We believe every kid needs a safe space where they can tinker with materials, play-test budding ideas and dream big! At Kid Lab, it’s our mission to facilitate experiences that give children and their caregivers opportunities to play, learn and create together. We do this through arts education, community partnerships and open labs designed for creative play.
What we do and why we do it
Research shows that giving children open-ended materials (like sticks, clay, paint, cloth, wood) builds confidence, competency, independence and authentic expression. It can also help children avoid boredom as they begin seeing the creative potential in everything. In short, it fosters imagination! At Kid Lab, we offer this kind of learning space for kids of all ages. We know firsthand how work, play and learning are virtually synonymous when it comes to brain development in children. While we offer demonstrations and ideas about how to use the materials, we get excited when kids go above and beyond and let their imaginations dictate the process and product.
We set up Kid Lab to operate as a play space + art studio. In the play space, you’ll find a cozy couch and bookshelves with Discovery Boxes, tinker baskets and other play invitations for you and your little ones. In the art studio, there are work tables and a big assortment of materials and tools to choose from. We hope the whole family will be inspired to play, learn and create in the Lab together!
WHO WE ARE
Kid Lab is directed by Shannon Newby & Kristelle Horton
With a background in education and art, Shannon has taught art in multiple states including Etsy Labs in Brooklyn, the Portland Children’s Museum in Oregon and Marbles Kids Museum here in Raleigh. Throughout the year, she works with local schools to design large scale art projects through the United Arts Council’s Artist in Schools program. Putting together Kid Lab has been an exciting, personal pursuit since having her own children 5 years ago. More about Shannon’s artwork can be found at www.newbyart.com
Prior to joining Kid Lab, Kristelle worked as a graphic artist for over 12 years for various local companies. Even before having children, her passion has always been creating things with her hands and playful learning. Now, with two small children, she's expanded her knowledge of play-based education by researching and combining a variety of playful and peaceful philosophies. Joining Shannon in this creative endeavor has been the cumulation of many lifelong dreams come true.