Because an in-depth art history curriculum, written from a Christian perspective, is new and not something homeschool moms have seen before, I have been receiving a lot of questions like:
- Do you only cover Christian artists?
- How do you cover secular artwork from a Christian perspective?
- What do the worksheets look like?
In response, I have compiled a summary of sample pages from the textbook and teacher guide. The Master and His Apprentices is based on the belief that God exists, that He created the world as outlined in Scripture, and that His Word is inherently true – even the parts we do not fully comprehend. The curriculum ties the artwork/artists together with a Christian worldview through four parts:
Part 1 – Chapter Introductions
The chapter introductions are vital as they provide context for all of the artwork discussed in the chapter. Now, obviously, this section highlights the changes in art and the artist’s station, but also, depending on the period, covers additional topics such as changes in political, social, economic, religious, geographical, scientific, philosophical, or religious spheres. This is also where the biblical timeline or major events in Christianity are discussed and how these impacted the art of the time. (A list of periods covered can be found here.)
The sample below is an example from the second half of the introduction for “Chapter 14: Early Italian Renaissance,” which discusses the rise in humanistic thinking and religious errors in art during the 1400’s.
Part 2 – Timelines
Following each chapter introduction is a 2-page timeline paralleling the art from the period (located in the center band), with Christian/Biblical events (located in the bottom band), and general world events and art from other periods (located in the top band.) With this approach, students can quickly identify the key events, people, inventions, etc. surrounding the creation of the works discussed in the chapter and how they relate to the Bible and/or Christian history.
The sample below is from the first half of the timeline for “Chapter 8: Ancient Rome.” [In the appendix there is a complete timeline which combines information from all of the individual introduction timelines.]
Part 3 – Individual Works/Artists
Building on the groundwork laid in the introduction, and the further context provided in the timeline, the individual sections (over 100) each highlight a specific style, work or artist. In some cases, the historical information or artistic descriptions are presented just like they are in many secular art history books, but in a family-friendly manner without nudity, etc. In other cases, additional points or comparisons draw attention to the biblical timeline and/or Christian principles by offering an alternative Christian worldview.
The sample below shows the second half of “Pyramid Development” from “Chapter 4: Ancient Egypt” – an example of how a specific work is described and then further tied into the biblical timeline based on an earlier introduction to the “traditional” versus “revised” chronologies for ancient Egypt.
Part 4 – Worksheets from the Teacher Guide
The teacher guide outlines how parents and classroom teachers can use the material to create a full-credit course and includes worksheets, exams, essay assignments, etc. In most cases, students will read a half a chapter per week and then complete a worksheet, either written or orally.
The sample below shows the first half of the worksheet for Week 6 which covers pages 64-79 of “Chapter 4: Ancient Egypt.” This corresponds with the “Pyramid Development” sample shown above, and you can see how questions 4 and 5 are based completely on the above sample and questions 3 and 6 are partially based on the above section (with the additional required information found elsewhere in the chapter).
Of course, there is a lot more to the curriculum than these few samples can show, but this should give you a good overview of what to expect. As always, please let us know if you have any questions or check out some of the recent reviews. We are praying that this resource will be a real blessing for you and your family!
Ready to begin discovering art history from a Christian perspective?
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