Seeds of Change: Social Justice and Arts Camp

Ages: 10-14  

Hours: 8 AM-3 PM


Purpose: This project is an opportunity for children who are questioning the world and the capitalist culture as they experience it. It's purpose is to establish a safe space for expression and creativity that is based off of deep reflection of the messaging they receive. The youth would be introduced to movement concepts and partner exercises exploring grounding with their bodies and their breath, so that a movement vocabulary will open them to a trust that the group can hold together. Specific roles will be available for the daily needs of the individuals, which is the greatest benefit to a large age range. Due to popular demand, there will be three weeks of Puppetry.

Week 1 : Masks  June 19-23

Campers will be introduced to Mask Making with a visual tour of Mask Traditions. They will create plaster molds of their faces for their first project. We will take a field trip to the Brooklyn Museum for the exhibit: 

"We Wanted a Revolution: Black Radical Women, 1965–85"

We will talk about representation in the arts and in this culture, encouraging students to notice what they usually see in an art museums, and what they would like to see more of. We will ask them to turn inward and name qualities they would like to wear on their masks both everyday, and in the world of characters which we will create through masked theater exercises, using our second set of masks which we will create with clay molds and paper maché. From 1-3 each day we will eat lunch and play games in Prospect Park. 

Week 2 Puppetry June 25-30

Campers will be introduced to puppetry through videos and live performance in Prospect Park by the Camp Leaders. We will plan and create puppets with cardboard, clay, and paper maché. Our field trips this week will include visiting Brooklyn Museum and to see a  Puppet Show performed by Maggie Winston and Gem LaVie. On Friday afternoon we will perform a choreographed parade for the parents in Prospect Park. From 1-3 each day we will eat lunch and play games in Prospect Park.

Week 3 Murals and Puppetry July 17-21

We will begin our week with a morning of puppetry and an afternoon of field trip to two nearby Murals nearby created by school groups with messages about female empowerment and respect. We will project images of Murals from around the world for inspiration in the each morning. We will do group discussions through movement exercises with the prompts of the community values that we understand from the murals we will come in contact with. We will visit the Brooklyn Museum and write and create a short puppet show performance based on the ideas that come from this processing, using wood Paper Maché and foam. From 1-3 each day, apart from field trip days, we will eat lunch and play games in Prospect Park. Performance for the parents will be held on Friday in the Park.

Week 4 Puppetry and Performance July 24-28

The field trip this week will will bring us to community gardens with shared community values. We will be discussing the ways that systems work through movement, building upon the movement vocabulary that we have established. We will create dance sequences in a circle exercise, adding on a move with each person we reach until we have a full dance sequence circle. Another movement exercise, The Machine will encourage the children to create dynamic systems of movement inspired by ideas that will become more and more complex throughout the time together. We will begin with ideas such as “hope” and “building” and develop into Machines that are informed by the way schools, trains, and other systems around them function. We will each make a mask, and we will present a performance piece dance sequence "Community Machine" on Friday afternoon, which will include puppet characters from previous weeks and our masks. From 1-3 each day we will eat lunch and play games in Prospect Park. Performance for the parents will be held on Friday in the Park.


Aviva Jobin-Leeds: Currently teaches an After School Puppetry Class at Brooklyn Apple Academy. She has worked as a full time Montessori School Substitute and has lead summer arts programs in the Studio of Josh Sarantitis. Her goal is for youth to connect to their voices and a collective creation process, to become more equipped to deal with a system that undermines their experiences and denies their humanities. Her professional goal is to work with youth to create theatre that speaks truths about the system and celebrates the power of community. She has done the Teachers Training at University of Rhode Island for the Kingian Nonviolence Curriculum, and a Trauma Informed Dance Teachers Training. She works with Puppetry collectives Bread and Puppet based in Glover Vermont, and Papel Machete based in San Juan Puerto Rico. She also works with Looking Glass Productions as performer and Artist Assistant. 

Mikaela González: Graduating this year from Hampshire College, Mikaela is working on a collective on-campus mural celebrating healing, resilience, and solidarity vital in the Black and brown struggle for liberation. Her artwork cannot be separated from its social purpose, whether it be raising awareness, building community, celebrating identity, or creating space for radical collaboration. While at Hampshire, she has produced artwork for Movement for Justice in El Barrio (a Harlem-based housing justice organization); worked with NYC youth in a mosaic project along with artist Josh Sarantitis; held an exhibition at the Smith College Campus Center; studied printmaking, collage, and political art in Cuba; and created a solidarity mural in the Zapatista community of Oventik. She dreams of continuing her socially engaged art practice by making murals in both the US and Mexico, helping build collective consciousness through public creation.

Martize Brooks: Visual artist, painter, sculptor, photographer and actor, Martize is a student at The Art Students League of New York. He spent four years under the mentorship of the now retired curator of the Cleveland Museum of Art, Barbara Kathman; Textile Designer. Martize was also her artist assistant, learning both Craft and Art History from the fruits of her travels. Influenced so strongly by his mentor, Martize is dedicated to applying the wisdom he has gained from her teachings and his work as an artist in Cleveland and New York, to the next generation of young artists and intellectuals. Martize was invited to teach children photography at the Andrew Freeman Center where he lead children around on foot, photographing what they found interesting and valuable, teaching them the meaning of capturing a moment and conveying it to others. He is now a mentor in the Builders of the World homeless youth theatre project, teaching children how to express emotion using creative movement.

YOU WILL NEED: A completed Registration Form. Lunch provided.

For inquiries and, Registration Forms please e-mail Aviva at:


Your donation will enable a child's participation in a project that encourages and validates the use of their creative voice as a tool for expression and communal power building.