This new 25+ page Modern Art Packet is currently free to download! This packet starts with an overview of Modern Art – from impressionism, neo-impressionism & post-impressionism through fauvism, cubism… pop art and more! We spent the most time on the impressionist and post-impressionist artists so there are a number of pages on artists such as Renoir, Monet, Degas, Casssatt, Van Gogh, Seurat and others. The Modern Art packet also includes an interactive notebook activity that reviews just under 20 famous modern artists.
- surrealism, and
- pop art.
Our first activity was a general overview of many of these art movements (so that the kids were familiar with the general art terms above). You can print out a version with the pictures on the notebook pages or you can print out the notebook pages and have your students cut and paste the sets of pictures as you briefly touch on each art movement. (You could also do this at the end or your unit to wrap things up).
We touched on artists such Renoir, Monet, Degas, Van Gogh, Seurat, Munch, Picasso, Chagall, O’Keeffe, Dali, Pollock and Warhol (among others!). We read brief stories about each of the artists and at the end of the unit, we did an interactive notebook activity for the kids’ history notebook.
How did we cover Modern Art (aside from just looking at famous paintings?!)
In this unit, we borrowed a lot of books from the library… just look at the photo below!! The series by Mike Venezia is fabulous!! We read them (more or less) in chronological order and/or in the order that the artists knew each other.
We also used 50 Modern Artists You Should Know (to help us figure out which artist was born when) and Splat: The Most Exciting Artists of All Time which has good overviews of some (but not all) of these artists.
These are some of the books by Mike Venezia all part of the Getting to Know the World’s Greatest Artists Series. My kids ♥ loved, loved, loved these books and we all agreed that we learned a TON (and had fun while doing it!). In the stretch leading to our holiday break, this was the kids’ favorite time of day!! 🙂 Hooray for Mike Venezia (the author of this series) for making art history FUN!! These are affiliate links to Amazon of the books that we read. Be sure to check your local library to see if you can find them there!
- Pierre Auguste Renoir
- Claude Monet
- Edgar Degas
- James McNeill Whistler
- Mary Cassatt
- Paul Cezanne
- Vincent Van Gogh
- Paul Gauguin
- Georges Seurat
- Henri Matisse
- Pablo Picasso
- Marc Chagall
- Georgia O’Keeffe
- Salvador Dali
- Jackson Pollock
- Andy Warhol
We learned about Renoir, Monet and Degas first. They were among the first impressionist artists. Of course, impressionism itself got its name from Monet’s painting, Impression Sunrise. But these artists (and others) knew each other in Paris and started trying new painting techniques (often getting together and discussing these new styles and techniques they were trying out).
Then we did Whistler (an American impressionist artist) and Mary Cassatt (who knew and became friends with Degas).
Next we read about Cezanne.
We moved on to Van Gogh and then Gauguin (who joined Van Gogh for a time in Arles, but then left… and Van Gogh famously cut off his own ear. Not too long after that, Van Gogh then committed suicide and Gauguin moved to the South Seas (leaving behind his family and staying there for most of the rest of his life!)
We then moved on to Matisse, Picasso, Chagall and Warhol (and we talked briefly about a few others).
Once we had read through most of these artists, we had to bring this unit to a close. Our last review activity was an interactive notebook activity about the Modern Artists we had talked about.
Modern Art Interactive Notebook Pages
- The names sheet does not get cut up. Use either the plain names sheet or the names with the artistic style on it.
- Cut out the descriptions.
- Cut out the paintings.
- Mix them up and have the students tape the descriptions on top of each name.
- Then place the paintings on top of the description and tape that down.
We did a number of art activities (drawings/paintings) based on the styles of some of these artists. The kids really enjoyed doing that! I think the pictures of those are on my phone. I’ll see if I remember to upload a couple of those!
There is so much more we could have done with this unit, but sometimes in homeschooling you just have to bring units to a close. You’ll see there are area I could definitely have expanded on… and many more pictures and quick review I could have included. Alas, I don’t have time at the moment! Perhaps we will cover Modern Art again some day, but I wanted to share the material I put together as it is. 🙂
The Modern Art Packet is currently free to download! I hope it’s helpful! ~Liesl
Click on the link or picture below to download the Modern Art Packet:
You might be interested in some of our other history packets:
European History Packet 1500-1750 includes the Renaissance & Reformation, Absolute Monarchs, Scientific Revolution and Enlightenment
World Facts Packet 70+ pages Do your kids know the 4 largest countries? Which countries have the most people? The longest river? The famous world landmarks? This packet covers basic world and U.S. facts. Part 2 includes geographic features, landform words, deserts of the world, topographic maps and more!
Civics and Government Unit: 3 branches of government – legistlative, judicial & executive branches, the Presidential Cabinet positions, federal vs state governments, and more!
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