Fine arts credits are an important part of your student's education and transcript. Some children are fine arts fanatics, while others have passions that lie outside the obvious fine art subjects. Either way, it's possible to put homeschool fine arts credits on the transcript in a way that reflects your unique child!
Before we get started, let me take a moment and address a common question that "non-arty" parents may have: how can I teach or provide art when I'm not good at it?! I address this specific concern in an article at Porch.com. Be assured, you can do it! I'll show you how! [The article also provides numerous general tips from other homeschool experts. I think you'll find all of the information helpful and a great way to ease your fears about homeschooling and your part in preparing your kids.]
Some classes are a blend of two subject areas. If your student is taking a computer graphics class or a video editing class, should you count that as a fine art or technology credit? When your child is really enjoying something artistic in a technological medium, it could count as different subject areas, and deciding which one to use may be a challenge.
Good news! You CAN use those classes for homeschool fine arts credits on your transcript. While some parents use classes like that for a technology credit, others will use it as a way to get art into a techie kid's transcript. Either way is just fine. Remember when we were in high school and we could take photography for art? It's the same sort of thing, only now the cameras and editing processes are digital!
Remember: the fine arts include music, art, theater, and dance. Students can compose music entirely with computer software! Graphics are an art, and video is like theater. You can get an art degree in "Graphic Arts," so I suppose that might be my "go-to" title for that course. For more class titles, look at a community college or university catalog, and see how they name their classes.
In addition to the "arts" category, technology credits are also sometimes used as electives, and other times they are put into the science category. How you categorize the credits depends on which way will make your child look the best to the college of their choice. While these subject areas are appropriate, what matters is that you are including delight directed learning in high school classes.
As you consider your student's homeschool fine arts credits, keep these tips in mind for creating a path that covers the fundamental subjects AND the joy of fine arts too.
1. Cover the Core
Artists, actors, singers, and musicians often have one thing in common. These kids often don't like math and science. As parents then, we need to make sure our children have a broad education that will serve them well in the future. That means covering English, math, science, history, and foreign language.
2. Encourage the Love of Learning
Some kids have trouble with standard English and history textbooks, but if you let them cover core classes with their delight directed learning, it becomes more meaningful to them. Consider a more creative form of English: screen-writing or novel writing, for example. Consider an arts-based, non-textbook history class using movies or Teaching Company Great Courses. Be careful not to teach too many subjects with a video format, so they don't get bored or burned out.
3. Capture Delight
The best part of homeschooling is that we can capture delight directed learning for high school credit. Theater classes, dance, music theory, and many other arts can be "taught" by simply collecting what your child does for fun. Instead of directing learning, the parent will follow behind with a shovel, scooping up the credits they do naturally.
4. Attend College Fairs for Artists
Fine Art schools have their own college fair, so you can visit with many art schools at once to ask your questions. Check out Performing and Visual Arts College Fairs here. These colleges may not provide the scholarships needed to graduate with minimal debt, however. Have your child apply to some Liberal Arts colleges as well, to get additional scholarships. While they may not have the same fine art degrees, they do have other opportunities that can provide career opportunities later.
Some children love engaging in the fine arts, and their credits come easily. For the times that homeschool fine arts credits aren't so straightforward, remember you can look at the student's technical and digital interests to discover the creativity that can be categorized as a homeschool fine art credit.
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