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Young At Art

Young at Art (YAA) is a non-profit organization celebrating its 32nd year of bringing the magic of art and enrichment to nearly 7,000 students across the South Bay. YAA is based on the belief that art education should promote individual expression by providing the opportunity, the materials and the process from which children can create their own unique conclusions and solutions. The art experience for children should exercise their powers of observation and imagination. It should stimulate their motivation to learn, to make choices, to be flexible and to adapt, to be able to go from an unknown to a known and to make new experiences meaningful to each child’s own way of thinking and creating.

We strive to create a non-threatening environment with no implication of right, wrong, or "real" way to create. Young at Art draws children into their subject matter rather than just telling them about it. Children have the freedom to touch, handle and experiment with art materials and various techniques. They are encouraged to look, to ask questions and to find their own truths.

The philosophy of YAA emphasizes problem solving in a unique way in which the child determines the desired end-result. Our focus is on the process and not on the finished product. The philosophy fosters self-esteem and understanding of our differences.

“I dream my painting and I paint my dream.” - Vincent Van Gogh

Thanks to the Robinson PTSA’s generous support, our students will have the opportunity to create six rich and meaningful art projects this year. During each one-hour session, the students will learn about various artists, the associated art history and will experiment with a variety of media and techniques.

If you have any questions about the Young At Art (YAA) program, please contact your classroom docent (see below) or the YAA coordinating docents - Sarah Elkin ( and Jennifer Goldman (


Project Overview 2016 -2017

For our first project “Modigliani Portraits on Wood” students will learn to draw a portrait in the style of Amedeo Modigliani. Using oil Pastels to draw directly onto Masonite board, smoothing colors with a blending stick. Alternatively, younger artists will use chalk pastels on pastel paper and blend the colors with baby oil.



Pablo Picasso developed and experimented with various styles; one is known as his cubist style or period. Among the multitude of paintings, sculptures, and prints from this period, is an entire series focused on the rooster. In Picasso’s Rooster, Students will be encouraged to learn about and appreciate the expressiveness of richly colored-bold lines, as they use Prismacolor pencils on Brown butcher paper to emulate Picasso as they draw a rooster.


Young painters will learn about the plein air technique called alla prima. Using acrylic paint on canvas paper, they will mix their own palette to create a night scene representing Joshua National Forest.


Following a lesson on the rich history of the Inuit and their traditions, students will learn about image-transfer and the mirror image wonder of relief print-making. Using toned sketch paper, students will draw an arctic bear image and etch it and a water background onto a Styrofoam plate, apply a layer of acrylic paint, and “print” the image onto paper


In Chihuly Cylinders, in lieu of glass, students will emulate this ‘pick-up drawing” technique using charcoal, acrylic paint, and oil pastels to draw their own cylinder on watercolor paper. Students will finish their “study” of a Dale Chihuly Cylinder by adding notes indicating how the glass should be blown.


In this lesson, aptly named Flip Out, young artists will construct a flip book, design their own character, and put it through the motions using their original book as the inspiration for learning the basics of animation.


Robinson Classroom Docents 2016-17

Asano –
Donna Maertz
Harriet Clark
Jessica McGee

Scott –
Helen Spiridellis
Susie Kim

Watson –
Erin DeLine
Darcy Staples

First Grade
Walsh –
Sarah Elkin
Dina Stephens
Danijela Zaric

Yerke –
Dierdre Gurney
Len Mazzocco
Gemma Saul

Masciel –
Rachel Robards
Sam Perkins

Second Grade
Johnson –
Amy Lanza
Jamie Paquin
Cathy Beaupain

Tanita –
Andrea Barker
Erin DeLine
Samantha Moss

Third grade
Wissel –
Helen Spiridellis
Harriet Clark

Whalley –
Courtney Black
Pam Luce

Brown –
Clare Flynn
Stacy Myrose

Fourth Grade
Holz –
Sandra Swigulska
Dierdre Gurney
Jennifer Goldman

Weiss –
Andrea Barker
Geraldine Pepemehmetoglu

Amy McAvin
Dina Stephens

Fifth Grade
Jewett –
Katie David
Talia Fredrick

Montz –
Amy Lanza
Candice Edwards
Caroline Moreaux

Artim –
Jan Lyman-Kenner


Kids love the Young at Art program and always look forward to the lessons.  It is amazing to see kids get inspired by art, and gain confidence in their own abilities by learning there are no mistakes in art – only happy accidents.  They gain exposure to different artists, movements, mediums (painting, collage, sculpture), materials, and techniques.  On top of that, there is much research to support the fact that creating art helps with brain development.  And as if that weren’t enough, by donating your time and energy to Young at Art, you’ll get back much more than you give.

We hope you’ll join us!