FWMOA early learning center

Photo credit: Teresa Shaw / Working TravelingMom

Drawing on the walls is not only allowed, but encouraged at the Fort Wayne Museum of Art in Indiana.

A recent renovation at the museum included creating an Early Learning Center, in which children can experience art in different hands-on ways, such as through building, writing, reading and, yes, even drawing on the wall.

Creating Art in Fort Wayne Museum of Art

My family and I recently visited the Fort Wayne Museum of Art with our four- and six-year old kids. While my husband and I were eager to visit the Chihuly glass exhibit, the kids wanted to go inside the Early Learning Center, a large, vibrant room at one end of the DestinationReviewmuseum that has several play-centered activity areas for children. Areas are designated as “Build,” “Draw” and “Read” zones, and a flat screen TV and bean bag chairs near the entrance encourage kids to sit back and watch various art- and museum-related videos.

Photo credit: Teresa Shaw / Working TravelingMom

Photo credit: Teresa Shaw / Working TravelingMom

A Family-Friendly Space in the Art Museum

Our kids enjoyed leaving their mark on the drawing wall (a whiteboard with dozens of colored markers to choose from) and building with the materials in the “Build” area. My husband and I appreciated the grown-up-sized seating in the “Read” section, and even made note of a few art books on the shelves that our kids might enjoy having at home.

While the kids were building skyscrapers with wooden blocks, my husband and I realized we both didn’t have to sit there; instead, we could take turns exploring the museum alone (especially the glass exhibit!) while the kids played.

The room is intended for kids up to age eight, and monthly programming, called My Mini Museum, provides museum staff-led activities for young ones.