Teaching Artist Training Lab

The Washington State Teaching Artist Training (TAT) Lab team believes that reflective practices and thoughtful planning through a social justice lens are central to effective learning opportunities for both adults and youth. In response to the layers of uprisings, COVID, school closures, and financial obstacles, TAT Lab is redesigning our 2020-2021 program to align with health and safety guidelines, respond to the needs of arts educators, and continue our work to dismantle pervasive systemic racism.

While there are many unknowns about the content and structure of next year’s TAT Lab, what we do know is that TAT Lab will continue to work for equitable and antiracist arts education throughout Washington State. The 2020-2021 model, still under construction, will feature some key differences from past years:

1. Content will be offered as a series of independent, thematic workshops.
2. Workshops will be responsive and supportive to what the work requires of us in the context of these specific times.
3. Educators interested in participating will be able to register for workshops throughout the year on a rolling basis.
4. Program content and registration will be announced in early Fall.
5. Workshops will be remote, for at least part of the year.

Additionally, TAT Lab staff and faculty are actively evaluating TAT Lab programming and administration through a critical lens of race and social justice, and are making changes in order to foster a more equitable, diverse, responsive, and inclusive program.

Please click here to follow us on Facebook. To receive program announcements, including registration information when it becomes available, please join our mailing list by emailing tatlaboutreach@gmail.com. For administrative questions, please email TATLab@PNB.org.

In community,
TAT Lab Faculty & Staff

Program Philosophy

TAT Lab is based on the philosophy that reflective practice and thoughtful planning are essential to effective educational experiences, and a key building block for partnering with schools and classroom teachers. TAT Lab defines teaching artists as individuals who are both artists and educators: they are professional artists who are dedicated to arts education as an integral part of their professional practice; they cultivate skills as educators in concert with their skills as artists.

TAT Lab focuses on arts education in K-12 public schools. Working to ensure all students receive high quality arts education as part of basic education, with teaching artists playing a significant role, is core to the program philosophy. TAT Lab participants also work outside of K-12 schools; there is no one way to be a teaching artist. TAT Lab curriculum covers foundational concepts that support good teaching practice in a wide range of settings.

TAT Lab Curriculum

TAT Lab curriculum is informed by four key questions:

What unique qualities do teaching artists bring to a classroom?

What are “reflective practice” and “thoughtful planning” and why are they important?

How can we teach arts skills along with higher order thinking skills and habits of mind?

How do we create safe, inclusive and effective learning environments for all students?

With these questions in mind, the TAT Lab will address both philosophical and nuts-and-bolts aspects of teaching artist practice, with a focus on instructional design: developing and articulating clear arts learning objectives and assessment strategies.

Join the Lab to:

Learn about best practices in arts education through in-person workshops, reading assignments and discussion

Develop strong and effective learning plans

Receive ongoing, individualized support from teaching artist mentors and peers

Learn how to collaborate with K-12 teachers and use state standards to support your work

Connect with a community of dedicated teaching artists

Gain skills to assess student learning in the arts

Understand the role of social justice within the world of arts education

Engage with 21st Century Skills and Habits of Mind

Program History & Partners

We are grateful to the organizations that jointly created the original version of the TAT Lab in 2005: Denver Center for the Performing Arts, the Shakespeare Theatre Company in D.C., and the Seattle Repertory Theatre. We are especially grateful to the Seattle Rep for their role in evolving the model to serve all artistic disciplines, and partnering with the Washington State Arts Commission to develop the current statewide program, which was launched in 2011. After three successful years and 100 graduates, Seattle Children’s Theatre became the hosting partner in 2014, joining other founding partners: the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Book-It Repertory Theatre, and Arts Corps. Current faculty bios are available here.


Please contact Ann Marie at PNB with any questions about the TAT Lab program or application process.