All to often we hear about the lack of funding in our school’s art programs because of their lack of educational value. This past week, my children had the wonderful opportunity to take part in the Arts Council of Princeton’s summer camp program. The theme of the week was “Amazon Rainforest”.
A Trip to the Amazon at the Arts Council of Princeton
Living in the area for over twelve years, this was our first time actually inside the Arts Council of Princeton and I was so amazed at the beautiful artwork displayed. Who needs to travel into New York to visit a museum, when we are so blessed to have this wonder right here in our neighborhood?
After picking up the kids after their day at camp, they spent the entire rest of the night giving my husband and I every single fact they could think of about the Amazon. I have to be honest, I was shocked at the excitement that they had over learning about this wonderful place. The animals, the greenery, the people, everything they talked about was full of excitement.
We spent the entire week looking forward to Friday because that was the day all of the kid’s art projects were being sent home. The camp’s description was: “Discover all the critters of the rain forest through papier-mâché, sculpture, drawing, painting and mixed media projects. Campers may also explore the richness of the Amazon River, the majesty of the Andes and the “Lost City” of Machu Picchu!”
I never in a million years expected my children to come home with a box full of art work like they did. Clay pots, papier-mâché jaguars, giant butterflies, tons of scratch art (which brought back memories of my own childhood), lots of painting (which my kids love because they never get to do it in school anymore). I loved seeing the Amazon represented through their eyes in their art work.
The kids thoughts on camp at the Arts Center of Princeton:
Julia (age 5):
I got to do a lot of painting. That is my favorite thing to do. I liked learning about the Amazon and I really want to go back. Everybody’s art work is important. I feel happy when I do art.
Adam (age 7.5):
My favorite part of camp was playing with clay, because you can make anything you want with it. I liked learning about the Amazon by making our projects.
If you live in the Princeton, NJ, area I urge you to take a visit to the Arts Center of Princeton to check out their classes and camps. I was just taking a look through their 2016 Fall Catalog and honestly, maybe I am not too old myself to go back and enjoy something I used to once love so much – art.
Beyond classes, camps and workshops, the Arts Council of Princeton is an award-winning gallery, an intimate concert venue and they host community events such as Princeton’s Halloween Parade, the Day of the Dead celebration, MLK Day and much more. There are classes and camps for all ages and skill sets all year round. Find out more about their offerings here.