Category Archives: Art Classes

Museum Adventures for Kids in NYC

Art is a story and all children love stories, right?   Modern & contemporary art is usually about color, line, shape, technique, the idea (conceptual art), and society (overproduction of product, commercialism, mass-production, …etc).  To get your children interested in art, you might want to ask them, “What do you think this story is about?” and go from there!

Learning Adventures at the Metropolitan Museum of Art

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Lauren Pohl, founder of Kidz Central Station  got to tag along with Museum Adventures recently on a tour at the Metropolitan Museum of Art for 4-5 year olds. The tour showcased 4 artists tailored to young learners:  Rosenquist, Yves Tinguely, Roy Lichtenstein and Ellsworth Kelly.  During the tour the children learned about:

– advertising, color and everyday objects (Rosenquist)
– discovered lines in everyday objects (Tinguely)
– made lines, dots and patterns (Lichtenstein)
– and made our very own color wheels and color-mixing window collages (Ellsworth Kelly).

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The children and adults both enjoyed learning about the various artists and having the ability to sit down at the MET and actually do art projects together.  The tour guide, Claire was great at pointing out how to be inspired by the art all around them.  She also told the children about the backgrounds of the various artists. Parents were proud to watch their children ask questions, and to see how the art looked through their eyes.

One little girl at the end of the tour even exclaimed, “As soon as we get home I am going to go to my room and draw a picture of my family and use all the colors I saw today!” How cute is that?

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Want to learn more about Museums Adventures or book your own tour? KidzCentralStation.com has lots of options – book here!

Check it out:

5 Reasons Why You Should Try Art Classes for Kids

I recently attempted my first art class – ever. As in, I even cringed going to art class in middle school. But, I actually had an AMAZING time, and created some really cool art work for my son’s bedroom in the process.

It made me think – just because I myself am not a big painter, doesn’t mean I shouldn’t let my son try it and explore – he might really enjoy it!

5 Reasons Why You Should Try Art Classes for Kids

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1. Step Outside the Box. I realized it is always important to step outside your comfort level and try something new. You never know – you might really enjoy it! And in NYC, you can ALWAYS bring a friend along with you so you don’t have to feel alone. So imagine how fun it is for your kids to be running around with all the other kiddies with this weird stuff they call paint all over their hands!

2. It’s Relaxing. I learned that art is great for you to relax.  So it’s great for kids as well – to release stress, anxiety, whatever it may be, and just let go and paint. The next thing you know, you’re focused, chill, and hours have passed! Very therapeutic!

3. It’s Creative! This is a given – but if you’re like me, you don’t think you have a creative bone in your body to save a life. However, if you get the right teacher and class, you will see that EVERYONE can be creative, and you’ll probably learn something about yourself. How amazing is this for our kids? To let them be kids, and paint and create to find themselves. You might be surprised what your child is capable of!

4. Art Can Help Enhance Skills. Art opens up your self-expression, letting you explore things you didn’t know about yourself. This is great for little children who are learning and absorbing everything. It helps polish their social skills, helps them learn to be independent, as well as use creative AND critical thinking.

5. Because it’s Fun! Let the kids be kids! What is more fun that splashing paint, glitter and everything messy you can imagine onto a masterpiece. I know my son can’t do all that in our apartment, so it’s a chance for him to really get dirty and love it! I have also heard that studies say art helps students do better in school overall. And I believe it – why wouldn’t a child who is allowed to be creative and express himself be more interested in learning as well?

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I actually took my classes at The Art Studio NY, and they offer children’s classes as well! (You can read about my full experience here). Here are some other great art class providers you can find on KidzCentralStation.com:

– Let’s Gogh Art NYC

–  the JCC in Manhattan

– Gymboree Art Classes

– The Art Farm in the City

Is Your Child Tapping into Their Creativity? 10 Things Every Parent Needs to Know About Kids and Creativity!

Green leafy vegetables, a good night’s sleep, and… art. Art isn’t just a hobby, it’s a must. Did you know that ART is vital for your child’s health? The benefits of art are scientifically proven. Here are our top 10 reasons why every child needs ART in his/her life.

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1. Children master communication skills through art. Art provides an opportunity to share important feelings that cannot be expressed verbally.

2. Art fosters positive self-esteem by allowing children to express their individuality and uniqueness. Art creates a feeling of accomplishment that children take pride in.

3. As children explore creatively, they experiment and thus discover new assessments and solutions. This “how” and “why” thinking of art builds problem-solving skills along with out-of-the-box thinking skills.

4. Self-expression is an intrinsic human need. Through art, children express their true, authentic selves freely in a healthy, safe and nurturing environment.

5. Art classes are social and engaging. Art gives children an opportunity to build their social skills through creative play, sharing, and enjoying one another’s artwork.

6. Art is a form of relaxation and meditation. Your child is able to relax and relieve stress while having FUN!

7. Creative learning is directly linked to the overall health of children’s brain development.

8. Art enhances focus and memory. Art classes are even linked to higher test scores!

9. Art is directly related to enhanced fine motor skills. Creating specific brushstrokes, cutting small collage papers and a variety of other artistic techniques teach children the art of fine motor skills.

10. Art offers children a lesson in safe, healthy, “unplugged” FUN. With art, children unplug from technology and learn how to plug into the joy of good, wholesome fun.

