We are so thrilled to review the book Michelangelo for Kids: His Life and Ideas, with 21 Activities from Chicago Review Press by award-winning author Simonetta Carr.
It is written for kids ages 9 and up. My kids are 6, 9, and 10.
My 6-year-old son is obsessed with “his book” and I often come upon him looking through it. He likes to point out the pieces of art we’ve seen in our travels.
We’ve recently traveled to Rome and Florence and viewed Michelangelo’s works up close and personal. We love art and history.
This book review is perfect timing for our Renaissance studies.
The book begins with a note to parents, timeline about Michelangelo, and an introduction.
Eight chapters tell the history of Renaissance art and politics with Michelangelo’s biography. The book includes gorgeous full-color images of Michelangelo’s and others’ art with 21 coordinating learning activities – including learning the drawing technique of cross-hatching, poetry, fort-building, geometrical patterns, and even a recipe for garlic bread.
At the end is a glossary, list of important people, and extra resources for further study.
The book is more than an art and artist study. We really dive into the world of Michelangelo with its politics and world events.
We made our own paint from spices and herbs.
We quickly learned what a complex and time-consuming process it is to make paint! So much work for so little paint!
We have so much more respect for the painters now. What a tough job the artists and their assistants had to keep it all going.
We gathered some lovely scented and colorful spices and herbs and mixed them with water and egg yolk. The egg white can be used for varnishing the finished painting.
The kids read the project guide in the book:
I helped them mix the egg yolk, water, and spices to get a good consistency for painting.
We are very impressed by the vivid reds, greens, and blues we have seen in medieval and Renaissance art. They were rare and difficult to create.
The egg white varnish makes the paintings shine and the green and blue are a tiny bit more visible up close.
They drew mountains and earthy scenes once they realized how the colors turned out.
The finished projects!
We especially love the map of the Sistine Chapel ceiling in the book, showing each section with its subject.
We also plan to practice our carving skills on potatoes later!
Author Simonetta Carr is uniquely equipped to tell Michelangelo’s story: a former elementary school teacher turned homeschooler. She also has a background in Italian art. She is also the author of the Christian Biographies for Young Readers series, which includes John Calvin, Augustine of Hippo, and others.
Also, look for our Gandhi for Kids review next month! I really want the whole series!
Get your very own copy of Michelangelo for Kids: His Life and Ideas, with 21 Activities by