In the last several years I have learned a few things about art as a homeschool mama. Guess what?
- Art resources do not have to be expensive
- We really can enjoy art frequently
- All our ages can “do” art together
- It’s not hard!
Really! And I will show you how…
Welcome to FHD’s 3rd annual event, Homeschooling for Free and Frugal Series! Click here to begin reading all of the new Homeschooling for Free and Frugal articles. This article is by Tricia Hodges of Hodgepodge
See, a few years ago, my mother (Nana) shared chalk pastels with me and my five children. By sharing her love of chalk pastels, my mother opened up the door to the pure joy of art. Yes, we’d been doing paint with water, colored pencils, and paints. But with chalk pastels we found simple success.
Before then, I struggled with enjoying art in our homeschool. First, I had a hard time with saying yes to art and getting over the mess. Then, I would get discouraged with the huge list of supplies I read was needed. Not only the lengthy list of supplies, but the sheer cost for our family.
But with chalk pastel art, only three things are needed – 1,2,3!!
- A set of chalk pastels the family can share (less than $10)
- Paper (we often pull from the family printer)
- Art Tutorials
*Well, and baby wipes or wet paper towels are handy for clean up. Here’s a video of the Very Few Must Have Supplies for Chalk Pastel Art.
So in addition to my story, I share with you the gift my mother gave us: links to her free art tutorials plus a brand new tutorial perfect for all your ages.
First, the free tutorial! Here’s Nana…
Caterpillar Chalk Art Tutorial
Supplies needed: simple set of chalk pastels, paper, this tutorial
Chalk pastel colors: green, purple, red, yellow, blue, brown
Caterpillar Chalk Art Steps:
1. Turn your paper horizontally and begin by picking up your green pastel and drawing a curving line of circles linked together. This is your basic shape for the caterpillar. The head is larger, draw it with your red pastel, give him some round green and curious eyes, a purple or blue nose and a big smile. How about some purple antennas? (I know, they look like ears!). Then he has to have some little red or brown feet…you can make him have 6-8 feet or a whole caterpillar full of feet!
2. I am going to make my caterpillar with greens and blues so he can hide safely in the grass or on a big leaf. If you just lightly color each round segment or part of the caterpillar, you can take your finger and gently brush in the rest of the color in each circle. I outlined the circles in a deeper blue or green to make him more colorful and vivid.
3. Now there he is, hanging out there in the middle of a big white sheet of paper…poor thing, let’s put him on a big green leaf! You can just draw an oval shaped leaf around the caterpillar and he will be safe from being picked up by a hungry bird. Just a few finishing touches of your choice like a vein in the leaf he is sitting on, and a lot of tiny feet all on the outside of his body.
4. Look at your wonderful painting of the springtime caterpillar! Just think how hungry he is and ready to go eat a snack! Be sure to sign your name on the corner, flip your painting over, and name it and date it. Great work! And, as I always say: You ARE an artist! Now how about a snack for you too!
Now you can make your caterpillar as big as you’d like – it’s your painting! You can also create the food he eats through in the style of Eric Carle’s A Very Hungry Caterpillar, with our free tutorials below:
- Strawberry Chalk Pastel Art Tutorial
- Tomato Chalk Pastel Art Tutorial
- Apple (or Pumpkin) Chalk Pastel Art Tutorial
- Watermelon Chalk Pastel Art Tutorial
Even More Free Homeschool Art for You!
- 100 Free Chalk Pastel Art Tutorials – pin it or bookmark it to use over and over!
- Free Acrylic Paint Art Tutorials
- Even more free video tutorials on our Hodgepodge YouTube channel (be sure to subscribe!)
There are step-by-step lessons on how to use chalk pastels to draw tornadoes, beach scenes, winter fun, trees, hot chocolate, and much more. The chalk pastels are so simple to use, making art easy for kids of all ages. Inexpensive and wildly successful art adventures are easy with this collection. A Simple Start in Chalk Pastels is one that the kids will keep asking you to use again and again—learning at its best!” ~ Amanda Bennett – Unit Studies by Amanda Bennett
“These tutorials have been a real answer to our family for art time. While we’ve found other instructional resources we use as well, this one just gets us down and dirty DOING art…Though my kids sometimes struggle with perfectionistic tendencies (I can’t imagine where that comes from!), they have learned that chalk pastels are a forgiving medium, and they can make mistakes, get messy, and come up with their own individual expression of an art piece.
More Free Caterpillar/Butterfly Resources for You!
- Butterfly Chalk Art Tutorial at Hodgepodge
- Free Butterfly Resource Unit at Free Homeschool Deals
- Hands On Science: Raising Butterflies with Free Study Download by Education Possible
Our readers asked that we compile all our tutorials in one spot. We’ve done that – and you might also be interested in our Art Curriculum for All Ages.
I am all about free, frugal, and a short list of supplies (same goes for recipes for me). How about you?
Homeschooling for over a dozen years now, Tricia faces a daily dose of chaos with five children from preschool to high school. She and her mother are co-authors of art curriculum for all ages and a series of cookbooks at Hodgepodge. She and her husband, Steve, are also owners of The Curriculum Choice and Habits for a Happy Home.
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