Welcome Art Friends!
Hi! I am Ashley Wilson, mom to three beautiful daughters, Little Maker (age 18 months), Middle Maker (age 4) and Big Maker (age 6). We live in sunny San Diego and it is my daily goal to be outside as much as possible. When not creating fun messy projects in our home studio we can be found at the beach, enjoying Sunday brunch, having family dance parties, cooking up a storm or playing dress up.
Little Makers & Bakers began when I started documenting all the process art and sensory play activities we were doing at home. After seeing the joy, curiosity and artistic development happening with my own children, I knew I wanted to extend this offering to the greater community.
Before becoming ‘mom the art teacher’ to my three Little Makers I taught pre-K, kinder, 1st grade and 4th grade. I received a BA in Early Childhood Education from Brown University and then went on to get a Masters Degree in Early Childhood Education from Lesley University in Cambridge, MA. Fun Fact: My first year teaching I was a Reggio Emilia Atelierista! That is a fancy way of saying art teacher in a Reggio Emilia inspired classroom.
I absolutely love blending my passion for teaching/educating and my passion for artistic discovery and process art! Our home studio is as much about art-making as it is community building and friendship. Our growing art community is filled with like-minded parents who see the tremendous value in allowing their children to create without restriction, enjoy the process of art-making and explore at their own pace.
I look forward to meeting you and your Little Maker(s) in our studio soon!
All the best,
What is process art?
Process art is all about the process of making art (also known at the doing), not the finished product or end result. ‘Invitations to create’ or ‘invitations to play’ are prompts to invite children to explore all different kinds of art materials, processes and sensory based play. It is all about the experience a child has while they’re creating and empowering them by giving complete creative control to explore the materials presented. Process focused art encourages children to engage freely with materials at their own pace and Makers are encouraged to use their imagination, make discoveries and not worry about the end result. If they create a wonderful end product, that’s great, but the main focus is on the process. The doing. The creating. The learning. The making. And of course, all the fun that comes along with the discovery process.
What are the benefits of process art for my child?
Process art allows children to explore a variety of art materials and the world around them. Open-ended art activities are great for encouraging problem-solving, spatial reasoning and figuring out how things work. This naturally leads to asking questions and being curious. Process art & play encourages curiosity and supports higher level thinking. Learning through artistic play (without rigid guidelines) allows a child to follow their interests while enhancing their fine motor skills, gross motor control and observation skills. It also encourages sensory exploration, risk-taking and self-expression. Process art allows children to authentically be themselves, make decisions based on their own creative interests and become creative and confident thinkers.
A little more about our studio & style of classes…
Little Makers & Bakers is a process-based home art studio where exploration and creativity is encouraged! Our classes are not formally instructed with step by step crafts. Rather, we embrace the mess and allow children to fully immerse themselves in the process of creating while exposing them to a variety of art mediums and sensory experiences. Our classes are child-lead/teacher-facilitated and Makers are allowed to move fluidly to different art stations exploring at their own pace and interests. Outcomes are always very different for each child and it is magical to see the diversity in their creativity and thinking skills. Our cozy, safe and friendly home studio space allows for authentic artistic experiences full of play, discovery and social interaction. Sometimes there are pieces of art that come home, sometimes there are not.
We understand and respect that every child is unique and explores materials in different ways and at their own pace. Some children learn by quiet observation while others learn by actively participating. Our classes are child lead and meant to support all learners.
* Classes for children ages 9M- 5 yrs require an actively participating adult caregiver. Classes for children ages 5-9 are drop off classes and adult participation is not required.