I’ve said it before and I’ll keep on saying it: Art is good for your brain! Making art increases creativity, provides a sense of accomplishment, calms the spirit, boosts the “plasticity” in the brain, and increases the ability to focus. Especially for children. Besides that, it’s fun! It’s creative, interesting, challenging, entertaining, sometimes messy, but always productive FUN.
So what are you waiting for?? Crystal Bridges offers a gaggle of artmaking programs, both at the museum and in the Bentonville Community Center, for kids from age 13 all the way down to three-month-old babies. These programs are led at an age-appropriate level by artist-educators, and include looking at and learning about art in Crystal Bridges’ collection as well as getting hands-on with new materials and techniques so kids can make art on their own. All supplies are provided and costs, where applicable, are reasonable: just $10 for single-day programs, and $45 to $60 for three- to four-day programs (six-day homeschool programs are $90). (Museum members receive a 20% discount on all classes! Click here to join up!)
Learn more about offerings for each age group below.
Art for Babies and Toddlers
Can babies enjoy art? YES! Even the littlest ones love color, shapes, and pictures, and are natural art lovers. For babies ages three months to two years, Crystal Bridges offers CB Babies, a creative play class for infants and their caregivers, at the museum. We also partner with the Bentonville Community Center to offer My Grown-up and Me, a four-session artmaking class for children ages 2 to 5 and an adult that takes place at the Community Center. Learn more about baby and toddler programs here. And read a previous blog post from a mom who brought her baby to one here!
Preschoolers learn about shapes and colors, as well as textures and materials, in these three-session classes for 4- to 5-year-olds at the museum. Museum-based sessions include looking at artwork in the permanent galleries, or exploring the temporary exhibition Stuart Davis: In Full Swing, followed by artmaking in the studio, with a focus on drawing, mixed media, or texture. Check out this recent blog post about activities in one of our preschool classes.
At the Bentonville Community Center, the museum is offering three four-session preschool classes that give little ones a chance to mix up some art “ingredients,” such as art and music, shapes and lines, or mixed-media collage to create personal masterpieces. Learn more about preschool programs here.
Elementary- Age Kids: at School and at Home
Crystal Bridges offers after-school art programs for school kids at the Bentonville Community Center, and special artmaking classes just for homeschool kids at both the museum and the center. Four-week after-school classes focus on playful portraits, or on artworks in the temporary exhibition Stuart Davis: In Full Swing. Homeschool Friday Fun programs are three-day offerings focusing on kinetic art or the art of Stuart Davis. There are also longer homeschool programs that introduce students to artists in Crystal Bridges’ permanent collection over six weekly sessions. Learn more about elementary-age classes here.
Studio Squad is a program developed especially for “tweens,” kids ages 11 to 13. The October and November classes will focus on design and printmaking, respectively. These are FREE one-and-a-half-hour programs at the museum. All you have to do is register and show up! Learn more here.
Don’t miss Crystal Bridges’ second annual Tween Night on September 30! Organized by the museum’s High school Teen Council, this free evening features dancing, artmaking and unique gallery experiences especially for kids 11 to 13!
High school students should mark your calendars for the return of Fright at the Museum, a Halloween-themed art and dance party hosted by Crystal Bridges Teen Council on October 21. It’s fun, free, and fantastic! You can read about a previous Fright at the Museum in this blog post. For more information about the 2017 event, click here.
Have questions? Call us at 47-418-5700, or check out our calendar for a full listing of upcoming programs.