Programs for Children and Teens

A children's program participant from the Boys and Girls Club of Central Virginia holds up her finished painting.
Our children’s art programs introduce children aged six months to twelve years to Aboriginal art and the techniques used by Aboriginal artists. Programs include a hands-on project using varied media. Past art projects include printmaking, “dot” painting, constructing and painting “bark” baskets, “rock” art, photography and collaborative painting combined with storytelling. Periodically our children’s programs are offered off-site at public libraries or other venues. Check our calendar of events for upcoming children’s programs.

Visiting Aboriginal artists Susan Marrawarr, Donna Brown, Fiona Omeenyo and Silas Hobson have participated in past programs. Artists from the Charlottesville community including Fenella Belle, Lee Alter, Edith Arbaugh, Joan Soderlund, and Rosamond Casey have also led children’s art programs at the Kluge-Ruhe Collection.

The Kluge-Ruhe Collection participated in the Fralin Museum of Art’s 2012, 2013 and 2014 Early Visions programs for the Boys and Girls Club of Charlottesville.

Tots and Dots
For children aged six months to four years
First Tuesday of each month.
Registration required

Join us for this two-part early visual literacy program for children ages six months to four years. The first twenty minutes will feature a brief tour focusing on basic elements of visual art and ways to further stimulate visual and interpretive development in young children. According to early childhood development studies, infants and toddlers are attracted to high contrast visuals, bold images, and colorful objects, making Aboriginal art the perfect starting point for your child’s art education. The last twenty minutes will feature multi-sensory structured play for children aged two to four led by Kluge-Ruhe museum education staff, while babies and caregivers enjoy social play in the gallery with visually stimulating toys.

Registration is open for the next Tots and Dots. Please register for the program time that suits you best. Each time slot is limited to 20 participants and features the same programming.

10:00 am: register here
11:00 am: register here
1:00 pm: register here

Strollers and crying babies are welcome. For more information, call the museum at 434-244-0234 or email at

Young Art Historians
The Kluge-Ruhe Collection has numerous objects about which very little is known. In this program, high school juniors and seniors are invited to help us solve the mystery of a painting by spending two afternoons at the museum observing and investigating an artwork to produce a detailed description for publication on the museum’s website. See our current events page to register for an upcoming Young Art Historian program.