“Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up.” ~Pablo Picasso
All the Hands (Phoenix)
An independent ceramic clay studio with the look and feel of home, and a small gated play area. Guests choose from a wide assortment of bisque items priced from $9, which includes unlimited painting sessions and use of store tools, paints, non-specialty glazes and firings. All the Hands has an Artist-in-Residence and a full schedule of kid-friendly classes. Homeschoolers and clubs are always welcome. Parties and groups of six or more enjoy a 10% discount on all purchases.
Arizona Museum for Youth (Mesa)
The Arizona Museum for Youth is a fine art museum for children. There is a play space for children 4 and under, and usually two different art exhibits. This museum includes art activities that coordinate with each exhibit, and some sort of hands-on activities as well. It’s a wonderful place to educate children about art.
As You Wish (several locations)
Arizona’s original paint-your-own pottery studio provides families with a colorful, comfortable atmosphere in which to create photo frames, mugs, platters, pitchers, ornaments, and other fun pottery objects which you can design, doodle, and decorate – any way you wish! Guests pay for unlimited studio time and their chosen project piece, then return in a few days to pick up their glazed and fired creation. They also offer classes, party packages, and additional gathering options for clubs, scout troops, fundraisers, etc. Locations in Mesa, Ahwatukee, Desert Ridge Mall, Deer Valley, and Tempe Market Place.
Mesa Arts Center (Mesa)
The Mesa Arts Center is an award-winning community resource dedicated to promoting greater knowledge of and participation in the visual and performing arts. The Center provides art classes, live theater, art exhibitions, festivals, concerts, films, lectures, and workshops for the public. They also offer classes for homeschoolers. The art blocks consist of 3 classes that are a mixture of drama, music, dance and visual arts.
Michaels Arts & Crafts Store (several locations)
Art & craft materials, scrapbooking, stickers, science kits, activity sets, holiday items; in-store demos, classes, and kids club on weekends. Several locations; visit their website to find one near you. Pick up an events calendar at the store or view the schedule on their website.
Phippen Art Museum (Prescott)
The Phippen Museum’s permanent collection consists of paintings, etchings, drawings, bronze sculptures, photography, American Indian artifacts and jewelry that date from the late 19th century to the early 21st century. All materials in the collection are created by artists of the American West.
Phoenix Art Museum (Phoenix)
The largest in the Southwest, the museum features about 16,000 art works in its collection of American, European, Asian, Latin American, Contemporary and Western American art. Not to be missed are the Thorne Miniature Rooms of historic interiors and the interactive ArtWorks Gallery for children. Take advantage of the audio guide to create your own tour, visit the Museum Store for unique gifts, and attend art classes, gallery talks and family programs.
Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art (Scottsdale)
SMoCA presents approximately 10–14 exhibitions of contemporary art, architecture and design every year. World-class art brought from around the globe is carefully selected, displayed and interpreted by a team of intelligent and insightful museum professionals. Their annual Homeschool Days program includes a docent-led tour and art project. They also offer free public docent-led tours of the current exhibitions every Thursday at 1:30 pm, free admission every Thursday, free first Sunday outdoor sculpture tours, private group and school tours. Visit their website for details.
Shemer Art Center (Phoenix)
The Shemer Art Center is operated by the City of Phoenix Parks and Recreation Department as a family-oriented art education center and museum. Shemer offers a variety of fine art classes for all ages. Fun and affordable visual art classes are offered year round by practicing artists. Its mission is to provide the community a unique and inviting atmosphere to enjoy, promote and learn about visual art through exhibitions, classes and outreach programs.
Stuffington Bear Factory (Phoenix)
The Stuffington Bear Factory in Phoenix, AZ is one of the few remaining stuffed teddy bear factories in the U.S. It’s located at 2645 E. Washington St. Take their factory tour, and you can even stuff your own teddy bear or southwestern animal. For info, call (602) 225-9513.
Do you know of another good field trip destination not listed here?