But As art experts, enthusiasts, and teachers, we understand how important art education is to children. In fact, our founder created Museo Art Academy partially to make up for a lack of proper art education in our local schools. What your children don't learn in class, they can learn from a highly qualified teacher at our art academy in Issaquah.
But if you find yourself frustrated with the quality or lack of art being taught at your child's school, we hear you. Art is important, and every child should have access to it. So in addition to offering weekly classes and events at the studio, we came up with 2 amazing ways to integrate more art into our local public schools.
If your local school doesn't currently utilize these resources, please speak up! Contact your PTA president or Principal. Oftentimes, schools don't take advantage of local resources because they simply don't know about them. You can be an advocate not only for your child's benefit, but for the benefit of all the children at their school. Here's how you can get involved.
Become an Art Docent
Many parents volunteer to become Art Docents at their children's schools. Art Docents teach art classes for free on a very part-time basis using resources given to them by their school. However, many interested parents might not feel qualified to teach art without some basic training. We created the Art Docent Resource Center to provide support and basic art resources to the faithful Art Docents in our area. You can join our mailing list for helpful tips, receive a free Art Elements & Design Principles Guide, and sign up for adult workshops to hone your art skills.
Bring After-School Art Classes to Your School
Did you know that our instructors actually travel to elementary schools in and around the greater Puget Sound area to teach after-school art classes? We have teamed up with local PTSAs to organize programs in many local schools.
Classes occur weekly at the same time and date, right after school. The teacher brings all art supplies to a classroom on-site and a parent volunteer is usually there to provide extra support. Classes usually run for 6-10 weeks and focus on a specific medium (like painting, drawing, or polymer clay). If you think your school would be interested in after-school classes, email us at email@example.com for more information.
We are delighted to know wonderful, supportive parents like you who make art a priority in their children's lives. Check out our website for more fun activities, like upcoming events, Summer Art Camps, or weekly summer classes.
We get it...sometimes it's hard to keep your child engaged throughout a long summer without school to keep them busy. When your regular list of fun activities becomes exhausted, what's a parent to do? Take advantage of long summer days to get your kid involved in art. We've listed some fun activities to do at home. But we also offer regular kids' programming throughout the summer at our art studio in Issaquah. If you'd rather not deal with the planning and clean-up, leave it all to us. Read the summer activities listed below and get going. Happy creating!
Squirt Gun Paintings
There's no better time for a messy outdoor art project than a lazy summer afternoon. Your child who constantly exclaims, "I'm bored!" will be entertained long enough for you to relax with a cool drink and a book.
Set up easels in your yard with watercolor paper attached. Fill multiple squirt guns with liquid watercolor and water. Make sure the watercolors are strong enough that they show up easily on the paper when sprayed. Let the kids go to town making original squirt gun watercolor paintings! They can use different colors, distances from the easel, and spraying techniques to make multiple abstract creations.
When they're done, move the easels out of the way and let the kids clean off in the sprinklers. If you don't have an easel, you can use a cardboard backdrop or pin the paper to a tree.
Sidewalk Chalk Masterpieces
Sidewalk chalk might already be in your arsenal of summer activities. Take it to the next level by challenging your older kids to recreate their favorite masterpiece in chalk form. Have each of them scour art history books (checked out at the library) or online for a piece of famous art they love. Print out a copy of each child's favorite work, then let them copy their respective pieces on your driveway. This is a creative and fun way to learn about master studies.
Encourage children to bring friends over to create a little gallery of master studies. Have a neighborhood gallery stroll with snacks and drinks to show off their work at the end of the day.
One of the best things about summer is the beautiful weather! Help your kids explore the outdoors in a new way with this fun nature art project. First, lead them on a hunt to find nature objects like leaves, sticks, fallen flower petals, and small stones. Once they've collected a small bag of items, give them paper or cardstock and encourage them to make faces using only the nature items found.
Snap a picture of the face, then have them make as many different faces as possible. Your kids will have fun turning pebbles into eyes, leaves into noses, and flowers into hair. Take the project a step further and print the pictures, then cut out and glue them to popsicle sticks. Your kids will have little puppets that they can use to put on a show.
Summer Art Camps
When your child's artistic curiosity reaches further than you can take them on your own, try signing them up for a summer art camp in your area. Summer art camps are typically week-long day camps that group children of similar ages together to learn about art and create fun projects. Museo Art Academy holds multiple sessions of summer art camps throughout the summer, from June through August. Each session is organized by medium, from painting and drawing, to clay, pottery and mixed media. Learn more about art camps (and register!) here.
Maybe you don't want to commit to a week of art camp, but an evening art event sounds perfect for your child's attention span or your family's schedule. Many art schools offer art events on Friday nights for children and/or families. These events are a great excuse to get out of the house and make some art. Museo Art Academy's Friday Night Events include Pizza & Picasso Night, Manga Night, Masters Night and our new Family Pottery Night. We also have art events that take place during the week for that mid-week art kick. Check out our Summer Workshops to learn more about those.
