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Home School Life Journal ........... painting by Katie Bergenholtz
"Let us strive to make each moment beautiful."
Saint Francis DeSales

Picture Study: Flight Into Egypt; Giotto (1304-1306)


Following the suggestions in Medieval and Renaissance Art, we studied Giotto di Bondone's Flight into Egypt. First my boys have a chance to each look at their own copy of the picture and once they have spent a few minutes looking at it, I ask them if they know what this picture is about. My older students know the story, but my younger ones did not remember, or rather they confused the flight into Egypt, with Moses' flight out of Egypt. I read the portion from their Bible to refresh their memories. I then asked them to turn their pictures over and then, starting with the youngest, I ask them to tell me something they remember from the picture. They each must think of something new, so by the time it gets to the older students, it becomes a bit harder. They have been doing this awhile, so they are getting quite good at noticing the details, and I was quite impressed with this picture study. We turned the pictures over and, following the suggestions in Harmony Art Mom's lesson plans, I had them focus on the colors of the painting. We had talked last time about how Giotto used the brilliant blue, which had not often been used at the time because it was expensive. After listing all the colors, we then talked about any details that we now noticed that we hadn't before. My thirteen-year old came late to Charlotte Mason's methods and picture study, so he was resistant at first, saying things like, "I don't want to do this." but by the end he was contributing wonderful observations that take some thought. He was enticed in by the beauty of the painting.

2 comments:

  1. Reading about da Vinci lately, has made me very anxious to introduce the children to more artwork - I love your approach, of turning the picture over, and listing details - I'm sure we'll be giving that a try!

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  2. I think that is great that you are sharing art history with them! The ideas of the details and the colors are a great idea.

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