Welcome to

Da Vinci’s Toolbox


A Premier Classical Art Studio Program for Children

(all instruction offered in English)

The Study (2021)
Graphite on paper (8 x 6 inches) by Shaili P., Age 12
Academy of Art of Highland Park/Da Vinci’s Toolbox © AAHP 2021

Fallen Flashlight (2021)
Graphite on paper (6 x 4 inches) by Shifra R., Age 12
Academy of Art of Highland Park/Da Vinci’s Toolbox © AAHP 2021

Bundle of Slippers (2021)
Wax color pencil on paper (4 x 6 inches) by Aarya P., Age 8
Academy of Art of Highland Park/Da Vinci’s Toolbox © AAHP 2021

A Quack in the Mirror (2021)
Charcoal on paper (8.5 x 11 inches) by Aditi M., Age 10
Academy of Art of Highland Park/Da Vinci’s Toolbox © AAHP 2021

Panda’s Self-Portrait (2021)
Charcoal on paper (9 x 12 inches) by Lasya S., Age 10
Academy of Art of Highland Park/Da Vinci’s Toolbox © AAHP 2021

Da Vinci’s Toolbox (DVT) is a premier, online art studio program offering classical training for youngsters ages 8-12. 

Through this program, a young studio practitioner learns, develops and refines skills and sensibilities as an artist/designer/maker/builder. 

When the young practitioner turns 13, they will graduate into the Portfolio Prep Program Online (P3.O), the AAHP’s honors studio program for teens.

A Deep Practice, not an Activity

Working with time-honored, Western approaches to art as a form of inquiry, the DVT learning experience lets the youngster develop creativity through exploratory, yet disciplined practice, as opposed to a chance activity for a rainy day. 

Online studio begins Wednesday, September 8th 2021.


1. What will my youngster learn at DVT’s online studio?

Our students begin with inspiration, then move on to observation, interpretation, and construction. They learn to utilize specialized tools and instrumentation, and come to understand new design and construction as a process all on its own.

2. Who will be working with my youngster?

DVT is directed by Aaron Scott Balavram, AAHP Assistant Director, and a veteran of the AAHP’s teaching staff for more than 15 years. Mr. Balavram also serves as DVT’s Chief Instructor. He trains a highly dedicated team of Online Safety Moderators/Studio Mentors (OSM2s) who serve as his assistants. These teaching assistants  help guide and ensure our young practitioners’ online safety and comfort, and support their love of learning. Mr. Balavram develops the DVT curriculum and pedagogy alongside AAHP founder, Director, A.E. Soto-Canino.

3. What is the program structure?
Class Slot Schedule: Classes run every week, on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, after school. All classes are on Zoom.  Class Duration: Each class runs for 1.5 hours, starting at various times throughout the afternoon and evening. For the full DVT Class Schedule, click here Makeups: Students can easily do makeup classes by arranging to attend another day on the posted class slot schedule.  Enrollment by Subscription: Practitioners are enrolled in DVT through a monthly subscription, which they can enter, leave and re-enter at any time.
4. How long will it take my youngster to create the next Mona Lisa? 😉

It is very important to remember that studio practice is just that…a deep practice. It is not something that can be simply learned in an afternoon, a month, or even a year. As with all classical training in any art form, be it dance, singing, music, etc., studio requires a brainy and emotional commitment. 

Parents can expect to see a notable difference in the works that youngsters create on their own, compared to the works they create in their studio classes. But over time, with continuing practice, this difference will diminish and eventually dissolve. What matters most is the ongoing exposure to the craft of the artist and designer, and then through actual practice.

5. Are art classes really effective in an online setting?

Ours are! Yes. Absolutely. Please look closely at the photos above. All of these remarkable works were completely developed in our online studio. 

A drawing cannot lie. 

We remain committed to strong teaching and mentoring offline or online. Our community of artists has been thriving online. At DVT, we do not simply use these online platforms as a substitute for in-person classes; we use them to enrich our teaching even further. 

The most important part of the learning space, of course, is the construction process itself, and the craft command that drives it, all of which are, and remain, invisible. But that process cannot possibly me bonk if the outcomes display this high level of excellence in invention, integrity and elegance. This, along with the smiles on these artists’ faces throughout, and after class, is material evidence of their joy in their strong learning and practice online!

Registration Open Year-Round!

Have your child enter and leave at your convenience.
Of course, committed practice is best practice.

Prepare your Youngster for Classes in 3 Easy Steps:

  1. Schedule your youngster for a 1.5 hr Free Introductory Class!
  2. After your youngster completes their Free Introductory Class, you will be invited to subscribe them to DVT.
  3. Once you have activated a subscription for your youngster, you will need to review your Welcome Kit, which will include a list of required materials and technologies needed to start classes. Once you purchase your youngster’s materials and help them to set up their very own home studio space, they will be ready to go!

Seating is limited! Don’t miss out on this opportunity! 

Sign up your youngster NOW for

Da Vinci’s Toolbox!