Steamboat Art Museum

Youth Programs

Welcome To Youth Programs

SAM has developed distinctive, youth educational programming for schools, youth groups, and human service groups of Routt County, free of cost. This varied curriculum, inspired by our exhibits, are experienced both with field trips to the museum or brought to the classroom or youth center. The Cole Verploeg Youth Gallery displays related exhibits geared towards our younger patrons and will periodically display works created by youth participating in our outreach programs.

Targeted groups include Routt County school-aged kids: Children from Soda Creek and Strawberry Park Elementary Schools, Hayden Elementary and High School, the Steamboat Springs Middle and High Schools, the North Routt Charter School, Yampa Valley High School, Emerald Mountain School, the Montessori School, and Home School Groups, Discovery Learning Center and Kids Cabin Preschool have all participated. Groups from Horizons, Yampatika, the Boys and Girls Club, Young at Art Writers, Girl Scouts, English Language Learners and an Afterschool Learners group have also attended.

Teachers are invited to help shape the area of study with SAM's education coordinator, Dona Steele. Focus goes beyond creating art, art appreciation, and technique, and but also can incorporate the culture and heritage of the West, history, social studies, English language learning and public speaking, natural or art histories. Activities have included scavenger hunts, vocabulary development with ELL students, Public Speaking with YVHS, art projects relating to our exhibits and interactive exhibits geared towards kids. These activities also aid kids with developing descriptive and critical skills while experiencing art, and proper etiquette while in a public, cultural venue.

SAM is just beginning to realize the educational and therapeutic capabilities of our larger exhibits, the new Youth Gallery, and workshop room, and the potential for collaboration with other organizations. Our goal is to incorporate art and our exhibits to further the organization’s goals and support their participating families. SAM offers an important educational and cultural component to our region that could otherwise be inaccessible to many demographics because of travel, financial and cultural limitations.

Our goal is that art and our exhibits further the visiting organization's mission and support their participating kids and families.

Since the most recent renovation of the building, completed December 2017, over 2000 children and adults have participated in educational group visits to SAM!

From the Brookings Institute-

“We find that a substantial increase in arts educational experiences has remarkable impacts on students’ academic, social, and emotional outcomes. Relative to students assigned to the control group, treatment school students experienced … reduction in disciplinary infractions, an improvement … in standardized writing scores, and an increase … in their compassion for others. In terms of our measure of compassion for others, students who received more arts education experiences are more interested in how other people feel and more likely to want to help people who are treated badly…

We also find that increases in arts learning positively and significantly affect students’ school engagement, college aspirations, and their inclinations to draw upon works of art as a means for empathizing with others. In terms of school engagement, students in the treatment group were more likely to agree that schoolwork is enjoyable, makes them think about things in new ways, and that their school offers programs, classes, and activities that keep them interested in school.”

-From the Center for Online Education-

“People have been so wrapped up in showing how arts education benefits students, many haven't stopped to consider how it also impacts educators… Not only were students at schools with high levels of art education earning higher scores on critical thinking tests, but teachers also seemed happier. Part of the increase in their satisfaction was a result of their charges, who were found to be generally more cooperative and expressive and enjoy a better rapport with educators. That wasn't all, however, as teachers at schools that emphasized arts education enjoyed greater job satisfaction, were more interested in their work and likely to be innovative and pursued personal development experiences. It's not a trivial finding, as what is good for instructors is often very good for their students as well.”