Creative Discoveries Art Camps

Overview

Discover a world of creativity this summer! Young students will have the opportunity to explore various art media such as drawing, painting, collage, and bookmaking, while learning new technical skills each day.

Note: You can choose to attend one or all weeks, as a different instructor and/or new curriculum will be introduced each week! To register, you will need to add each weekly program to your cart before final payment.

Weekly themes for this year’s camp:

  1. Self and identity
  2. Family and relationships
  3. Community and place
  4. Culture and history
  5. Nature and science
Course Objectives (Ages 6-8)

Aligning with FCPS Elementary key concepts for kindergarten, 1st grade, and 2nd grade, this camp explores big ideas of self, family, and community. These may encompass themes like culture, sensory awareness, stories, home, diversity, and other related topics.

  • Explore Art Materials: Experiment with various art supplies, including colored pencils, paints, clay, and more, to become familiar with their properties and potential.
  • Develop Fine Motor Skills: Improve hand-eye coordination and dexterity through drawing, painting, cutting, and molding activities.
  • Express Creativity: Encourage imaginative thinking and artistic self-expression through the creation of unique artworks.
  • Learn Basic Art Concepts: Introduce foundational art concepts such as color mixing, shapes, lines, and patterns in an age-appropriate and engaging manner.
  • Art Appreciation and Presentation: Expose young artists to a variety of art styles, artists, and cultures to broaden their artistic horizons. Students will also exhibit their own works at the end of semester.
  • Promote Collaboration: Encourage teamwork and social interaction through group projects, where children can share ideas and work together on creative endeavors.
  • Play and Exploration: Above all, enjoy a nurturing and enjoyable environment where young artists can learn through play-based art during their week-long art adventure.
Course Objectives (Ages 9-12)

Aligning with FCPS Elementary key concepts for 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade, this camp explores big ideas of culture, time, and globalization. These may include themes like traditions, environment, visual culture, technology, diversity, and other related topics.

  • Express Creativity: Demonstrate increased creative expression and imaginative thinking in their artwork, developing a personal artistic voice.
  • Explore Diverse Mediums: Experiment with a wide range of art mediums, such as watercolors, acrylics, charcoal, and clay, to discover their preferences and expand their artistic horizons.
  • Refine Fine Motor Skills: Enhance fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination through detailed and intricate art projects.
  • Create Multistep Projects: Complete more complex art projects that involve planning, design, and execution, fostering patience and attention to detail.
  • Cultivate Visual Awareness: Develop an increased appreciation for visual details in the environment, learning to see the world through an artist’s eye.
  • Art Presentation: Learn how to present and exhibit their artwork, especially for the student showcase at the end of semester.
  • Art Appreciation: Deepen their understanding and appreciation of art through guided discussions and critiques of their own and others’ work.

Ages: 6-8 & 9-12

Dates:
Ages 6-8 : June 24 – 28, July 8 – 12, July 15 – 19, July 22 – 26, July 29 – Aug 2, 2024

Ages 9-12: June 24 – 28, July 22 – 26, July 29 – Aug 2, 2024

9:00 am – 4:00 pm 

Tuition: $454

Location: Mason Fairfax Campus, Art & Design Building

Registration (Ages 6 – 8)

June 24 – 28, Ages 6 – 8

July 8 – 12, Ages 6 – 8

July 15 – 19, Ages 6 – 8

July 22 – 26, Ages 6 – 8

Jul 29 – Aug 2, Ages 6 – 8

Registration (Ages 9 – 12)

June 24 – 28, Ages 9 – 12

July 22 – 26, Ages 9 – 12

Jul 29 – Aug 2, Ages 9 – 12


Program Faculty

Program Director
Dr. Justin P. Sutters

Program Director
Assistant Dean of Research and Assessment, College of Visual and Performing Arts
Associate Professor, Art Education
Director, Master of Arts in Education (MAT)

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Dr. Sutters was a K-12 art educator in an urban school district and also taught at an international school in São Paulo, Brazil. He attained his doctorate degree from the Ohio State University receiving national recognition for his dissertation. He currently serves as the Director of the Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) program in Art Education at George Mason University and is an Associate Professor in the School of Art as well as an Affiliate Faculty in the College of Education and Human Development (CEHD). He recently completed a two-year term as the Faculty Fellow for the SACSCOC Reaffirmation Committee and also another two-year term as the Stearns Center Faculty Fellow for Faculty Writing Support.

