Wild Hearts Nature Arts Programs for Youth
Nature Inspired Expressive Arts: a unique blend of arts & environmental education
Art is as natural as sunshine and as vital as nourishment. - MaryAnn Kohl
Wild Hearts Nature Arts Program provides a unique blend of expressive arts and environmental education on the sweet, nature-based Reach School campus. This summer, we are integrating the child-centric resilience practices gained through the Sonoma Community Resilience Collaborative's Professional Training with the Center for Mind Body Medicine! Think of it as mindfulness meets nature meets expressive arts! It is going to be a very rich experience!
Nature-based expressive arts curriculum is designed to increase environmental awareness, cultivate creativity, and build community. With an emphasis on the creative process rather than the creative product, youth learn to trust their own creativity and themselves through the Creative Connection® process. We co-create a safe and inclusive space where each person can authentically express their innate creativity and playfulness through the arts. We connect in small groups and/or whole circle to share our creations and reflect on our creative process. We witness each other and celebrate our creativity with unconditional positive regard. In this way, children build empathy and honor creative diversity within themselves and amongst their peers.
We engage in playful artistic activities that connect us to ourselves, nature, and each other. Children are supported in expressing their creativity through self-directed, multi-modal arts. Multi-modal arts includes art created with natural items, recycled materials, found objects, textiles, clay, paint, oil pastels, chalks, collage, assemblage, sewing, and/or anything else our wildly creative imaginations can come up with! In addition to art, youth will experience drumming, storytelling, movement, and learn mindfulness practices.
Nature exploration will include art in nature and with natural materials like clay, twine, feathers, stones, etc. (we like to spend a lot of time down by the willows exploring and creating). Each day children will have the opportunity to engage in Open Art Studio, which means they get to utilize all the art materials available in the art studio and create whatever they can imagine.
This camp is experiential and process-oriented. There is no pressure to produce art, but rather opportunities to explore and experiment with various art modalities and techniques in a safe and inclusive environment.