By: Rebecca Schweiger, Founder of The Art Studio NY & Internationally Renowned Artist. The Art Studio NY offers children’s art summer camps and inspiring children’s art classes all year round. Click here to see their classes and camps listed on Kidz Central Station.

 

Tips to Choosing Kids’ Classes

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You’re at the park pushing your baby on the swing. The mom next to you with a baby who looks similar in age smiles. You smile back. She asks your child’s age. She mentions her son is just a few weeks older than your daughter. A familiar conversation ensues in which you bounce back and forth between bottles, naps, separation anxiety – all of the usual suspects. Then the question pops up that never fails: “What classes is she enrolled in?”

When we were in our teens it was “Where do you go to school?”, our 20’s was “What bar did you go to last night?” and for parents it is “Where does your baby take classes?” or “Where does your child go to preschool?”. As a maternity consultant, I get asked this question a lot. People want advice on the best facilities. Some moms believe classes are the gateway to Harvard. Others choose to opt out of them all together and find free, fun city activities. I see both sides. As a working mom away from her children eight hours a day, I wanted them to have a consistent routine of activity. Although I felt classes were important, I aimed for quality over quantity.

Classes are a great way to not only provide social interaction for your child, but for you as well! Being home with a baby/toddler all day can be isolating. Classes provide a structured schedule in the week and get you out of the house. Mommy-and-me classes give you focused one-on-one time with your child without the everyday distractions. In addition, classes foster muscle coordination, music and art appreciation and social development. While I do not feel it is necessary to have your child’s schedule jam-packed with multiple daily activities, I do value providing a few diverse options for older babies and toddlers as well as a preschool or preschool alternative for two & three-year olds. There is a myriad of options for classes across the city. Here are some tips for choosing them:

1. Research the classes in your neighborhood. Use word of mouth first for what your mom friends prefer and then narrow it down by proximity to your home, budget, and schedule.

2. Request a free trial. If you are going to invest over $500 for a semester of classes, make sure you know what you are getting. Try a few out to see what feels right.

3. Choose a class that will not interfere with your child’s nap schedule. For a toddler with two naps, try one in the late morning between the naps. For an older child with one lunchtime nap, aim for morning or late afternoon. For the over-three set, try a preschool program earlier in the day so they are energized.

4. If you are looking for a healthy balance, choosing one gym class and one music class per week is a good start. These build different skills and won’t become too redundant. Some facilities offer longer classes that combine both physical skill-building and art, which is a great way to break it up.

5. Get involved. The best thing about classes is sharing the experience with your baby/child. Play with the instruments, sing the songs, be silly. Before you know it, they will be attending classes or school without you and you will miss it!

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6. Don’t always feel you have to keep up with the Joneses. Your child is not going to be the next Bill Gates because you enrolled them in classes while they were still in the womb. Do what makes the most sense for your family – not just what others tell you to do.

Kidz Central Station is your go-to resource for NYC classes. They make this process a whole lot easier and seamlessly guide you to the perfect class for your child. Here are some other recommendations from a NYC mom of two:

1. NY Kids Club – at 18 months, my son loved their combo class of music, art and gym

NY Kids Club

2. Playtime with Sammie & Tudie – known as “the power couple of the clowning world”, Sammie & Tudie host classes/events all over the city, featuring magic, storytelling, songs, and activity play for ages 1-4 and their prices can’t be beat. Both my children adore them.

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Playtime with Sammie & Tudie

3. Yogi Beans – around 18 months, my son took “Me & My Bean Yoga” at this adorable Upper East Side studio and came home proudly demonstrating downward dog and namaste.

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Yogi Beans

4. The Art Farm in the City – for my son’s first separation program, we chose The Art Farm on the Upper East Side. He thoroughly enjoyed spending two three-hour days there a week with their warm staff, diverse curriculum, and who can turn down playing with farm animals in the city? Their classes and playgroups are excellent as well.

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The Art Farm in the City

Lauren Deneroff is the founder of Wife to Mom Consulting (www.wifetomomconsulting.com), a maternity consulting and baby planning firm in New York City. Wife to Mom Consulting offers services to expectant and new moms such as new parent coaching, registry guidance, nursery design and preparation, baby gear education, and organizational services. Lauren lives in Manhattan with her husband, Joe, and their two children, Brody, 3 & Harper, 1 and is happy to share her consulting and mommy advice on Kidz Buzz!

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Our New Series– Classes with our Kids

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We are excited to kickoff our new series Classes With Our Kids today July 22, 2013 which features different parents writing about their experiences taking classes with their kids. As a new parent I loved knowing that once a week at a set time I would be in a group of other parents of children about the same age as my daughter. It was a nice break as a new parent to be able to connect with other parents and share stories and get advice.

I also loved watching my daughter see new things and people and hear music. Taking classes with her allowed me to see the world though her eyes. It was such fun to see her excitement over bubbles and her ability to eventually say “bubbles” by the end of the semester. As she got older, it was interesting to see her develop skills and interests. She enjoyed art in preschool and we fostered this enjoyment by enrolling her in an art class.  She made friends in her art class with other children who also enjoyed art.

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Kidz Central Station invites parents to share their experiences of taking classes with their kids and any tips they would like to share with other parents.

Please email us at [email protected] if you would like to guest post on this topic.

By Lauren Pohl, the founder of Kidz Central Station a site which helps parents find, compare and enroll in tons of classes, camps and activities in NYC and other areas.  She is the mother of 2 young children.