Arts-Based Collaborative Programs for Teachers 


2018-2019 Arts Learning Lab: Story in STEAM 

A FREE professional learning program for educator teams wanting an outside-of-the-box experience with ongoing support and mentorship available throughout the school year. 


The 2018-2019 Arts Learning Lab (ALL): Story in STEAM is a FREE professional learning program for 60 educators across educator teams of arts specialists, teaching artists, classroom teachers, and administrators from the tristate, 16-county Chattanooga region. Educator teams will receive year-long support and mentorship towards collaborating on a STEAM-based, arts-integrated unit targeting at least one objective in arts and literacy.


Instructional Design

Design instruction using out-of-the- box techniques for planning  STEAM-based, arts-integrated unit plans that are standards-based, embrace cultural and community assets, and connect with learning objectives in arts and literacy. 


Arts Knowledge & Skill

Build arts content knowledge and skill, activate STEAM-based classroom strategies, and equip your teaching toolbox with facilitation techniques that support student-driven instruction and problem-based learning.



Collaborate with colleagues and engage in a  professional learning community that provides ongoing support, actively brainstorms, shares resources, encourages creativity and innovation, and contextualizes ideas with students.    

Arts Learning Lab Activity Overview: 

Educator teams must fully participate in each ALL activity. Up to 48 professional development hours by participating in each of the following: 

 More details about ALL activities below: 


4-Day Summer Learning Lab, UTC Challenger STEM Learning Center

summer lab

Educator teams will pick one of the following tracks based on the grade level(s) they teach: 

  • Elementary Track: July 10-13, 2018
  • Secondary Track: July 17-20, 2018

28 professional development hours are available during the summer workshop. 

Between 9am and 4pm over the course of 4 days, participants will be guided through characteristics of STEAM-based, arts-integrated unit planning with the goal of helping each teacher refine their curriculum design process that balances their own pedagogical philosophy, student needs, standards and objectives, and cultivating a “makerspace” culture in their classrooms. Educator teams will:

  • Unpack the “A” in STEAM and learn how to design authentic arts learning experiences aligned with outcomes from another content area.
  • Explore varying makerspaces including structured, varied, and device-dependent learning environments
  • Observe students engaging STEAM-based problems in a series of makerspace learning environments during the 2018 Youth University STEAM Academies. 
  • Brainstorm how to create a makerspace in their current classrooms beginning with available community and cultural assets.
  • Develop their own unit planning process conducive for a STEAM-based, arts integrated unit at their school.
  • Strategize unit ideas to implement before the 4th quarter of the 2018-2019 academic year.
  • Activate and respond to ideas within a professional learning community.


Planning Clinics or Arts-Based Collaborative Mentor Meetings, Details TBA

planning clinic

Educator teams will attend either 2 Planning Clinics (TBA) and schedule 2 Arts-Based Collaborative Mentor Meetings at their school. All Planning Clinics and Arts-Based Collaborative Mentor Meetings will occur between the 1st and 3rd quarter of the 2018-2019 academic year. Up to 8 professional development hours are available. 

 Planning Clinics provide an opportunity for educator teams to fine tune their unit plans and engage their professional learning community for feedback and ideas. Educator teams will:

  • Reconnect with their professional learning community.
  • Explore additional strategies for their unit plans.
  • Brainstorm unit implementation with other colleagues.
  • Troubleshoot documentation issues/concerns for collecting samples of student work.
  • Develop action steps with Arts-Based Collaborative mentors to assist educator teams with moving forward with unit plans.


Celebration for ALL Event and Unit Upload Party, UTC Library, May 2, 2019


A reception celebrating the work of ALL participants during Arts in Our Schools Month. 12 professional development hours are available for attending and uploading units to the TAC lesson plan database.

 The Celebration for ALL Event serves as a “family reunion” of educator teams and provides an opportunity to celebrate everyone’s accomplishments. Educator teams will:

  • Share samples of student work.
  • Present ideas implemented from the Arts Learning Lab.
  • Reflect on their experience.
  • Celebrate everyone’s accomplishments!