Artist Study: High School Level with Notebook Pages

I use notebooking pages as part of my high school art appreciation course, as a record of my sons’ learning and as a tool to help them gather information and build a better understanding of how artists fit together. Not only does it help them retain information and make their learning more meaningful, it is enjoyable to look back and see how much we have accomplished in the past four years.

How to Use Notebooking Pages for High School Art Appreciation

1. Pick an overall time period or art movement.
2. Pick three or four artists within that art time period or movement.
3. Pick artwork from each artist to study using picture study methods.
4. Research and write a biography for each artist.
5. Research and write about the art period or movement.
6. Write a few paragraphs with your opinion of the artist or art movement.

Everything gets filed in the Timeline Notebook or in the Art Notebook. 

HFAButtonHere are the steps illustrated from our notebooks.
Please note that the plans featured in this post are free for you to download from the Harmony Fine Arts website under the Free Downloads tab at the top (12th Grade Art Appreciation). Of course, you can design your own personalized course using art time periods, art movements, and artists that interest you and your family. Harmony Fine Arts is just one idea…I love simple things and the plans I offer will give you a base to work from if you just don’t have the time to build your own plans.

Art notebook pages - Time Period and Art Movement
Overview of my free Harmony Fine Arts Grade 12 plans

Step 1: We are studying 20th Century history this year so my Grade 12 plans from Harmony Fine Arts are a perfect fit.

Art notebook pages - Artist assignment
Harmony Fine Arts Grade 12 Art Plans – Free download on my website.

Step 2 and 3: Here is an example showing the artists I offer within a specific time period or art movement. My son reads the information in the assigned books, then he researches the artists using online sources. You can see with the handwritten notes that I expected three things as a follow up: summary of expressionism, an example, and a notebook page/biography for Kandinsky.

Art notebook pages - Kandinsky
This is an artist notebook page from one of my Harmony Fine Arts plans.

Step 4: The artist notebook page is used to record artwork viewed as part of his picture study and also some notes in preparation for a more formal written artist biography.

Art notebook pages - Expressionism summary page from their Book of Centuries set

Step 5 and 6: As part of our high school art appreciation, I require a one page summary of the art movement at the end of the four week period. My son records it on a notebook page and then files it in his history timeline notebook. I also require him to write a short opinion piece on notebook page which looks like the one above.

Art notebook pages - Expressionism example blank page from their Book of Centuries Set

Additional follow-up can include a notebook page with an example of artwork from the timeperiod.

Cezanne Self Portrait
Here is one piece from last year…I allow them to pick the subject and medium to use.

Follow-up can also include an art project or making a copy of an artist’s painting.

You may also be interested in reading a few of my older posts on art appreciation:
Great Reproductions
So What Do We Do After Picture Study?
Building on Picture Study

Additional Links About Using Notebook Pages in High School:
History Timeline
How to Write An Essay Using Notebook Pages

Please take advantage of as many of my free downloads from Harmony Fine Arts as you can in your homeschool and then share the love with others by spreading the word with your friends.


If you still haven’t taken advantage of Debra’s Notebooking Pages Treasury, she is running a Winter Sale on her one year membership. When you purchase a membership between now and January 13, 2012, you will also receive 19 free gifts. One of those gifts is one from me! You also get an extra three months of membership to her site, entry in her monthly prize drawing, AND 25% off if you use the code: NOBUSYWORK. 

Just so you know: As an affiliate, if you click the button above I receive a commission. 

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