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Ten Digital Education Resources from the National Gallery of Art

The National Gallery of Art offers learning resources and programs for audiences of all ages. To support parents and their children, teachers, students, and caregivers alike, our educators created this selection of activities, lesson plans, films, and other materials for learning at home.

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1.  Children’s Video Tours

A selection of 50 video tours allows you to take a closer look together and explore paintings, people, places, and surprising scenes from distant lands and times.

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2. An Eye for Art: Focusing on Great Artists and Their Work

This family-oriented art resource introduces children to more than 50 great artists and their work, with corresponding activities that inspire artistic development, focused looking, and creative writing. Download the book to delve into art from different periods grouped around seven themes: Studying Nature, Exploring Places, Examining Portraits, Telling Stories, Observing Everyday Life, Questioning Traditions, and Playing with Space.

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3. Look Together

Make connections with art and with one another by using these conversation starters online. This resource guides you in selecting a work of art, sharing your observations, and making comparisons together.

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4. NGAkids App for iPad

The NGAkids Art Zone app contains eight interactive activities that draw upon works in the Gallery’s collection, with a sketchbook for freehand drawing and a personal exhibition space for saving and displaying art created with the program. The child-friendly interface, easy-to-use tools, and overarching emphasis on discovery, careful looking, and artistic self-expression make this app educational and fun for the whole family. It is suitable for all ages.

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5. Streaming Videos: Stuart Davis: In Full Swing

Narrated by John Lithgow, this 30-minute, closed-captioned documentary surveys the career of the American artist Stuart Davis and includes original footage shot on location in New York and Gloucester, Massachusetts; interviews with scholars and a musician; images of Davis’s paintings; and archival footage and photographs of the artist.

Trained as a realist painter, Stuart Davis (1892–1964) became a pioneering abstract artist after seeing works by Van Gogh, Gauguin, Matisse, Picasso, and other European modernists at the Armory Show in New York in 1913. Davis’s exuberant, colorful compositions echo the dynamism of the American scene and the rhythms of jazz, the artist’s lifelong passion.

Check out our other videos here.

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6. Pre-K and Kindergarten Lessons and Activities

Inspire creativity in your pre-K and kindergarten-aged kids through various hands-on art activities. Download coloring pages of works in the Gallery’s collection for extra fun.

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7. Grades 1 and 2 Lessons and Activities

These popular lessons cover the basic elements of art and other interdisciplinary activities. For instance, the unit on line in the series draws inspiration from Frank Stella’s Jarama II and guides students in making abstract line art.

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8. Grades 3 to 5 Lessons and Activities

These expanded lessons connect art with writing, math, science, and history. For example, in the Two Faces of Paul Gauguin, you can learn more about the life of that artist and how to create a symbolic, collage-style self-portrait inspired by his.

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9. The Art of Romare Bearden (PDF 2.7MB)

Become inspired by the work of this preeminent African American artist. Discover the places where he lived and worked (the rural South, Pittsburgh, Harlem, and the Caribbean) and the themes he explored through his art (including religion, jazz and blues, history, literature, and the realities of black life). Scroll through this book to write poems, make collages, and organize your own exhibition. Find and download other guides here.

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10. Uncovering America

Uncover what it means to be American through art at the Gallery. Discover compelling stories of creativity, struggle, and resilience in this set of resources for K–12 educators featuring works that reflect the richness and diversity of the people, places, and cultures of the United States. Encourage creative, critical, and historical thinking in your students as you examine works of art from the country’s creation to the present day. Eleven thematic modules include Expressing the Individual, People and the Environment, and Activism and Protest.

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