Celebrating Youth Art Month with Student Voices

By Joni Starr, Chadwick Noellert, Liz Wylegala

Youth Art Month is an annual observance each March that emphasizes the value of art education for all children and encourages support for quality school art programs. We, at MAEIA, feel the best way to discover the value of art education is to ask students what they think. In this blog post we happily bring you students from St. Martha’s School in Okemos and from MacDonald Middle School in East Lansing alongside a listing of the goals of Youth Art Month. Enjoy!

Started in 1961 by the Art and Craft Materials Institute (ACMI) in cooperation with the National Art Education Association (NAEA), Youth Art Month is administered by the Council for Art Education (CAE) and exists to:

  1. Recognize art education as a viable factor in the total education curricular that develops citizens of a global society.
  2. Recognize art is a necessity for the full development of better quality of life for all.
  3. Direct attention to the value of art education for divergent and critical thinking.
  4. Expand art programs in schools and stimulate new art programs.
  5. Encourage commitment to the arts by students, community organizations, and individuals everywhere.
  6. Provide additional opportunities for individuals of all ages to participate in creative art learning.
  7. Increase community, business, and governmental support for art education.
  8. Increase community understanding and interest in art and art education through involvement in art exhibits, workshops, and other creative ventures.
  9. Reflect and demonstrate the goals of the National Art Education Association that work toward the improvement of art education at all levels.

MacDonald Middle School art students.

Click on the student to listen to their answer to the question, “What does art mean to you?”

St. Martha’s School art students.

Click on the photo to listen to their answer to the question, “What does art mean to you?”

Observation of Youth Art Month is carried out by volunteers around the country including teachers, parents, leaders of youth and arts organizations, businesspeople, and students. What are you doing to celebrate March as Youth Art Month?

MAEIA is grateful to Liz Wylegala, art teacher at St. Martha’s School, and Chadwick Noellert, art teacher at MacDonald Middle School for capturing student voices.


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