What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Art Academy is more than just a video game, it is a fun art tutorial. Following these lessons can genuinely help kids learn about creating art. These are not dumbed-down, oversimplified lessons, though. Everything is thoroughly explained and every technique is demonstrated clearly, but very young kids may find the textual lessons over their heads.
What kids can learn
- making new creations
- combining knowledge
- using and applying technology
- digital creation
Engagement, Approach, Support
What's it about?
In 10 somewhat lengthy lessons (plus a number of quicker mini-lessons), Art Academy can make you a better artist. Starting with the basics of line drawing and moving on to shading, mixing colors, and everything in between, your virtual tutor, Vince (a Leonardo Da Vinci look-alike), not only tells you how to hone your artistic skills, he also demonstrates, stroke for stroke, how to do everything. Once you've got all the various techniques under your belt, you can create art as you wish -- and then save pictures to your gallery, adorned by the frame of your choice.
Is it any good?
What makes Art Academy such a wonderfully helpful tool is the way it not only tells you what to do, but shows you. After Vince explains how to use intersecting lines to create cross-hatch shading, you get to watch -- in close-up -- exactly how his brush or pencil moves to create those intersecting lines. The game might not be able to make you a great artist, but if you truly pay attention and follow these lessons, you can't help but learn a few things along the way. The tools all work wonderfully, and in very realistic manners. You can choose from multiple different brushes and pencils and even choose to hold a pencil at different angles. The amount of paint coming off a brush will decrease until you "re-dip" and start a new stroke. The DS screen makes for a very tiny canvas, but Art Academy doesn't intend for you to work only in this virtual format -- the game actually tells you to take what you've learned and use it in real life.
Explore, discuss, enjoy
Families can talk about the value of art. Why do we need art in the world? In what ways does art make the world a better place? Can you imagine a world without art?
What kind of things do you like to draw and paint? Ask kids their reasoning behind the pictures they make.