Teaching Ideas

Early Learning

For Ages 3-5

Art Discussion

  • If this sculpture were telling us a story, what do you think is happening or about to happen?
  • The artist of this sculpture is Anna Hyatt Huntington. She was a native of Boston, but studied in Paris, and while there, created her first clay statue of Joan of Arc. It was awarded an Honorable Mention by the Academy when she entered it in the Paris Salon of 1910. She studied a stallion from the stables of Magasin du Louvre (a department store in Paris) as her model for the horse. Talk briefly about how the artist was able to show the idea of “action” in a statue.
  • Look closely at the horse—suspenseful gaze, open mouth, flexed muscles. Is this horse relaxed or ready to go?
  • Look at the rider—what about her body suggests she is ready to go?
  • What clues are there that there is about to be a battle?
  • Have the children act out standing at attention versus about to take a step. Can they feel the forward motion in their bodies even though they are frozen?
  • Do you think this horse and rider are feeling brave or scared?
  • This statue is of a famous heroine in France named Joan of Arc. She was just a young girl, but she helped lead the French army to victory in a war against England.
  • Play an excerpt from Romeo and Juliet: Dance of the Knights by Sergey Prokofiev. What sounds do you hear that make you think of a battle about to happen?
  • Can you hear the knights’ battle call played by the snare drums?
  • Can you hear the armies roaring, played by the trumpets, trombones, tubas, and bass drums?

Encouraging Dialogue

For Students K-12

  • If this sculpture were telling us a story, what do you think is happening or about to happen?
  • Talk briefly about how the artist was able to show the idea of “action” in a statue. What clues are there that there is about to be a battle?
  • This statue is of a famous heroine in France named Joan of Arc. She was just a young girl, but she helped lead the French army to victory in a war against England. Do you think Joan of Arc and her horse are feeling brave or scared?
  • The artist, Anna Hyatt Huntington, studied a stallion from the stables of Magasin du Louvre (a department store in Paris) as her model for the horse. Have you ever seen or ridden a horse?