Picture Study for Early American History – Module 3


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A Picture Study Resource for Early American History:
Thomas Cole

This resource is the third module in our Picture Study for Early American History Series. It can be used with a study of American history from colonial times to the mid-1800’s. If you use all three modules, it can accompany a year of study.

Type of Resource: Individual Resource
Target Grades: 3rd-12th
Length of Study: Flexible Use & Scheduling

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Picture study allows children to become acquainted with famous artists and art techniques. Charlotte Mason encouraged picture study, and required her students to participate each year so that they might become familiar with the beautiful contributions artists have made to our world. Picture study introduces children to famous artworks and famous artists in much the same way as literature study helps them make acquaintance with the world’s classic titles and their authors. It also gives our children a treasure trove of images filled with beauty and meaning so different from today’s onslaught of media images.

Children also really benefit from picture study by increasing their powers of observation, sharpening their awareness of beauty, and developing their ability to evaluate works of art. Most importantly, they will be gently brought into the world of art, where they can connect with artists and attempt to understand what the artist wanted them to feel or experience.

In this resource, students will discover Thomas Cole, an early American artist who painted landscapes. He helped to found the Hudson River School, an art movement in America that focused on producing realistic landscapes filled with detail. Thomas Cole produced lovely landscapes of his native New York State, and especially enjoyed painting the Catskill Mountains near his home. His paintings helped immortalize American places before they were settled.

We have given instructions for encouraging your student to appreciate and experience the pieces we’ve reproduced in this resource, and specific questions and helps that allow you to elicit your student’s experiences and impressions without imposing your own too much into the process. The assignments give background information on the artist, painting techniques, or the individual work, while other assignments offer exploratory questions, oral narration, timeline information, and opportunities to create their own artwork.

What Do I Need to Add to Fully Use This Resource?

  • No other resource is required to use with this resource, though it is an excellent supplement to an early American history program.

Other Modules That May Interest You!

  • Picture Study for Early American History – Module 1
  • Picture Study for Early American History – Module 2