How to Teach Homeschool Art (the Charlotte Mason Way)

In this episode of Thinking Love, we are joined by Dallas Nachtigall from Bestowing the Brush to talk about the art of teaching homeschool art. Dallas has thrown herself into researching art instruction in Charlotte Mason’s schools and, as an artist herself, now helps homeschool moms bring art instruction into their homes. We had a great conversation about teaching art Charlotte Mason style and how to keep a positive atmosphere around art in your home (especially if you don’t count yourself as ‘artistic’).

Listen now, or scroll down for show notes!

There are few subjects regarded with more respect and less confidence in our schools than this of ‘Art.’ Of course, we say, children should have their artistic powers cultivated, especially those who have such powers, but how is the question.

Charlotte Mason, Towards a Philosophy of Education

Meet Dallas from Bestowing the Brush

[1:18] Tell us a little about yourself!

[3:25] I love the research-ey side of Charlotte Mason.

Why was art so important in Charlotte Mason’s schools?

[5:14] I’d love to know why you think it’s important for kids, in general, to have lessons in art. I’m especially curious because despite art classes in elementary school and junior high, I never really learned to draw and up until recently thought it was a talent you are born with.

[5:44] Drawing has not been taught in schools for over 100 years.

[6:48] It’s not that we’re teaching kids “art,” it’s that drawing and painting are learned skills that really focus the attention, observation.

[7:27] Drawing is like narration. They are telling you back what they saw, visually.

Brush Drawing

[11:32] What is brush drawing and why is it helpful?

[12:10] Brush drawing is an extremely potent vehicle for learning observation, hand control. But don’t be discouraged if you struggle with it at first.

[13:48] Charlotte Mason was living during the Golden Age of Watercolor.

[16:15] What was the Fesole Club?

[19:18] Drawing trains the head, the hand, and the heart.

Teaching Art to Your Children

[19:59] How do you keep a positive atmosphere around art instruction? Do you ever get pushback from your children?

[20:33] we just think we are perfect, but we are going to make mistakes- just expect it.

[21:33] I keep lots and lots of paper on hand.

[22:11] Practice makes permanent, not perfect.

What to do when Mom isn’t ‘artistic’

[28:36] I would love to hear your words of advice for the mom who maybe feels anxious or incapable of teaching her children how to paint or draw, but who wants her children to have a different experience when it comes to art. 

[29:31] Our kids have an open door to art, and so do you. It didn’t close a long time ago.

Learn more from Dallas

Find out more about Dallas and check out her courses at

Search for Dallas’ podcast in your favorite app (also named Bestowing the Brush!).

On social media, you can follow Dallas on Instagram and Youtube.

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