pencil, clay tool, paint brush and arrow icons above Youth Art Month

Youth Art Month

Youth Art Month HistoryYouth Art Month BenefitsRuth Jansen High School Senior AwardState Flag Program


2021 YAM Information Coming Soon!


Youth Art Month History

  • The Art & Creative Materials Institute (ACMI) created Children’s Art Month in 1961 as an event to emphasize the value to children from participating in visual art education.

  • In 1969 the celebration expanded to include secondary school students, and the Children’s Art Month event officially became known as Youth Art Month.

  • In 1984, ACMI created the non-profit organization The Council for Art Education (CFAE) to advocate for visual art education. CFAE coordinates the Youth Art Month program at the national level.


Youth Art Month Benefits

Youth Art Month exists to:

  1. Recognize art education as a viable factor in the total education curriculum that develops citizens of a global society.

  2. Recognize art is a necessity for the full development of better quality of life for all.

  3. Direct attention to the value of art education for divergent and critical thinking.

  4. Expand art programs in schools and stimulate new art programs.

  5. Encourage commitment to the arts by students, community organizations, and individuals everywhere.

  6. Provide additional opportunities for individuals of all ages to participate in creative art learning.

  7. Increase community, business and governmental support for art education.

  8. Increase community understanding and interest in art and art education through involvement in art exhibits, workshops, and other creative ventures.

  9. Reflect and demonstrate the goals of the National Art Education Association that work toward the improvement of art education at all levels.


Ruth Jansen High School Senior Award 

Each year, a senior high school student from each Area YAM show is selected as that Area’s Ruth Jansen Award winner and given a cash award. The funding for this award is provided by a special memorial trust fund established in memory of Ruth Jansen by her family, friends, and the community. It is given by the Community Foundation of the Verdugos. We are grateful for the support and recognition this has provided for students. There is also a Ruth Jansen Award given to outstanding teachers as well. Read more about Ruth Jansen

CAEA is honored to be able to present a $100 Ruth Jansen award to a high school senior from each CAEA Area whose work was submitted during the annual YAM program.  Below are the 2019 winners.

Northern Area 2020 Ruth Jansen Winner

La Danza Azreca

Artist: Julisa Lopez
Medium: Mixed Media — watercolor and colored pencil

Teacher: Doris Valdez
School: Capital Christian School, Sacramento


Central Area 2020 Ruth Jansen Winner

drawing of a glass bottle wrapped in cloth and thin ropeTime in a Bottle

Artist: Oliviah Gonzales
Medium: Prismacolor pencils
Teacher: Tamyra Tomlinson
School: Dinuba High School, Dinuba

smiling teenage girl wearing glasses

Oliviah Gonzales


 smiling adult woman wearing glasses

Tamyra Tomlinson




San Diego Area 2020 Ruth Jansen Winner

Palm Drive

Artist: Tommy Hughes
Medium: Digital illustration
Teacher: Alison Behr
School: Pacific Ridge School, Carlsbad

 smiling teenage boy

Tommy Hughes


 smiling adult woman

Alison Behr





State Flag Program

Congratulations to Michael Gaither, Winner of the 2020 Youth Art Month Flag Contest for California!

Student: Michael Gaither
Grade: 12
School: Enterprise High School (Redding, CA)
Teacher: Tamara Watson

female teacher and male student smiling

Tamara Watson (left) and Michael Gaither (right)




Sargent Art

Special Thanks to SARGENT ART for Supporting Youth Art Month in California!



CAEA Student Artwork Rubric

In the absence of cross-committee norming, rubrics yield subjective results based on each judge’s unique interpretation of the rubric criteria.

It is expected that the CAEA Student Artwork Rubric will be used when judging all YAM show and State YAM Flag artwork entries.

CAEA Student Artwork Rubric alt


CAEA Student Photo Release Form

Each year, the CAEA website displays photos of YAM winners and their teachers next to the image of each winning artwork. To enable CAEA to do this, this form needs to be completed, signed, and sent to the CAEA YAM Chair ([email protected]) by parents of YAM winners, along with a photo of the winner.

CAEA Student Photo Release Form (Word Doc) alt
CAEA Student Photo Release Form alt