Unique Summer Classes for Kids at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia

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Thanks to the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia (AGNS) who sponsored this post so that we can share local resources with local families. We only partner with businesses that we believe bring value and enjoyment to Halifax families. If you'd like to talk about working together, please contact us. As always, all opinions are our own. All images in this post are courtesy of the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia.

The Summer School of the Arts at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia (AGNS) has an exciting new curriculum for kids this year to tap into all facets of their creative side, including producing a play, creating art with light, designing fabrics, making a one-of-a-kind quilt, and even putting on a parade.

With the decline of arts programs in many schools it's more important than ever to provide your child with the opportunity to explore their artistic side. The children at the AGNS Summer School of the Arts will enjoy a summer filled with creativity and exploring, learning new things, being exposed to new experiences, and meeting new friends.

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There are four different art camps for students aged 5-7 and 8-12 so there is something for every interest, and every interest that hasn't been discovered yet! The camps are either material based, like “Clay Class” and “Photo Fun”, or they are themed classes like “Nature Explorers” and “Foodies: Art on the Menu”. Every day has options too - full day or half-day, two choices each morning, two choices each afternoon.Exposing your child to the arts gives them benefits in all areas of life, including academics and athletics, and embraces different learning styles.

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Bess Forrestall is the Assistant Curator of Education at the AGNS. She says that having the space to create art has the power to enhance children's self-esteem as there are no "incorrect" works of art.

"Creative outlets have so many benefits, for children and adults alike," she explains. "We all have different learning styles. Kinetic learning experiences, like hands on art making, can awaken students to new ways of learning and create new strategies for them to find success in their lives outside the studio."

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The AGNS is bringing back some favourites this year, such as Margarita Fainshtein's class called "Light Bright," a new twist on last year's popular "Bright Ideas" class where students experimented with light-based media to create projections, lanterns and light drawings.

They've also come up with some new and exciting classes such as "Theatre and Art" with Sherry Lynn Jollymore, where students will write their own play and then create their own props and costumes for it through textile and paint work; as well as “Pint-Sized Parade,” with Emily Laurence, where students will create their own paper-mache floats and perform a parade.

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"At the Summer School of the Arts, we try to work with students to harness and reaffirm their imagination," Forrestall says. "For example, in the class “Something Special” students will imagine a gift they want to make for someone special in their lives. The artist instructor will then work with each student’s individual vision to create these objects. Students will have their imagination re-affirmed as they see it come to life. Along the way, they will learn some new skills and gain self-confidence."

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The classes are all held at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia at 1723 Hollis Street. Drop off begins at 8:30 am and complimentary child-care is available over lunch breaks and until 5:00 pm. The full schedule and registration information can be found by clicking here. They fill up quickly so be sure to book early!