Teacher Lab

The Teacher Lab is a three-part immersive and collaborative professional development program for in service educators. The Teacher Lab provides support and tools for teachers to develop socially engaged and relevant art projects for the classroom using artistic strategies to respond to issues of importance within a local community.

The Delaware Contemporary looking for passionate teachers who wish to shake up their practice and make an impact in the lives of their students and school communities. Interdisciplinary teaching teams of art and social studies/civics are encouraged to apply.

Application deadline: June 30
Acceptance notice:
July 8
Non-refundable program fee payment deadline:
July 25 (upon acceptance)
Program fee: $200

Who can apply?

  • Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey and Pennsylvania Public School art teachers, interdisciplinary teaching teams of art, and social studies/civics teachers are encouraged to apply.

  • As this program requires work to be enacted in the classroom, applicants must currently be assigned to teach in a school for the 2019-20 academic year. A two-year classroom teaching experience is preferred but not mandatory.

Why the Teacher Lab?


  • Interested in integrating contemporary art into your teaching and learning.

  • Motivated to critically engage your students with the art and ideas of our time.

  • Excited to activate the community and engage students in new ways.

  • Open to experimentation and being challenged to reflect on, and push, your current teaching practice.


  • Make The Delaware Contemporary your haven, your studio, and your laboratory while you develop a contemporary art-based classroom project. The Delaware Contemporary can help you identify resources needed to achieve success.

  • Investigate the engaging qualities of contemporary art, contemporary teaching and learning, the intricacies of the creative process, and inquiry in creative pursuits.

  • Join a dynamic community and influence conversation about contemporary pedagogy.

  • Deepen your students engagement with contemporary art through inquiry-based encounters with art objects.

  • Create an innovative curriculum to share with our community of educators.


  • The Teacher Lab is offered at a low cost of $200.00 (non-refundable).

  • As a full and active participant in the three-part program, you will receive a certificate of completion, and have the opportunity to gain professional development hours through your district. (Credit must be approved by your district.)

  • You will also receive priority booking for a free, educator-led field trip (with free busing) to The Delaware Contemporary.

How is the program structured?

The Teacher Lab is designed and led by a talented teaching team of artists and educators who see their work in terms of both contemporary art and contemporary curriculum. Invited artists and educators also support the arc of the Teacher Lab during the year. As you return to the classroom to implement your projects, the Teacher Lab continues with two follow-up seminars at The Delaware Contemporary. This is the opportunity to continue your professional growth while bridging the experiences you have in the museum with what is happening in your classroom. Each Teacher Lab participant will receive one free field trip with busing provided. During the Summer Residency, teachers will plan field trips in consultation with The Delaware Contemporary staff and teaching artists so that it can align with classroom projects. The Teacher Lab staff may conduct classroom observations. The semester culminates with a share-out critique around your projects.


Monday, August 5 - Thursday, August 8, 2019 9 AM - 3 PM

The program begins with an immersive, four-day residency at The Delaware Contemporary designed to be a time and space for you to recharge as a creative practitioner and dive head first into your socially engaging, identity discovering, and collaborative projects with the museum as your resource. This program is designed to help you investigate, plan, incubate, and implement innovative, contemporary curriculum. Sessions include exercises focused on integrating contemporary art, collaborative social projects, guest artists, preparing work for student exhibitions and overall presentation, and independent and group work around your individual curriculum projects. There will be dedicated time to discuss presenting student work. Light refreshments will be available.


Saturday, January 25, 2020 9:30 AM - 11:30 PM

The goal-setting and professional development process is an ongoing, recursive process where teachers reflect on current professional practices, identify professional growth goals, and establish a professional development plan to attain those goals. In this first Teacher Lab Exchange, you will have a chance to express challenges, achievements, and goals faced since the Teacher Lab residency. Participants will continue to work on personal development as one digs deeper into new skills to take back into the classrooms. Light refreshments will be available.


Saturday, May 2, 2020 9:30 AM - 11:30 PM

As you plan to put the textbooks away and say goodbye to your students for the summer, we hope that you can make it back for this final Teacher Lab experience. During this Teacher Lab Exchange Part 2, participants will take part in a collaborative conversation consisting of helpful feedback, engaging critiques, accomplishments, goal-setting activities, and motivational talks that we hope will transcend to the classroom. Light refreshments will be available.

Questions? Contact education department: education@decontemporary.org