The Master and His Apprentices: Art History from a Christian Perspective is a ground-breaking curriculum. Thus, we have been receiving many questions like:
- Do you only cover Christian artists?
- How do you cover secular artwork from a Christian perspective?
- What do the worksheets look like?
To answer these questions we are highlighting a number 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 the artwork. This section not only highlights the changes in art and the artist’s station but also, depending on the period, covers political, social, economic, religious, geographical, scientific or philosophical connections. Furthermore, this is 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 1400s.
Part 2 – Timelines
Following each chapter introduction is a 2-page timeline paralleling the art from the period with Christian/biblical events, general world events and art from other periods. Consequently, 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.
Part 3 – Individual Works/Artists
Building on the groundwork laid in the introduction, and the further context provided in the timeline, the individual sections each highlight a specific style, work or artist. Depending on the topic, the historical information or artistic descriptions are presented in a similar manner to standard art history textbooks. However, this is done in a family-friendly way without nudity or other objectionable material. Moreover, additional points or comparisons draw attention to the biblical timeline and/or Christian principles by offering an alternative Christian worldview to the traditional humanist perspective.
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 development of the “traditional” versus “revised” chronologies for ancient Egypt in the introduction.
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. This includes worksheets, exams, essay assignments, etc. In most cases, students will read a half 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.” Reading both, you can see how some of the questions correspond with the “Pyramid Development” sample shown above.
Of course, there is a lot more to the curriculum than these few samples can show. However, this should provide you with 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 your family and/or school!
Ready to begin discovering art history from a Christian perspective?
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