Draw Write Now Series

I have children who love to draw and a few who don´t.  Draw Write Now was the first drawing series we purchased, and it has really helped my children´s drawing skills (as well as their writing skills).  (If you head down to the bottom of this article, you will see a few sample from my kids.)

drawwritenowseries

What do I love about the Draw Write Now series?

  • My children can follow the instructions on their own.
  • We are practicing copywork as well as drawing.  (The copywork is manuscript.)
  • There is an amazing variety of drawings in this series:  animals, geography, vehicles, people, and so on.
  • These books have actually encouraged my kids to write their own sentences about different animals than the ones found in the series.
  • My kids are better at drawing because of these books.
  • The drawing and copywork get increasingly difficult as the books progress.
  • The series is also great to have as a tutor at Classical Conversations since we focus on drawing for the first 6 weeks of Fine Arts.
  • We even pull out the stack of drawing books when we have a number of children visiting for a few hours (for small group or just friends over to play).

Now, let me tell you more about the specific books.


Book 1:  It´s definitely the easiest with mostly animals and storybook characters.  The sentences are very simple to copy.

Book 2:  This book includes Christopher Columbus (Cycle 3 history), types of trees and parts of trees (Cycle 1 and 2 science), more animals, and even a simple globe.
Book 3:  This book´s focus includes Native Americans (which could fit in Cycle 1, 2, and 3´s history), Pilgrims (Cycle 3 history), and different biomes in North America (Cycle 2 science, Cycle 3 geography).

Book 4:  Book 4 is full of animals from the Polar regions.  Some of my kids’ favorite animals to draw are in this book.
Book 5:  This one´s packed with U.S. history (the flag, Washington, Statue of Liberty, Alamo, Neil Armstrong, and many more Cycle 3 connections) as well as a lesson on drawing the United States (and showing when regions were added to our country).
Book 6:  Book 6 covers animals and habitats.  This ties in nicely with the biomes at the beginning of Cycle 2´s science.  I like the variety of animals drawn since it gives my kids many more drawing techniques.
Book 7:  This book (and book 8) specifically work through animals of the world.  This one includes creatures from tropical, Northern, and down under forests.

Book 8:  As the last in the Draw Write Now series, this book includes animals from the savannas, grasslands, mountains, and deserts.  (Cycle 2 Science week 1 keeps running through my head as I type this.)  I really like the tips this book includes for drawing the continents as well.

 

Here are a few samples of my children´s work.  Obviously we all aren´t at the same level of drawing.

samples

samples2

(Note:  My children sometimes write Bible verses with the illustrations instead of the book´s copywork.  These books themselves do not have Bible verses in them.)

We bought this series as a Christmas present a few years ago (if bought as a series, it does cost a little less per book).  It has honestly been one of the most used Christmas gifts in our home.  We love the Draw Write Now series.

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Library Find: Art Fraud Detective

art fraud detectiveMy friend over at Classical Conversations at Home shared this book on a post of Christmas gifts for her children.  I was very excited to find Art Fraud Detective: Spot the Difference, Solve the Crime! at our local library.  Since my friend bought it for her children, I knew it would be something we would like, but I honestly didn’t realize how excited my kids would be.

I walked through the door with our latest library holds and held up the Art Fraud Detective.  My children dropped what they were doing and ran to the living room floor to pour over the book.  Almost immediately, one child had grabbed a paper to make the art fraud chart the book recommends.  Another child raced off to find a different art book that contained a painting that they recognized.  The kids sat there, studying and exploring art for over an hour just the first time they looked at the book.

 

What I like about Art Fraud Detective:

  • My children intently studied famous paintings.  (The book has them investigating, trying to find the forgeries.  This leads to a lot of close studying, complete with the magnifying glass that is provided in the book.)
  • The “detective” part of the book got all the children involved – even those not as excited about art.  Who doesn’t love a good challenge?  And finding out who were the art thieves was certainly enough of a challenge to grab their attention.
  • There is a lot to this book.  It wasn’t something they finished in just what sitting.  They really have taken a long time enjoying this book.  We even had to renew it.  I have a feeling we may have to get this one out again another time as well.
  • The answers are in the back.  This also can be a negative if you have a child who gets impatient to figure out an answer, but when we get stuck, I appreciate the answers there.

 

What my children like about it:

  • “You get to study paintings to see if they are fake or real.”
  • “It’s cool to find things, put pieces of the picture together, and get information who the mystery caller is.”
  • “It’s fun to figure out who’s the thief and who should go to jail.”
  • “There are some cool paintings and when you are studying, you have to notice all the details.”
  • “There are so many interesting paintings.”
  • “I like that it comes with a magnifying glass.

 

Really, I’m pretty sure you can’t go wrong with a book that gets your children excited about studying art and has them surrounding the book for hours.  What other great art books should I be looking for?