The Education Department builds community and individual agency through creative exploration.

Online Registration for Adult Classes and Kids Summer Camps is Open! View and register for the classes of your choice by clicking View Upcoming Classes

Our darkroom supports up to 14 students at once with small and medium format printing capabilities, and fully stocked chemicals for students to use during their classes.
Our metals studio includes a polishing and buffing station, 5 soldering stations, a chest of community tools, and more!
Our ceramics studio boasts 14 electric wheels, a multitude of handmade glazes (26 high fire glazes for our gas kiln), a gas kiln, several electric barrel kilns and 4 kick wheels. In addition to our own community of ceramic artists, our studio hosts IUSB, Bethel University, and River Montessori classes as well. We also have a full time Ceramic Studio Specialist overseeing the studio and its needs.
Our weaving studio is host to 13 looms, 5 table looms, and 3 wheels for spinning.

The education and outreach department at the South Bend Museum of Art strives to create and maintain an accessible and welcoming space for all. We offer guided tours, school programming, special youth and community centered exhibition opportunities, outreach programming, an annual student-faculty exhibition, and classes in our materials-based studios throughout the entire year.


Our education programs range from tuition-based studios classes, artist workshops, scholarship-based workshops for partner organizations in the community, continuing studies for our docents, school tours and activities for students in the South Bend Community School Corporation, Penn Harris Madison and Mishawaka School districts, in collaboration with the Snite Museum of Art.



Our belief in using art to create empathy through access, wonder, and discussion for visitors of all ages is the foundation of all of our educational programs – striving to create a safe and rewarding museum experience for all of our guests.


Our teaching artists offer studio classes focused on techniques and discovery through creative community, mentorship, and one-on-one instruction to meet the needs of our students.


We think it’s important to define what we see a museum doing today. Museum’s are important to their communities, not only to reflect the community through the artworks they exhibit, but also to support it: promoting artistic practices and engagements, fostering productive communication through exhibition programming, and inspiring conversations that create empathy and bring people together.

We believe a museum’s power does not only exist inside institutional walls, but within its community – strengthening relationships and learning from one another.


We love our community and want to get to know you so we can better represent you at the SBMA. We have been building our relationships with area organizations through shared experiences, collaborative events and workshops, art supply drives and most of all, care. We are pleased to have partnered with the Boys and Girls Club of Elkhart County, The Boys and Girls Club of St. Joseph County, Lighthouse Autism Centers, Penn Harris Madison’s Art Week, La Casa de Amistad, St. Joseph County Public Library, DTSB, and more! 

If you are interested in working with us on a project or just meeting with us to start a dialog, please reach out to Kolton Sizer, Curator of Education and Public Programming at 574-235-9103 or Katie Neece, Curator of Education and Studio Programs at 574-235-9252


Two of SBMA’s three floors hold nine materials-focused studios in weaving, ceramics, metalsmithing, darkroom photography, 2-D and 3D practices. 



In 2019, we started a teen advisory council we call TEENFORUM. Each year, we work with area high schools to inform students about the leadership opportunities TEENFORUM provides with regards to professional and creative development, networking opportunities, volunteer opportunities, and more. For more information or to join today, reach out to


The South Bend Museum of Art is the affiliate for the Scholastic Art Awards’ Northwest Indiana and Southwest Lower Michigan Region. This region includes the following counties: INDIANA counties of Benton, Cass, Elkhart, Fulton, Jasper, Kosciusko, Lake, LaPorte, Marshall, Newton, Porter, Pulaski, St. Joseph, Stark, White; and MICHIGAN counties of Berrien, Cass and St. Joseph.

The Scholastic Art Awards represents the most comprehensive national annual assessment of the creative spirit among American teens. Three core values have not changed since The Awards inception: freedom of expression, a blind adjudication process, and work criteria based on originality, technical proficiency, and emergence of personal voice. Students in seventh through twelfth grade submit digital images of their work, which is juried by more than 50 jurors solicited from the local arts and education community. A process of “blind adjudication” is used, whereby judging is determined on a merit basis with only the art object under review, without any knowledge as to student identity (gender, race, background, etc.). Jurors are instructed to select artwork that excels in 1) Originality, 2) Technical Skill, and 3) Emergence of a personal vision or voice.


We have partnered with the South Bend Heritage Foundation since 2011, in providing an important service to the residents of Robertson’s Apartments, a downtown senior living community, offering monthly art classes. Classes offer a flexible curriculum, where residents can explore a variety of art processes and mediums to actively engage their minds and bodies in art making, conversation, and community.


The Festival of Banners promotes art in the community by bringing art to the public, and providing an excellent venue for artists of all ages and skill sets. Three age categories–youth, teen, and adult–allow fun for all. Designs are submitted on a small scale (on paper). A juror from our community selects designs based on creative interpretation by the artist. Since the project began in 2007, we have invited artists to paint their designs in our studios before turning them over to DTSB to hang along the streets just in time for Best Week Ever and through ArtBeat. In 2022, we made the decision to print the designs digitally, allowing for a more accessible experience for all participants in our community.


Our former Dot Shop was transformed into a gallery space in 2021, with an exhibition specifically designed for South Bend Community School Corporation’s K-5 graders (those not old enough to participate in the Scholastic Art Awards) called Beyond Looking.

Partnering with K-6 art teachers, we asked their students to create a visual response to the question “How Will You Change the World?” –– a question asked in the midst of a global pandemic while most students were learning from home. Beyond Looking invites you to peek through a portal revealing Generation Alpha’s vision of how they see themselves impacting the world and what they see that needs change.

This exhibition showcased almost 700 works of art from SBCSC K-5 students in our community.


Studio Programs