I have seen many (many!) art programs in the past couple years, and See The Light really stood out for me for a couple of reasons.
Many programs on the market today revolve around art appreciation. Even I taught a class like this for a couple years in Germany. And I *love* art appreciation and lessons that teach history and style. But lessons like this will only get you so far.
This program is also different from many on the market because it’s not a project based program. It doesn’t walk your child step-by-step through a pre-designed project.
So what does See the Light do?
This is a practical, skills-based program. Instead of each of your children producing and project that looks the same as the one presented on the DVD, your child will be given the skills they need to produce any piece of art they like.
Right now, Bug is working through the first DVD. Immediately, I realized this program is more than just a “sit down and do it” kind of program. See the Light includes lessons that serve as stepping stones for art skills. Your child will learn to do things like see the shapes in the objects they want to draw, and how to visualize the outlines, and how to add detail. One short lesson lends itself to hours of practice.
When I first opened the DVDs, I thought we would work through it pretty quickly, but in practice, we’ve had the program for about a month and have only done the first five lessons. We’ve really taken our time to practice seeing shapes in the things we want to draw, and worked on outlining and drawing with the few tools we have been given so far. I don’t want to rush the kids through the program, and they are so happy to be working on the skills they have learned so far. I think at this rate, this program will last us at least a full school year, if not more.
This to me, is a bit amazing. With DVD-based programs, often Bug will turn it on, watch it all in one sitting, and claim he is done before we ever even started. It’s not like him to really slow down and take his time. With See The Light, the teacher repeatedly reminds students to take their time, to really look at what it is that they want to draw, and be ready to work with their mistakes. For my kids, who tend to rush through everything, the reminder that Art is a process, and it’s important to take your time is extremely valuable.
I also loved that the presentation of the lessons is done in a mature way. It’s not overly silly or simplified. There are four adults in my home right now, and all of us ended up pulling out our pads of paper and pencils to give drawing a go. I feel like most homeschoolers could get a ton out of this program, regardless of if you have an eight-year-old or a fifteen-year-old student.
Art Class is a DVD art series covering the basics, shape & space, value & color, color blending, proportions for composition, texture & form, perspective for landscape, balancing & foreshortening and the portrait. There is TONS of content here, and these 9 DVDs can be used for weekly classes all year long.
When you finish with Art Class, you can move on to Art Projects, which includes more art history, appreciation and projects in the style of famous art. I love that See the Light puts instruction ahead of all of this, so your child will have the experience and information they need to tackle these projects.
A Note on Religious Content
See the Light is a Christian program. Each art lesson ends with a brief sermon from the art teacher, where she ties something from the lesson back into life and the bible. This segment typically lasts just a couple minutes. I always suggest when a program includes religious teachings to preview the lessons or watch with your student to be sure the content is in line with your family’s beliefs. Secular homeschoolers always have the option to skip this portion of the DVD, but the Christian content and lessons are closely intertwined.. Preview a lesson online before making the decision for your family.
Even the baby is getting interested in drawing!
You’ll be hearing more about Art Class from us for a See The Light Shine.while, because Bug is going to stick with it and hopefully get better and better as he learns! Get your own copy at See The Light Shine.