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Sites to See:
Fine Arts

General Fine Arts sites offer resources and information about everything from sculpture, music, art, drawing, crafts, origami, graphic design and digital art, performing arts and architecture to creative ways of recycling items to create art. Included: Galleries of famous works, curriculum resources and lesson plans, games and fun ways to experience art.

Many parents and teachers want to help their children develop an interest in, and appreciation for, the arts. Unfortunately, not everyone lives in close proximity to a museum or theater. The Internet, however, hosts a variety of fine arts sites that can bring the arts right into any home or classroom. Many of those sites offer a forum for displaying works of art; others contain educational resources that can be used to expand students' knowledge of art. Whether you are a student, teacher, art enthusiast, or an interested observer, these sites are sure to enhance your art experience.

Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden
The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden is the Smithsonian's museum of modern and contemporary art. The online collections focus on the art of the past 25 years and feature more than 4,000 records. Students can visit Art Interactive to learn how artists have used different methods and materials to convey their ideas, or they can try their hand at making their own art online in Create a Sculpture.

The Kennedy Center's ARTSEDGE provides teachers with quality resources and interactive opportunities for "teaching in, through, and about the arts". The Teaching Materials include carefully reviewed and selected, standards based curriculum units, lesson plans, activities, and other ideas for integrating the arts across the curriculum. Resources are arranged by curriculum area and also can be browsed alphabetically or by grade level.

Oriland explores the ancient art of Origami from the most basic to the most complex, including information on how the art helps build motor skills and develop creative and intellectual abilities. The Learning Center contains animations for learning origami basics, along with ten lessons for practicing the folds and tips for folders. Included is a studio of diagrams for folding everything from animals to plants to heroes.

A Lifetime of Color
A Lifetime of Color is an art education site that includes ArtEdventure games, lessons on art and art history, plus teachers' guides and lesson plans. The games are fun and entertaining, and will help students learn about art history and color theory. You'll also find a long list of art lessons, lesson plans, and guides for teaching art in the classroom. The site's learning opportunities vary in complexity, making it useful for all grade levels.

Draw and Color with Uncle Fred
From Fred Laswell, the artist/writer of the Barney Google and Snuffy Smith cartoons, comes this fun and instructive art site for children in grades 1-5. At this site, visitors need just a pencil and paper to follow the simple, step-by-step directions for drawing a series of cartoon characters. The drawing lessons are great to combine with a writing activity that allows students to create stories about their pictures.


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Article by Linda Starr
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