Raising Connected, Happy, Successful Kids through Art

child holding adult handLearn simple and practical art therapy-based tools to help children and teens understand and express their emotions, communicate nonverbally when words aren’t working, build connections with others, develop problem-solving skills, confront fears and anxiety, and much more. Engage in hands-on art activities to promote creative problem solving and inspire the development of novel ideas for addressing challenging behaviors at home or in therapeutic settings. This workshop is for anyone with a child in their life, personally or professionally. It is intended for adults only.

This workshop is based off the 2019 National Parenting Products Association award-winning book, The Innovative Parent: Raising Connected, Happy, Successful Kids through Art, (Ohio University/Swallow Press, Spring 2019), by art therapist Erica Curtis, LMFT, ATR-BC and Ping Ho, MA, MPH, Founder & Director of UCLArts & Healing. The book will be available for purchase at the workshop for $20. And attendees can enter a raffle to receive a free book!

Click here to watch a brief, animated video about the book, which offers examples of the kinds of tools that will be shared in the program.

The program is designed to offer creative tools for:

  • Redirecting and shifting energy in children

  • Getting attention without having to use one’s voice

  • Establishing boundaries and engaging cooperation playfully

  • Communicating nonverbally, when words aren’t working

  • Supporting emotional safety and academic effort with non-judgmental language

  • Responding to difficult emotions or traumatic stress reactions

  • Facilitating interpersonal problem solving and decision making

  • Building self-care into daily life


Saturday, June 15, 2019

Can't join us on the 15th? Reserve a spot in our fall workshop on September 14th!


10:00 to 11:30 am



Add CEs for this program.


Erica Curtis, LMFT, ATR-BC
Ping Ho, MA, MPH


Marine Park Auditorium
1406 Marine Street
Santa Monica, CA 90405

additional information:

Erica Curtis, LMFT, ATR-BC is a Board-Certified Art Therapist and Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist. Erica has over 15 years of experience and education in integrative approached to health and well-being. Formerly an instructor in the Loyola Marymount University Department of Marriage and Family Therapy with a specialization in art therapy, she now serves as their admissions consultant and maintains a therapy practice in San Juan Capistrano. Erica has served multiple terms on the board of directors of the American Art Therapy Association, is a past president of the Southern California Art Therapy Association, and was formerly clinical director at the Help Group, a widely respected Los Angeles non-profit agency. She has lectured widely for institutions and organizations including UCSD, USC, UCLA, SOKA and Kaiser Permanente. In addition, she serves as a mental health and relationship expert for articles, appearing in more than 50 media outlets including: USA Today, Boston Globe, EHow Family, PBS, and Women’s World Magazine, to name a few. Erica serves as an expert for her profession’s governing board, consulting on standard of care in disciplinary cases brought against therapists. She also supervises art therapy interns. Erica is the author of The Innovative Parent: Raising Connected, Happy, Successful Kids through Art.

Ping Ho, MA, MPH, is Founder and Director of UCLArts & Healing, an organizational member of the UCLA Collaborative Centers for Integrative Medicine, of which Ping is a steering committee member and was founding administrator. She was also founding administrator for the UCLA Cousins Center for Psychoneuroimmunology, which led to the privilege of writing for Norman Cousins and co-writing the professional autobiography of George F. Solomon, M.D., founder of the field. She has a BA in psychology with honors from Stanford—where she was appointed to spearhead the still-thriving Health Improvement Program for faculty and staff, an MA in counseling psychology with specialization in exercise physiology from the University of California, Santa Barbara, and an MPH in community health sciences from UCLA School of Public Health. Ping is a member of the council of advisers for the Academic Collaborative for Integrative Health and associate editor for the Creative Arts Therapies section of the Journal of Complementary and Alternative Medicine. She developed the Certificate Program in Social Emotional Arts (SEA) and the Medical SEA Program for any population, setting or budget. In addition, she co-developed and served as principal investigator for the evidence-based program, Beat the Odds®: Social and Emotional Skill Building Delivered in a Framework of Drumming.  She is co-author, with Erica Curtis, of The Innovative Parent: Raising Connected, Happy, Successful Kids through Art (Ohio University/Swallow Press, March 2019).
This course meets qualifications for 1.5 hours of continuing education (CE) credit for psychologists, LCSWs, MFTs, LEPs, LPCCs, and RNs. CEs can be requested during the registration process for an additional $20.

UCLArts & Healing is approved by the California Psychological Association to provide continuing professional education for psychologists. UCLArts & Healing maintains responsibility for this program and its content.  

Refund policy: In order to keep our programs affordable yet self-sustaining, we regret that we are unable to offer refunds for cancellation; however, we are happy to provide you with credit good for one year from the date of the program toward the next offering of the same program or a different one. Credit applied toward a program with higher registration fees will require payment of the balance. In addition, credit may be applied toward purchase of curriculum materials for any program. Unused fees after one year would then be tax deductible to the fullest extent of the law because no goods or services would have been received for them.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: Those who attend this workshop in full and complete the appropriate evaluation form will receive CE credits. Please note that credit will only be granted to those who attend the entire workshop. Those arriving more than 15 minutes after the start time or leaving before the workshop is completed will not receive CE credit.

learning objectives for ces:

  1. Describe one way to connect with a child or teen nonverbally through art.

  2. Explain one art activity that can be used to facilitate problem solving in children.

  3. State one way to help children express their feelings through art making.

For directions, click here. Parking is readily available at the large lot and on the street adjacent to the park.