A brief biography of each painter is given, and a bibliography for further reading is supplied. Next come the activities, all of which are adaptable to various ages of students. Various cards, folds, flip books, envelope books, wheels, pocket reports, slit-tab books, accordion timeline pockets, and more are provided for you to photocopy for your student's use.

This material can be totally adapted to your needs. Younger children will need more guidance, and you may utilize more copy work and picture drawing for them to show what they are learning. Older students can be challenged by using any of the activity topics as a research unit to be done independently. They can expand on the given materials as much as they like in order to customize their learning.

Doing a Project Pack is a great way to learn, and you decide how you want to do it. Some students glue or paste all their special folds and flip books as they go through the study. Others do the work, store it in a plastic baggie, and then assemble the actual pack when all the projects are completed. It's up to you.

I love these materials! Try a Project Pack today with your students. I'm sure you will be impressed and inspired to look at learning in a new light.

Product review by Christine Field, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, December 2009