While homeschooling my kids, we studied about the painter, Mary Cassatt
, and other Impressionist painters. I especially loved how my children could relate to many of her paintings, such as “The Child’s Bath”, “Children Playing on the Beach”, and “Little Girl in a Blue Armchair”. While planning our trip to see some of her paintings at the National Gallery of Art
, West Building, I decided to infuse a bit more fun (and learning!) into it by teaching them how to read a map. We gave each child a clipboard, pencil, and clues to solve that included a map to the missing art!
I didn’t tell them which piece they were looking for at first, but just to “keep their eyes open” for pictures they recognized. I had hoped to have them find “Little Girl in a Blue Armchair”, but it wasn’t on view when we were going. (Here’s a quick way to see if the particular art piece you want to see if currently on view.) I decided to have them look for “The Boating Party” instead, since that piece is on permanent exhibit. They had so much fun finding the room and then gasped with joy as they discovered paintings they recognized. It was so sweet! I recreated this Art Detective Case File for you!
What’s Inside this Free Printable?
It always nice to find free printable resources, but I always like to know what I’m downloading first, so here’s what you’ll be getting…
- A treasure map of the National Gallery of Art, West Building, so they can follow the path right to the room where “The Boating Party” is exhibited.
- Word for word script with suggested actions for looking at and thinking about “The Boating Party” with your kids.
- Two more paintings by Mary Cassatt to look for, with fill-in-the blanks areas.
- An area for your kids to draw any painting they see that they beautiful. We went on a day that wasn’t busy at all, so the kids were able to sit in the room with the painting and draw. This isn’t always possible, so you might need to take a photo of the artwork they love, so they can recreate it later. Don’t forget your colored pencils!