Each week students can learn about different artists and techniques in a fun and nurturing environment. Friday Night Events are held throughout the year, but summer is a great time to try them out.
If you can tell that your child's love of art has blossomed in the past few months, a weekly art class might be perfect to hone their skills and pique their curiosity. Weekly classes give children a more in-depth understanding of art history and techniques, and allows them to make like-minded friends in their age group.
Museo Art Academy's weekly classes are offered on select weekday evenings and Saturdays throughout the summer (to accommodate Summer Art Camps). Summer classes are our list of Saturday classes here.
If you're new to Museo Art Academy, you might have some questions about the weekly classes we offer throughout the year. If this post doesn't answer your questions, feel free to email firstname.lastname@example.org for personalized help!
We wanted to give you an insider peek into what goes on during weekly classes. We know many parents sit in the lobby during classes and may hear snippets of the teacher's lesson. Other parents get to see their children's work after each class when they come to sign their son or daughter out for the day. But what if you'd like to be a fly on the wall during the whole class? Here's a basic outline of what each class at Museo Art Academy looks like:
Roll Call - Teachers take roll each class to confirm who is present or absent.
Warm-Up - Students often do warm-up drawing exercises on scratch paper to prepare their brains and hands for the upcoming lesson. These warm-ups are a few minutes long.
Lesson Introduction - We try to move on to a new lesson every 3-4 weeks. When a new lesson begins, the instructor introduces the class to a new artist, art movement or concept. This information will be briefly revisited in each subsequent week of the lesson to ensure that students understand and retain the information from one week to the next.
The intro may take up most of class depending on the age of the students. In subsequent classes, the teacher goes over past information to make sure students understand what was taught last week before moving on.
Art Project - Once students are familiar and comfortable with the information, they'll spend the majority of class time creating art in response to a clearly defined objective. During this time, the teacher moves about the room working with students individually and answering questions. Students create rough drafts before moving on to a final project.
Clean-Up - Cleaning up is a big part of being an artist! We teach even our youngest students to clean up after themselves.
Take-Homes - At the end of each 3-4 week project, we photograph and document each student's work. Most projects are given back to students to take home the following week.
It's important to note that each teacher has their own style of teaching, but our curriculum stays the same whether your child takes a Monday Discovering Art class or switches to a Wednesday session, for example. Each lesson is written and approved by our directors using high level teaching and art concepts, and interpreted by qualified instructors in accordance with the national standards for visual arts education.
If you would like to do a one-day trial class* before registering for an ongoing weekly class, we'd love to have you join us! Just let us know the specific desired date drop-in date by writing it in the "comment" box when you register.
*one-day trial classes range from $25-28
If you've ever been to an art museum, looked at a specific piece of art, and thought, "I could make that", you're not alone. In our contemporary art world, many artists seem to have moved past showcasing technical skill in favor of highlighting a concept or idea. This makes viewing popular art made within the past few decades frustrating for lovers of more traditional, technically-savvy art.
After all, once you're used to looking at masterpieces like this...
...it might hurt your brain to see art like this...
What Makes Art Valuable?
But there's a problem with this kind of thinking. When someone says, "I could make that", they show that they only value art for how easy it is to create (aka, technical skill...see bullet point #2 in the list below). And we know that art can hold value for many reasons, including:
What makes art so interesting is the fact that every single person holds a different set of ideals when it comes to what makes art valuable. Which is why a museum would dare to exhibit a sideways urinal and you might think your 5-year-old could do a better job at creating meaningful art.
Let's Look at Duchamp's Fountain
Yes, a lot of people could have come up with the concept to turn a toilet on its side, sign it, and call it art. But they didn't. Marcel Duchamp may not have physically created that toilet with his two hands, but he did think to turn it into art.
The story of Duchamp's Fountain is quite important in the art world. In fact, Fountain is considered to be one of the most influential art works of the 20th century. Duchamp was a fairly well-known artist and board member of the Society of Independent Artists. When the board agreed to allow every single entry into an upcoming salon, Duchamp decided to test the board's ideals and submit Fountain under a fake name, R. Mutt. The board ultimately decided to reject Fountain, and Duchamp resigned from the board in protest of their censorship. Fountain has been a topic of discussion for almost 100 years, helping viewers to question their own ideals about the value of art.
How Do You Value Art?
Do you know what makes art valuable to you? The next time you think "I could make that", run the artwork through the checklist stated above. Maybe a piece of art isn't technically perfect (or even made by the artist in Duchamp and Warhol's cases), but it can cause you to think about social or political issues. Maybe the artist isn't famous, but wow, that painting is beautiful. Maybe you would never hang a specific painting in your living room, but it inspires you to make a change in your life.
You'll find yourself looking longer at artwork you don't find immediately pleasing. The result will be a deeper understanding of and a more personal connection with a wider variety of art.
Sharing our love of art education, one post at a time.