Sometimes, especially with younger children, the easiest way to cover something is by reading a book on the subject. The Come Look With Me series by Gladys S. Blizzard is a set of books that makes art appreciation for young children very simple!
I find that while age, experience, and personal taste determine an individual’s answers to questions about art, discussion with others brings depth, new insights, and the pleasure of shared experience. That is the purpose of this book.
Each book in the series has 12 beautiful color prints along with a handful of questions and a touch of background on the opposing page.
The author shares a few tips at the beginning of the books:
Come Look With me can be shared with one child or a small group of children. While the children look at the illustrations, an adult can read the background information silently, then read aloud or paraphrase, using it to stimulate and reinforce discussion. Ask the child to point to a part of the painting while he or she talks about it. In a group, find out if anyone has a different idea or opinion….
Most of the questions in this book are open-ended. There are no trick questions, no true or false answers. I hope they will spark lively discussions and get children more involved in what they see.
When we’ve finished the book, the author encourages us to “go back and look at all the paintings again” and to “keep looking!”
It is easy to incorporate one painting each week. If you wish to expand this simple lesson, you can look at a few other prints by the same artist, or other prints that fit the theme of the book you are using. But for the youngest, it is probably best to simply cuddle up on the couch, look, and enjoy!
We’ve enjoyed several of the books in the series — our favorites are listed below. And yes, we do go back and keep looking….
7 Ideas for Picture Study
Ideas on other things you can do after viewing a print, if you so choose.
Come Look With Me: Enjoying Art with Children by Gladys S. Blizzard
The original containing 12 paintings of children from the 16th to 20th centuries by artists such as Manet, Renoir, Picasso, and others.
Come Look With Me: Exploring Landscape Art with Children by Gladys S. Blizzard
A particular favorite with 12 landscape paintings by Pieter Breugel the Elder, Albert Bierstadt, van Gogh, Rousseau, Georgia O’Keeffe, and others.
Come Look With Me: World of Play by Gladys S. Blizzard
Twelve paintings of children at play by George Catlin, Winslow Homer, and others.
The Come Look With Me Series
There is one other book in the series by Gladys S. Blizzard (Animals in Art). The series has been continued by other authors, although we are not familiar with these books.