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Creative Fun for High School Students With ARTistic Pursuits (a Schoolhouse Crew Review)

I admittedly have almost no skill when it comes to art. That's why I've loved art curriculum from ARTistic Pursuits Inc. over the years. We've used several of their books for elementary and for high school, as well as one of the Sculpture Technique books. This time we've had the opportunity to use and review Sculpture Technique Model.

The Sculpture Technique books- which include Model and Construct- are counted as one high school credit. Charles used the Construct book for a review a couple of years ago. This time, Kathryne- my 11th grader- used the Sculpture Technique Model book. She was excited after looking over the projects done in this book. There were several she wanted to try.

ARTistic Pursuits review

ARTistic Pursuits Inc.

ARTistic Pursuits has art curriculum books for children from preschool through high school. Their books are great because they teach art skills as well as introducing kids to great works of art and artists.

I've always liked using this as an art curriculum because the books provide enough detail to teach the student the skill but give flexibility to allow for some creativity. The books for older students are easy for the student to use independently. When I used the elementary book with my younger girls, I did read the lessons for them.

Sculpture Technique Model

The Sculpture Technique books are a little different than the typical ARTistic Pursuits books. While the other books are divided into units and then broken down into specific lessons, the Sculpture Technique books are divided by project. Students will read about using a particular medium. They'll see examples of projects created using that medium. And they'll create their own projects with the medium.

Homeschool art

In the Model book, there are three main units.

  • Creating Mass With Putty involves using putty to create sculptures. Students will learn the concept of mass, see examples of works of art created with putty, and learn techniques for creating forms with different kinds of mass (modeled, static, and dynamic).
  • Creating Scale With Clay involves using clay to create a variety of projects. Students learn the properties of clay and how to use it. They see a clay model at the beginning of the unit. They will create projects using a pinch method, a slab method, and a coil method of modeling clay. They also have opportunities for painting their models.
  • Creating Surface With Fiber involves using wool roving to create several projects. Again, students see a work of art that models the concept of "surface." They work with wet felting to create several designs, and they work with needle felting to create several designs.
If you are using the Model book as a high school credit, there are evaluations at the end of each unit and an answer key in the back. There is also a suggested schedule to use if you are using the curriculum in a classroom setting.

Art Supplies

All of the ARTistic Pursuits books have had a detailed supply list. Sometimes there are supplies that you will have around the house, and some are specialty supplies. I love that the supply lists are available on the site before you purchase. This makes it easy to know what you'll need as you decide on curriculum.

The Model book required quite a few specialty supplies as students are working with three different mediums. Before we received our book, I had checked out the supplies online. 

ARTistic Pursuits provides a link to an online art supply store where you can purchase a complete set of all of the materials needed for your course. At times, I've shopped around to compare prices. This time, because I wasn't familiar with many of the materials, I opted to get the supplies all at once from the ARTistic Pursuits link.

Art curriculum

It was great to not have to hunt for everything. Unfortunately, I found as Kathryne got into the art units, that there were some supplies not included. I had her go through and list out anything not in the set. I'm guessing that it's just that the online store doesn't carry everything. Some were normal household supplies. Some were things we needed from a home improvement store. I wished that the supply page had easily noted which supplies were covered in the set so that I could have gathered them before we began.

Using Sculpture Technique Model

Because we weren't using the book for a classroom, Kathryne decided to read and work by project, instead of following the classroom schedule. She used the book on her own, stopping to ask me if she needed help or an explanation. 

She began with the clay unit and learned how to make clay sculptures by the pinch technique. 

Sculpture techniques

She discovered that she enjoyed the style of using tools to make designs in the clay, so , like any true homeschooler, she veered outside the box and made these clay discs. They are carved with a code alphabet.

Fine arts

She enjoyed the clay unit, but she she was really impressed when she came to wool felting. This was an art that neither she nor I had really seen done before. Her favorite technique was the needle felting.

High school art

Her first needle felting project was a bird. About half way through, she declared it to be a better whale than a bird. I was still impressed.

Fine arts

Her next project with needle felting was supposed to have limbs, so she decided to make Winnie the Pooh. Her sisters were impressed with the needle felting animals, so she made Ashlyne (my middle child who is a pig lover) her own pig in a manger. And then created a swan for Rachel, my youngest.

Homeschool art curriculum

I definitely believe that needle felting was Kathryne's favorite model technique.

Our Thoughts

As always, I love ARTistic Pursuits. The Model book has introduced Kathryne to new art skills and kindled a love of one especially.

As a parent, I like the flexibility of ARTistic Pursuits. If needed it can be a complete, structured high school course that includes evaluations for grading. Or, it can be used more flexibly as we did by a student who is just interested in learning the skills.

My only struggle at all with this particular book was that when I decided to order the supplies as a set, I didn't double check with the list in the book. This meant we were missing supplies, so we kept having to stop and wait until I could find them. We eventually solved the problem by going through and making a master list, checking off what came in our box. It would have just been a little easier if items from the set were marked on the supply page in the book.


I can totally recommend ARTistic Pursuits if you're looking for a great, complete art program that your students can use even if you have little to no skill.


Other Review Crew members used this book and other ARTistic Pursuits books for this review. You can read what they thought by clicking below.


ARTistic Pursuits Inc. Review
You can find ARTistic Pursuits on Facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/ArtisticPursuitsInc


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