The Junior Center is a small community non-profit organization offering hands-on, interactive experiences to learners of all ages.   
Our mission is to cultivate curiosity and creative exploration through the arts and sciences.

We provide programs to children and families through our after school program and camps, our school and community partnerships, and through free and low-cost events at our site. 


Our classes and camps are led by professional teaching artists and science educators who inspire a warm, open and creative environment where students feel encouraged to take risks, explore and try their hand at a myriad of techniques.  

Camp season at the Junior Center of Art & Science begins the first week of June.

This summer we’ll be offering both in-person and online opportunities to create and explore with us.

Please visit our “Summer Camp” page to learn more about outdoor, in-person camps.
Please visit our “Virtual JCAS” page to learn more about our online offerings for Spring and Summer.


Each One, Teach One is inspired by and a celebration of the vision and families that make up the Junior Center community. Created by Bay Area artist AGANA, this work represents that love and light held within our building.

From the artist: As one experiences the mural art installation, one cannot help but to hear the words echoed in conversations “Each One Teach One.” As people walk around and past the mural they read the phrase out loud and talk about the various meanings together as a family. This mural tells a story by sparking dialogue and intergenerational opportunities on a deeper level of real human connection.

The phrase originated in the US during slavery when Africans were denied education, including learning to read. When an enslaved person learned or was taught to read, it became their duty to teach someone else, spawning the phrase “Each one teach one”.Many political prisoners from South Africa held during apartheid (1948-1991) were illiterate. Their mail was censored and reading materials were limited. The inmates used the term, “each one, teach one” as a battle cry to ensure everyone in the movement was educated.
“Each One Teach One” as also a philosophy means that if you can do something, you can teach another person to do it as well. No teaching experience is required. 

To the lead artist Agana, her children have been her greatest teachers and she continues to live by the phrase as a part of her legacy as an artist. Being a mother has taught her how to see the world new again and experience everything for the first time again with her children

Painted on the left side is Agana’s 2 year old son Domingo playing a drum while drawing and taking notes with a pencil behind one ear.  Next to him we have the Lake Merritt duck directly next to the duck feeding station. Alicia Cruz painted in the middle of the mural has been providing mental health services to youth in the Bay Area for 20 years. As an educator she created community school marches for students to learn about the history and impact white privilege has had in our lives. She wanted to spark a dialogue in families beyond the hashtag #blacklivesmatter and really try to connect with what it means to be an ally and live in solidarity with marginalized communities. In her crown the picket signs read, “Black Lives Matter”, “No one is free till the children are free”, “Me too!”, “Ni Una Menos” “Clean Energy” “Our Voices Matter”.  These powerful movements and statements were a part of a collective process of creative input from the Junior Art and science center youth, staff and lead artist Agana. To the right, Gary the famous fifty year old turtle has been painted to honor his tremendous contributions of making so many people happy so very happy, we cannot wait to show Gary that he has been painted on a mural 50x his size.


We’re incredibly excited to partner with Jesse Byrd from Jesse B Creative to offer a young writer’s camp for children ages 8-10 year olds.

During this one-week experience students will learn the elements of story design including – character development world development, and the arch of a story. Working with professionals in the field, students will create and design their very own children’s book about Lake Merritt to be published and made available to the public!

Limited spots available – sign up today!

Want a chance to meet the artist and hear one of his books? Join us on Feb 25 and Mar 25 for an Artist meet and greet with Jesse Byrd. Sign up here.

This project was made possible by a generous grant from the City of Oakland’s Cultural Funding Grant Program.

We have made the careful decision to close our center for public hours until further notice.  We continue to engage with families through our online programs and limited in-person offerings – please browse our site to learn more.

We hope you all take good care.
In community,
The Junior Center Team

Questions? Contact us at [email protected] and someone from our team will contact you soon!