Paint, draw, sculpt, bead – there are so many great kids art classes in Oakland and East Bay! This is really just a sprinkling of them, but there the ones I’m most interested in, particularly because most offer kids summer camps and birthday parties. I love seeing kids come home so proud of what they’ve made that day!
Art Yowza has week-long summer and day camps for kids. The themed summer camps, which include travel, cartooning, puppets and more, promote fun and creativity and kids get to practice sculpting, painting, building and crafting. In particular I’m intrigued by the Super Silly Wacky theme, where Yowza has done cool things like funny money, deep space aliens and disco dancing potatoes in the past. Guess you’ll have to go to find out. Art Yowza also does after-school classes and birthday parties.
Dancing Paintbrush Studio, Berkeley
Students can really find their medium at Dancing Paintbrush Studio. They get to try out liquid tempera paint, oil pastels, charcoal, colored pencils, watercolors, collage and sculpture materials. Dancing Paintbrush has summer camps for kids ages 5 to 17 and registration is open. This year they’re doing weekly themes like landscape and still life, and animals and imaginary creatures. You’ll have a home gallery by the time it’s over!
Kids will learn everything art at East Bay Art School. The school offers 1.5 hour kids art classes Wednesday, Thursday, Saturdays and Sundays and children get to try out pencil, crayon, watercolor, pen, pastel, and brush while also learning about art history. East Bay Art School also offers summer painting and drawing camps for beginner, intermediate and advanced artists.
Pottery is great for kids who like to make stuff they can use, like bowls, or 3D objects like sculptures. The wet clay classes for children and teens are 1.25 hours long and in that time kids get to work on their own projects while instructors teach the pottery wheel, handbuilding, sculpting, under-glazing (painting), clear glazing and dip glazing. The Mudpies classes for 3 and 4 year-olds looks really fun too. Kids ‘N’ Clay also does Spring Break camps and birthday parties.
Sticky Art Lab knows the meaning of reuse and recycle – their art classes feature projects made out of reusable materials! Kids get to use things like corks, bottle caps, wire, wood and fabrics to make creative, unique pieces to take home. They also have a toddler space just for young ones who want to glue it all together! Family drop-in lab admission is $8 per person and is available Tuesday to Saturday.
MOCHA is a great place for kids to learn advanced arts. At MOCHA’s summer camps they will touch on topics like architecture, book illustration, sculpture and DIY wearable art. At the end of each camp, parents are invited to come check out what the kids have been up to! MOCHA’s summer camp runs from June 24 to August 23, Monday to Friday, with early morning and aftercare options available, which is great for busy working parents!
Send your kids to college! The Young Artist Studio Program (YASP) at California College of the Arts is a great introduction to things like animation, sustainable architecture, cartooning, print making, graphic design and much, much more. Students who have just completed sixth, seventh or eighth grade are eligible for YASPS’s summer programs, which range from 1 to 2 weeks in July and August.
By the end of the summer you will have an exciting home gallery full of all the creative crafts and artworks your child made! Find more summer programs and arts classes on our website.