A world without music or art would be an unchanging, dreary place for all children, according to one music instructor.
The importance of music and art and how they benefit the lives of children and adults must never be forgotten, said Karen Brannon, owner of Moz Art Studios in Van Buren. One way to help make sure communities stay focused on music and art is the presence of music camps and art camps, she said.
“Music completely changes our lives,” Brannon said. “It’s a great way to express ourselves in a way that no other way can, really.”
Brannon said she is honored to be a part of a new program that will bring week-long music and art camps to Crawford County public libraries in the coming weeks. Her music camp was created to reach children who are ages 6-14.
“The camp is for all levels,” Brannon said. “We’ll learn singing skills, we’ll learn about rhythm, there will be fun games and the children will learn about composers.”
The work of Beethoven, Mozart and Scott Joplin and other influential creators will be explored during the music camp, she said.
“We’ll also have what we call instrumental petting zoos each day,” Brannon said. “Different instruments will be featured on different days. One day we’ll look at stringed instruments, another day will be percussion, another day will be brass instruments and another day will be folk instruments.”
Like music, art plays a crucial part in everyone’s lives on a daily basis, said Terri Burt, a programming manager for the Center for Art and Education in Van Buren. The center will host weeklong art camps for children ages 6-14 in the coming weeks at the public libraries in Cedarville, Alma and Mulberry.
“We have educators who are teaching the classes, and our educators are professional, practicing artists with experience,” Burt said. “The art camps are very customized by age, and we know that the kids will get focused attention on where they are at now and what we want them to learn.”
Artists from past and contemporary eras will be a focus of the camps, which will allow children to create art in a variety of forms, she said.
“We’ll introduce the children to different artists, techniques, brush strokes, patterns and the colors of art,” Burt said. “We also teach the children how to look at a piece of art differently. There are so many techniques that an artist uses to create a piece. We want the children to know that.”
Following is a list of some of the camps and their locations:
• Music camp from 9 a.m. to noon June 4-8 at the Alma Public Library, 624 Fayetteville Ave. in Alma.
• Art camp from 9 a.m. to noon June 18-22 at the Cedarville Public Library, 737 Pirates Way in Cedarville.
• Music camp from 9 a.m. to noon June 18-22 at the Mountainburg Public Library, 225 U.S. 71 Northwest in Mountainburg.
• Music camp from 9 a.m. to noon June 25-29 at the Mulberry Public Library, 220 N. Main St. in Mulberry.
• Art camp from 9 a.m. to noon July 9-13 at the Alma Public Library in Alma.
• Art camp from 9 a.m. to noon July 16-20 at the Mulberry Public Library in Mulberry.
• Music camp from 9 a.m. to noon July 16-20 at the Cedarville Public Library in Cedarville.
Registration for the art and music camps is $20 each and can be completed by calling the respective library — Alma Public Library at (479) 632-4140, the Cedarville Public Library at (479) 410-1853, the Mountainburg Public Library at (479) 369-1600 or the Mulberry Public Library at (479) 997-1226.
Those children who participate in the programs will benefit for years, Brannon said.
“Music helps build math skills because of learning rhythm,” she said. “With music, we also can reach out to others and be a blessing to others.”
“I don’t think some people understand that art is in everything we do,” she said. “The children will go home with several projects.
“And that will be good because art teaches them life skills and problem-solving skills,” Burt added. “The kids get to dig deep into these camps, and each day they will build upon what they learn.”