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It's amazing when my 5-year-old comes home talking about the history behind MLK day. When I was in Kindergarten, we learned our color...

Monday, November 12, 2007

An Art History Lesson

I'm fighting the stomach crud this week, and yesterday it was at it's worst. My little one, being as patient as he could, finally started jumping up on the couch to cuddle. This was so sweet and endearing, but his squirming little body was making my stomach hurl.

I tried to explain to him how I felt by pointing out a print we have over our mantle. I said, "Honey see that painting above our fireplace? The one with the swirls in the night sky?"
"Yes."
"Well...that's how mommy's tummy feels and the more you move the more my tummy swirls around. Can you be as gentle as possible when you make any moves?"
"Yes, of course...what is that up there, mom?"

So we got into the history of things...like...
"A long time ago we didn't have all this technology. Before we were born...there weren't camera's to take pictures, so artists did a lot of painting to show the world's beauty around them to others. And that painting up there is called Starry Night, by Vincent van Gogh."

He looked up at me, saying, "I know. And he's from Paris, France! He also painted Apple and Oranges."

Now I don't know about the title of any painting Van Gogh did called Apples & Oranges, but he definitely had his Paris period, where he studied with some great artists. I was blown away that he would know this.

I asked him where he'd heard that, and he replied in a very matter a fact voice, "At school, Mom!"

I know most of you wouldn't think that's so amazing...but I don't know too many four-year-olds that this fact would actually land and stick with. At school, most of his classmates were probably too busy looking at whatever painting they were being told about instead of learning the history of the artist. I'm so glad he's learning so much but wasn't expecting to be schooled by my four-year-old on art history. It was pretty neat.


For more info on Vincent van Gogh and his works - visit this site!
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