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A Summer Camp
for Creative Kids

story by Audrey Poff, photo by Cody Moore

Born as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Foundation of Arts’ Creative Kids Academy (CKA) will return this summer to offer parents the opportunity to immerse young students in the arts.

“In its beginnings, hospital personnel needed childcare during the start of the pandemic because schools had closed,” said Foundation of Arts (FOA) Executive Director Kristi Pulliam. “So, the FOA was looking for a way to use what we do through the arts to meet that need.”

Designed for ages 4-10, the academy will run weekdays from 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. in the FOA Arts Center during the months of June and July. Parents must commit in advance to at least one month of service to reserve a spot.

“This year, kids from everywhere can enroll in Creative Kids Academy,” said Pulliam. “In the summer, families need a place for their kids to go where it’s safe, fun, creative and welcoming. It’s a little different from last year in that kids will get to participate in FOA camps and classes as they are offered, so they will get a taste of a variety of arts experiences.”

As a result of last year’s summer program, Pulliam said new families were introduced to the FOA and its year-long offerings.

“Looking back, the inaugural academy provided some families an introduction to the FOA, and they’ve stayed with us throughout the year because their kids loved the atmosphere, the people and the programming,” said Pulliam.

In addition to meeting a need for summer childcare, Pulliam said the FOA’s Creative Kids Academy is a positive experience for students.
“The positive impacts of CKA are that they discover new things they can do and new people with whom they can interact positively,” she said. “Whether it’s tap, jazz, ballet, singing or acting, these are all activities kids don’t get a lot of experience with on a daily basis. In addition, art classes and arts activities in a nurturing environment allow kids to discover hidden talents and develop a quiet confidence that empowers them to be open to new opportunities and thoughts for their future.”

Students may attend the academy two, three or five days a week: Monday through Friday, Monday-Wednesday-Friday or Tuesday-Thursday. The daily itinerary will include arts-related activities such as dance, drama and art, as well as supervised outdoor/indoor playtime. For more information or to register for this summer’s Creative Kids Academy, call (870) 935-2726 or visit foajonesboro.org.