Hickory – Hickory Museum of Art from its earliest years has encouraged children’s engagement with art, whether through a range of classes throughout the year, through the week-long summer camps, through the annual Paul Whitener student art competitions, through school field trips, through outreach programs in schools, and through support for home schooling. To make it easier for parents and teachers to find all these varied opportunities, the museum is introducing juniorHMA as a category for anything and everything that is engaging and appropriate for children fourteen and younger, whether it is something specifically for that age group or a broader event with a junior component. (Teens and college age programming will continue to be included with the overall offerings.)

“In recent months, our team has been working to integrate all elements of our visitor facing communications” explained Executive Director Jon Carfagno. “We are excited about how the introduction of the juniorHMA logo will call attention to and celebrate the many learning experiences that we offer for young audiences.” So, look for the juniorHMA logo!

Along with one time classes scheduled throughout the year, three series of classes for children are scheduled at regular monthly intervals. These are Pint Size Picassos (for ages 3-5), Stretch and Create (ages 3-6), and the Home School Art Program (for students ages K-8th grade). The first home school class was September 13, while the other two series begin in October.

HMA has offered homeschool art classes to students for over 20 years, and continues to welcome homeschool parents and students to experience an art-filled educational year of activities. Students are invited into the museum’s galleries to see and think about original works of art, and then move to studio classrooms to create their own art inspired by what they have seen. Different media (paint, clay etc.) will be used each month for experimentation. Through this process, HMA educators connect the individual student art projects with other subjects such as math, science and literature in meaningful ways that are also fun. Competency goals in art, language arts, and social studies will be met throughout the year following the NC Common Core and Essential Standards.

Home school classes run monthly, beginning in September and ending in May, on the second Thursday of each month.

Pre-registration is required at the latest by the Monday of the class week. Upcoming classes: November 8, and December 13. For more information see www.hickoryart.org/youth-classes/, or call 828-327-8576 ext.207 to register.

Pint Size Picassos meets between 1pm and 2pm on the second and third Wednesdays every month from October through May. This is a class for the young budding artist and their accompanying adult. Paint, glue, and glitter are just a few of the materials kids will experience along with visits into the Museum. Each month focuses on different projects, so sign up for the year or just a month. Monthly price includes accompanying adult and both weeks within the month. Pre-registration required. For more information see hickoryart.org/youth-classes/, or call 828-327-8576 ext.207 to register.

Stretch and Create meets between 1pm and 2pm on the third and fourth Tuesdays every month from October through May. Hickory Museum of Art is partnering with Hillary May from Stretch-n-Grow to offer children the chance to participate in the Stretch-n-Grow fitness program. Students will begin in HMA’s galleries for some fitness fun, and then go to HMA’s classroom for some art making fun. Parents can view art in the galleries while their children burn off some energy. Fitness and art projects will be themed monthly, and a variety of materials will be used for the art projects. For more information see www.hickoryart.org/youth-classes/, or call 828-327-8576 ext.207 to register.

As Ginny Zellmer, HMA’s Education Manager, observes, “Kids attending art classes at HMA not only get the chance to experience a variety of art forms, they get to view original works of art in our galleries.”