Art-loving kids will love Oakland Public Library’s free, drop-in art sessions with MOCHA. As of November 2022, Berkeley’s library system also offers art workshops.
Museum of Children’s Art (MOCHA) is partnering with Oakland Public Library to offer free art workshops in 10 locations across the city continuing through Spring, 2024. Kids of all ages can drop in to the sessions to learn from MOCHA educators. The workshops last 90 minutes and all the supplies are provided.
I took my kids to a recent MOCHA at the Library session at Golden Gate Branch. The MOCHA educator led the group through a project all about lines. She explained how lines can intersect to create new shapes, can be different thicknesses, or be used to make patterns or tonal differences. She offered paper, markers, paint, and oil pastels to the children and asked them to get creative. The group was made up of grade-schoolers and preteens, even some parents participated—this event is geared to kids 5 to 15 years old.
My kids really enjoyed the freedom to make their own designs. They also had access to new-to-them art supplies like oil pastels and glitter paints. The instructor was very patient, encouraging, and available to offer suggestions or answer questions. My older child focused on perfecting one piece of art, while my toddler painted quickly and then wandered to a different part of the library. The drop-in structure makes it easy to come and go.
The Bottom Line
MOCHA in the Library art sessions are easy to enjoy because they are fun, free, and drop-in friendly. Kids can complete the project or follow their own creativity to make a piece of art. MOCHA instructors are fabulous with kids and help the children strengthen their connection to art. These sessions are low-key, but still interesting because the creative possibilities are endless. I think these workshops are an ideal activity to fill the after-school hours before dinnertime.
Schedule and & Oakland Branch Locations (Fall 23-Spring 2024)
Program runs through June 2024 (No Programming on Official Library Holidays)
- Brookfield Branch: Tuesdays 4 pm-5:30 pm
- Asian Branch: Tuesdays 3:30 pm-5 pm
- Golden Gate Branch: 3:30-5 pm
- Main (Children’s Room) Branch: Wednesdays 2 pm-3:30 pm
- 81st Ave Branch: Wednesdays 2 pm-3:30 pm
- Martin Luther King Branch: Tuesdays 1:30-3 pm
Thursdays: Elmhurst Branch: Thursdays at 2-3:30 pm
Fridays: West Oakland Branch: Fridays at 3:30-5 pm
Saturdays: Melrose Branch: Saturdays at noon-1:30 pm
Schedule and & Berkeley Branch Locations (as of October 2023)
Thursdays: THP South Branch: Thursdays at 3:30-5 pm
Fridays: Central Branch: Fridays at 3:30 pm-5 pm
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