Youth Art Month links more than 800,000 K-12 students
and over 200 art educators all across America
Student exhibitions, public artworks, art festivals, and school events raise awareness and support of the visual arts to
- local and state education officials
- business and community leaders
- state and federal legislators
The 2016/2017 theme is “United through Art”.
Youth Art Month History
- The Art & Creative Materials Institute (ACMI) created Children’s Art Month in 1961 as an event to emphasize the value to children from participating in visual art education.
- In 1969 the celebration expanded to include secondary school students, and the Children’s Art Month event officially became known as Youth Art Month.
- In 1984, ACMI created the non-profit organization The Council for Art Education (CFAE) to advocate for visual art education. CFAE coordinates the Youth Art Month program at the national level.
While Youth Art Month typically occurs in March, local and state events celebrating visual art education take place on almost a year round basis! Events and fundraisers take place in schools, libraries, art centers, museums, and even state capitol buildings.
Youth Art Month Benefits
Youth Art Month exists to:
- Recognize art education as a viable factor in the total education curriculum that develops citizens of a global society.
- Recognize art is a necessity for the full development of better quality of life for all.
- Direct attention to the value of art education for divergent and critical thinking.
- Expand art programs in schools and stimulate new art programs.
- Encourage commitment to the arts by students, community organizations, and individuals everywhere.
- Provide additional opportunities for individuals of all ages to participate in creative art learning.
- Increase community, business and governmental support for art education.
- Increase community understanding and interest in art and art education through involvement in art exhibits, workshops, and other creative ventures.
- Reflect and demonstrate the goals of the National Art Education Association that work toward the improvement of art education at all levels.
To learn more about Youth Art Month or how to get involved in your state, contact your Youth Art Month Chairperson or State Art Education Association. See the Youth Art Month Overview for more information.
Youth Art Month State Flags and Banners
- Art teachers coordinate the design contest at the local level.
- Winning state designs are made into flags and displayed in the Youth Art Month Museum at the National Art Education Association Convention (NAEA) in March.
Youth Art Month Art Exhibitions
- Students participate in art exhibitions during Youth Art Month.
- The Council for Art Education features select works of art from all states in the Youth Art Month Museum during NAEA in March.
Youth Art Month Activities
Celebrating Youth Art Month is fun!
- Approximately 700 students at Lake Hamilton Middle School in Arkansas created “Get Well” cards for patients at St. Vincent’s Hospital in Hot Springs, Arkansas as a community service project.
- Broward County Art Educators in Florida exhibited artwork alongside a display board informing the viewer about the inspirations, connections, studio skills and standards of the learning activities and how they culminated in the student’s work.
- Over 60 schools and 325 student artists participated in the largest and first ever Illinois Regional High School Art Show in Chicago in 2014. Over 2500 people attended, and 90 senior students received at least one college scholarship.
- Texas created Big Art Day. This one day celebration includes 125 public K-12 school events and 25 community arts sponsored events.