WHERE ART STARTS is a program that specializes in preschool children. Too often arts programs begin with kindergarten-age children and focus their attention on K-12 schools. In addition, adults often hold a deep misunderstanding of the capacity of preschool children for art appreciation and production. The reality is that young children, specifically those children between the ages of 2-5, are eager to explore the elements of art -- whether in visual, theater, or musical arts.
Both artist educators and classroom teachers who work with very young children must understand the unique characteristics and potential opportunities that this phase of life offers. What is important - and what so many adults miss - is that we do not have to avoid sophisticated content when we work with preschool children.
This is a strong commitment at WHERE ART STARTS:
We respect young children.
The depth and intentionality that children bring to their works of art is profound, and we adult educators will neither neglect nor gloss over nuances simply because we imagine that preschoolers can’t get it. Instead, we pace the introduction of new ideas, new techniques, and new materials in a way that is compatible with their capabilities. We engage in dialogue — both literally and figuratively — throughout their creative process to genuinely engage with them in mindful art-making. This helps lay the foundation for creativity and personal expression throughout their lives. We firmly believe that early childhood is WHERE ART STARTS.
Through WHERE ART STARTS, we bring accomplished adult artists to preschool classrooms in direct and sustained collaboration with preschool teachers, honoring what is developmentally appropriate for very young artists (ages 2-5).