McMaster Museum of Art’s education staff provide free visual art-based learning opportunities. Programs are designed for a variety of audiences including elementary and high school, postsecondary, adults, and groups of all ages. We have a selection of in-person and virtual program options.
Watch the Creative Kids video about our school programs here:
Build a Program with Us!
We are dedicated to cross curricular and integrated learning, bringing art education into a variety of subject areas in elementary and high school classes. We have partnered and worked extensively with boards across Southern Ontario, including HWDSB, HWCDSB, GECDSB, HDSB, HCDSB, DPCDSB, PDSB, private and Montessori schools.
Have an idea for a program? Interested in collaborating? We’d love to work with you!
For more information or to book a program, contact:
Teresa Gregorio, Education Officer
Please note: M(M)A programs are FREE. Note that the museum has the right to cancel programs in advance of scheduled start times due to unforeseen or unexpected circumstances. We will work with you to find a time to reschedule.
Programs are flexible and we will work with you to focus on your classroom interests and needs.
Introduction to Decolonial Museums
Participants will look at museums with a critical lens. The coloniality of these institutions will be examined, and participants will be introduced to contemporary criticisms, decolonial actions, and the roles of different professionals within museums who perform this work.
Indigenous Art and Connection to Land
Through guided looking and reflective exercises, participants will engage with notions of land as represented in work by Indigenous artists from several nations. McMaster-area participants (traditional territory of Mississauga and Haudenosaunee Nations) will connect with art, histories, and issues directly related to the land in which they live and examine their shared responsibility as outlined in the Dish With One Spoon wampum agreement.
the cut, the tear & the remix: contemporary collage and Black futures (Coming soon)
Based on the 2021 virtual exhibition, this program is designed to engage participants in various themes surrounding collage and the Afrofuture. More information coming soon.
we are all connected (outdoor program)
Art and visual culture can help us think about who we are and who we are responsible to.
Participants will consider their connection to individuals, groups, and life around them through facilitated discussion and interaction with outdoor artwork on McMaster’s campus. These works will engage with ideas including how artists ask questions, the role of visual culture in our lives, and the connections we all share with each other.
Logo Design: How Artists Communicate
Through guided looking at artwork from the McMaster Museum of Art collection, participants will examine how artists communicate. Connection will be made to commercial art via app logos, and participants will be asked to engage with critical media literacy and consider design choice motivations.
Art, Music, Identity
Participants will examine the connection between visual art and music through engaging activities that contrast and compare sounds and visual art. A hands-on activity will ask participants to respond to clips of music, with a suggested follow up activity to reflect on personal identity, music, and visual art composition.
Map Making and Art: High School SHSM Geography and Art
Participants will examine various approaches to map making, looking critically at the colonial nature of maps.
The program includes a facilitated discussion surrounding map making as visual expression of cultural values, and critical interpretation of included and excluded content. Indigenous conceptions and connections to land will be highlighted.
A post-program activity asks participants to engage with research and listed resources to answer reflection questions designed to encourage critical thinking and connect to each individual’s responsibilities to the Dish With One Spoon wampum agreement.
The Power of Arts-Based Learning
Participants will hear and experience how visual art-based learning is vital to a variety of different career paths, beneficial to individuals’ well-being, and can help society build a better future. Observation, social/emotional learning and so many other skills are developed in the Arts!
Art, Sketching, and Cultivating a Creative Habit for Well-being
In this presentation, participants explore the methods and benefits of cultivating a creative habit by keeping a sketchbook. Through examples from the McMaster Museum of Art collection, participants see how artists approach their own creativity, engaging in the mindful practice of observation, contemplation, and reflection.
Digital Collage and Design
This digital collage workshop has participants look at examples of collage from the museum’s collection for inspiration, explore uses of collage in art, and think critically about design choices for their own digital collage work. We look critically at context and juxtaposition, exploring how artists can interrupt dominant narratives and question power structures through collage.
Pattern: Math and Art Combine
Discussion of selected artworks from the McMaster Museum of Art collection will centre on how artists thoughtfully and critically use and create pattern to share meaning and communicate. Various artistic applications of pattern will be examined. This will provide a framework for the activity where participants will create two simple patterns; one ruled by shape, the other by value.
Identity and Art
Participants will examine identity and how it is expressed by artists from different time periods, places, and cultures and how these contexts affect the perspectives of both artist and viewer. Style, media, and symbolism will be discussed, and will form the basis of the activity.
Printmaking: Mass Communication on a Piece of Paper
Participants will design and create their own printing block and discover the mass communicative power of making multiple original artworks. Various artistic approaches throughout history will be explored. The artistic challenge posed will focus on creating simple and effective images in order to communicate with the viewer.