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WordGirl's Word of the Week: Masterpiece

Inspiring kids to make their own masterpieces!
on July 09, 2013
 

Sometimes it’s easy to forget that an animation is a work of art! But, after taking one look at cleverly drawn characters and scenic backgrounds, it becomes obvious that cartoons are the work of many talented artists and animations! produced by the work of fine artists. So, to celebrate the many people that give life to one of our favorite characters, WordGirl, our word of the week is masterpiece (noun, a work done with extraordinary skill).

While your children have been doodling since they were just tots, spend this week introducing them to a new vocabulary word to describe their work. Teach your children about a masterpiece and then help them learn their new vocabulary word with these engaging activities.

Activity 1: Make your own masterpiece. There’s no better way to teach your children about a masterpiece than helping them create one of their own. Check out the Activities and Printables page for ready-to-go artistic activities or create your own. Some of my personal favorites include making stained glass in this activity for younger artists or decorating your own birdbath for older children. If your children are more traditional paint-and-brush artists, make sure to celebrate this word of the week to the fullest and pick up a canvas or easel for your child to paint with. But, above all, make certain to showcase your children’s work by displaying it around the house. 

Activity 2: Read about famous artists. This week is the perfect time not only to teach your child a new vocabulary word, but about famous artists too. Have your children heard of Jackson Pollock or Frida Kahlo? Have they ever seen a painting by Pablo Picasso or Leonardo Da Vinci? You don’t need to travel the world to show your child these great paintings. Instead, you can introduce your child to these masterpieces while also learning about the lives of these amazing artists. If you need suggestions finding artist themed books, check out this book list for help with picking out the perfect title.

Activity 3: Go to a museum. There is no better place to teach your children about a masterpiece than in person. So pack your bags and take a road trip to a local art museum and let them explore a gallery of fine art. Try to spot as many famous paintings as you can. Ask your children which painting is their favorite and have them explain specifically why they chose that painting.

Activity 4: Replicate a famous painting. If you children are still craving more art, try this activity to help teach about masterpieces. Have your children each select a favorite famous masterpiece and encourage them to recreate it. For older artists, make this activity more challenging by encouraging them to recreate a famous masterpiece using a different medium. If they chose Michelangelo’s David, encourage your artists to paint it, rather than make a sculpture. If your children like Georges Seurat’s A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte, have them try recreating this in a shadow box and modeling clay.

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Get the latest advice, tips, and resources on helping your child read at every age and every stage. Each week, find kids' book reviews, ways to extend the reading experience, and tips on how to spark a reader's interests from our expert contributors and editors.

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