Workshops and Professional Development » Young Audiences of Oregon & SW Washington

Workshops and Professional Development

Every month, we offer a variety of professional development opportunities that aim to address both parts of the teaching artist experience: artmaking and education. These events cover a variety of important topics for teaching artists, from current educational trends to logistical and health concerns, to the ongoing practice of engaging every student in the room.

  • Events marked PLC refer to professional learning communities, which have teaching artists engaging in a given topic in a peer education format.
  • Teaching Artist Studio workshops are a part of a year-long program series of experiential workshops which are also available to the public.
  • All of our professional development is offered without charge to artists on our roster. If cost is a barrier to your participation, email to inquire about our scholarships.
  • Update

    Applications for Teaching Artist Studio 2020-21 Cohort are expected to be live in mid August. Stay tuned!

    Past 19-20 Workshops

    Wednesday, June 17

    Copyright Law for Teaching Artists 101

    Online Workshop

    Teaching artists straddle the realms of art and education. What legal systems are in place to help us protect the work we generate as artists, and the teaching we do—in real time and in virtual arenas? In this workshop, an attorney with Oregon Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts will talk about the basics of copyright law, intellectual property, fair use, copyright procedures, and licensed use. A brief Q & A session will follow the presentation.

    Please note that this workshop is provided as a non-profit educational tool only, and does not constitute legal advice. The speaker will not provide individual or personalized consultation on these topics.

    Saturday, June 6

    Self Care for Makers and Teachers

    Online Workshop

    Our art practices often require demands on differing parts of ourselves. Teaching multiple classes a day can exhaust us. As independent contractors, we don’t always have the resources—or community— to build the most healthful practice in our studios or classrooms. In this workshop, we will look at one mode to understand how to empower ourselves in self-care: the Alexander Technique (AT). After an introduction to the history and science of the AT, participants will learn the basic principles and engage in an embodied activity. The Alexander Technique instruction will offer a way to deal with the individual challenges of self-care we each face.

    Monday, May 11

    Trauma-Informed Care for Teaching Artists 201

    Online Workshop

    To approach our work in a trauma-informed way, we must first tend to ourselves through critical reflection and self-care. Many of the tools we use for this can also be explored with our students. In this follow up to Trauma-Informed Care for Teaching Artists, we will explore ways that art-making can support all of us—teachers and students—with some hands-on practice. This workshop will introduce participants to the concepts of parallel processing and vicarious trauma as well as to activities they can use for their own self-reflection and also with students. UPDATE: This workshop will involve a deeper exploration of challenging behaviors in the classroom, with teachers, parents, and administrations using the principles of trauma-informed care.

    Saturday, May 2, 2020

    Arts and Science: Exploring the Depths of Integration

    Online Workshop

    The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) hold a lot of exciting possibilities for integrating the arts into fields of science, engineering and technology. Where are there natural connections between the sciences and art? How can we as artists use what we best know to support student development in science practices and concepts? How can we recognize when our integration is skimming the surface or when it’s serving to activate student inquiry? In this workshop, participants will become more familiar with the architecture of the NGSS and begin to uncover compelling ways their art form can partner with the work of the classroom teacher in the sciences.

    Thursday, April 23, 2020

    Limiting Legal Liabilities as a Teaching Artist

    Online Workshop

    As teaching artists, we are often working as independent contractors. Our work brings us as visitors into the classroom– and also into community centers, arts organizations, places of faith, and more. So how can we set ourselves up for success? In this workshop, two attorneys with Oregon Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts will talk about liability considerations as a teaching artist, and ways to limit liability in your business. Topics will include limiting liability through business entity formation and contracts, liability insurance, and practical tips on ways to limit legal exposure as a teaching artist. A brief Q & A session will follow their presentation.

    Sunday, February 16, 2020

    Deepening Inquiry: A Questioning Lab

    A Teaching Artist Studio Workshop

    How can teaching artists help students own their learning? What kinds of questions lead to rich observations and ideas, and strengthen metacognitive skills? How can we use questioning to help students best encounter and discuss works from masters and from fellow students? In this workshop, we will use artworks at the museum to explore ways to structure open questions that build student engagement, provoke meaningful inquiry, and assess for understanding. Participants will learn questioning strategies and will have an opportunity to put them into practice in live time with other teaching artists.

    Friday, January 17, 2020

    Creativity and Core Standards

    A Teaching Artist Studio Workshop

    Where are there creative opportunities to help build skills teachers are asked to address in other content areas? How can the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) relate to the arts? Investigate methods for incorporating these standards in your lesson design, and get tools to uncover natural connections to concepts and skills in your art discipline.

    Tuesday, January 7, 2020

    Taxes and Finances for the Independent Contractor

    Income tax issues for the Creative Professional. Working from a prior PowerPoint presentation, Michael Davidson and Carol Wild will discuss tax law for both the freelance and W2 employee creative professional.They will cover interesting and entertaining issues not encountered by the ordinary taxpayer and address questions arising from the floor. Time at the end for a Q & A. They will NOT address specific tax issues relating to a person’s personal tax return – only questions that have application to the audience at large.

    Saturday, December 7, 2019

    Aligning Activities and Ages

    A Teaching Artist Studio Workshop

    Why do my students never get through this activity? How can I translate my expertise in young children to middle schoolers? Why is no one focused?? Explore the relationship of developmental stages in a child’s life to the way they interact with various prompts and activities in an arts classroom, and find pathways to translating what works in your art form for different levels of learners.

    Sunday, November 24, 2019

    Racial Inequalities in the Arts Classroom and Inclusive Arts Practices

    A Teaching Artist Studio Workshop

    This workshop aims to surface structural oppressions, micro-aggressions, and power dynamics in the context of arts education, as well as to give participants space outside the classroom to consider how they might address those occurrences when they happen in the field. We will look at the history of patterns of racism and exclusion in Portland and Oregon and work to name and interrupt inequities in the classroom, and other environments. This workshop focuses on a radical, grassroots perspective, rather than a white-centered or top-down perspective. An outline of activities is available on request, and the presenter can be reached for questions at

    Monday, November 11, 2019

    Teaching Multilingual Learners

    This half-day workshop “clinic” will provide teaching artists with information they can use to make alterations to their lesson planning, assessments, and/or facilitation style to better reach students who are still learning English. The workshop will include a history of strategies of working with multilingual students, interactive work, and application time for integrating best practices and strategies.

    Saturday, October 26, 2019

    Classroom Management for the Teaching Artist

    A Teaching Artist Studio Workshop

    Grow your confidence in managing your arts class with hands on tools and tips from a classroom teacher! This workshop will be serving up practical strategies a visiting artist can use to build community, increase student engagement, signal for attention, partner with the classroom teacher and provide just the right amount of structure for students to learn and feel supported.

    Tuesday, Oct 22, 2019

    PLC: Optimizing In-School Performances

    What are key components to a highly engaged in-school performance? What are the important elements to consider in designing the performance, communicating with schools, and follow up? Are there areas of consistent difficulty? How can teaching artists support the “how” of each other’s work while maintaining the richness of their individual programs?

    Saturday, September 21, 2019

    Trauma-Informed Care for Teaching Artists 101

    In this introductory training participants will learn about complex trauma, its relationship to systemic oppression, and impacts on health and behaviors. They will examine how trauma is expressed through behaviors in order to begin to recognize and respond to people in ways that resist re-traumatization. While the information has a wide reach, it’s structured to focus on working with the K-12 public school population as a guest artist.

  • The Teaching Artist Studio is a project supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts

  • To find out more about how National Endowment for the Arts grants impact individuals and communities, visit

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