Dr. Sutters is published in numerous peer-reviewed journals and has presented his research at the state, national and international level in Brazil, China, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan, and Hong Kong. He served as the Chair of the Professional Learning through Research (PLR) working group of the National Art Education Association (NAEA) Research Commission and in other capacities within NAEA. He served on the review board of Art Education and Visual Arts Research and has been a contributing member of the Data Visualization Working Group. His research focuses on pre-service practices, teacher licensure, national demography data, comparative studies/Brazilian studies, and theories pertaining to space and place. In 2019, he received a competitive grant from the National Art Education Foundation pertaining to his academic genealogy project and data visualization. In the summer of 2022, Dr. Sutters was selected to participate in the School for Art Leaders at Crystal Bridges, AK, and also was appointed to a two-year term with the NAEA Research Commission and he also attended the annual meeting in Park City, UT. He also was awarded an Emerging Administrator Fellowship from the National Council of Arts Administrators (NCAA) and will attend the annual conference in October,

He teaches numerous courses in the MAT program, is the Advisor for the NAEA Student Chapter, and mentors students on their research capstone. His studio practice and background currently centers around printmaking and he co-teaches a summer graduate course called Print/Paper/Books. He is the School of Art Liaison and an Advisory Board Member for the Mason Community Arts Academy, where he also teaches Portfolio Preparation courses in the summer for high school students.

June 24 – 28 Faculty

kids art classes fairfax va

Makalla Shernick
Instructor

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Makalla Shernick is a senior at George Mason’s School of Art. She is completing a BFA in Art & Visual Technology with a concentration in Graphic Design and a minor in Studio Art. Concurrently with her undergraduate degree, Makalla is completing a Masters of Teaching in Art Education. Makalla has served as Secretary and is currently the Vice President of George Mason’s student chapter of the National Art Education Association.

In the summer of 2022, she was a teaching assistant for three sections of Anime and Digital Illustration courses in MCAA’s visual arts summer camp program. In Fall 2022, Makalla lead instruction for the Art Explorations 8-week program. Makalla favors an interdisciplinary approach to teaching visual arts and is passionate about utilizing creative technologies in the classroom. Outside of the classroom, Makalla enjoys continuing to cultivate her own artistic practice as well as cooking, playing video games, binging the latest historical drama with her husband, and playing with her rambunctious one-year-old son.

Caroline Harding
Instructor

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Caroline Harding is a mixed-media painter living in Northern Virginia. In the spring of 2023, she received her Bachelor of Fine Arts with a concentration in painting from George Mason University (GMU) and is currently working on obtaining her Master of Art Teaching degree through Mason’s graduate program. She is the current President of GMU’s National Art Education Association (NAEA) student chapter and volunteers to help supervise the local National Junior Art Honor Society at Robinson middle school. In the spring of 2023, Harding was a co-lead instructor for MCAA’s Art Explorations 8-week program.

Harding plans to pursue a career as an art teacher at a public secondary school to help students find their voice through art. While Harding specializes in painting, drawing, and mixed media, she has foundational skills in various mediums ranging from ceramics to animation. Her teaching pedagogy revolves around fostering experimentation and exploration with diverse material and processes, allowing students to delve into uncharted territories and expand their creative horizons. Outside of school, Harding has worked as a professional muralist in Hvelplund, Denmark. In her free time, she enjoys training and working with her dogs, discovering new music, and walking down to her local pond to see the wildlife.

July 8 – 12 Faculty

Info coming soon

July 15 – 19 Faculty

Oksana Howard
Lead Teacher

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Oksana Howard is very excited to be teaching at MCAA this summer again! Oksana graduated with a Master’s in Art Teaching from George Mason University in December 2022. Prior to this, she earned a Graduate Certificate in Reggio Emilia Approach from Antioch University. Oksana has many years of experience teaching art to students ranging from preschool to high school. She believes that young children are equal citizens of our society and are full of prior knowledge. The pedagogy of listening is the guiding light of her teaching philosophy. Before coming to Northern Virginia, Oksana lived in Eastern Europe, Southeast Asia, and Southern Africa.

When Oksana is not teaching, she spends time knitting and sewing with her daughters, creating collages and sculptures with recycled materials, baking, and gardening. She looks forward to co-constructing knowledge alongside students and discovering their unique creative voices and talents through non-verbal art languages!

July 22 – 26 Faculty

Info coming soon

July 29 – Aug 2 Faculty

Oksana Howard
Lead Teacher

Read More

Oksana Howard is very excited to be teaching at MCAA this summer again! Oksana graduated with a Master’s in Art Teaching from George Mason University in December 2022. Prior to this, she earned a Graduate Certificate in Reggio Emilia Approach from Antioch University. Oksana has many years of experience teaching art to students ranging from preschool to high school. She believes that young children are equal citizens of our society and are full of prior knowledge. The pedagogy of listening is the guiding light of her teaching philosophy. Before coming to Northern Virginia, Oksana lived in Eastern Europe, Southeast Asia, and Southern Africa.

When Oksana is not teaching, she spends time knitting and sewing with her daughters, creating collages and sculptures with recycled materials, baking, and gardening. She looks forward to co-constructing knowledge alongside students and discovering their unique creative voices and talents through non-verbal art languages!


Notes

  • Please note that group classes are subject to cancellation if minimum enrollment is not reached.
  • Be sure to check our policies and procedures regarding registration, withdrawals, refunds, and more for summer group classes.
  • All students will receive a Welcome Letter via email at least 1 week before the class starts with all necessary details.
  • Online registration closes 2 business days before the first class, however space may still be available. Please contact academy@gmu.edu for more information. A $10 late registration fee may apply.
  • For additional information, please contact the Academy at academy@gmu.edu.