Resource Spotlight: Wachovia Education Resource Center

ArtsRising is always on the lookout for resources that make the jobs of educators.  Today we’d like to share some information about a resource in Philadelphia that can vastly improve the practice of core content teachers as well as art teachers across the region.

The Wachovia Teacher Resource Center is a gem of a space that you must visit if you are an educator.  Located in the Philadelphia Museum of Art’s Perelman building, the Resource Center and its staff are available to educators during museum hours (Tuesday-Sunday 10:00am-5:00pm), which is perfect timing for teachers.

The Center’s Director, Steven Wills, pointed out that his staff is made up of former educators who have taught in Philadelphia and the surrounding area.  That means the people helping teachers know exactly what teachers need to successfully integrate the visual arts into core curriculum classes.

Recently, ArtsRising coordinated a professional development session led by Steven at Stetson Middle School for its staff.  One teacher shared with us his positive feedback from the session:

The most important aspect of teaching is creating opportunities for students to be innovative thinkers to solve real world problems. The professional development, led by Steve Wills of the Wachovia Education Center, directly addressed helping students  to think creatively through art. The workshop provided me with resources and ideas I can't wait to share with my class. Also, I look forward to becoming a regular at the Education Resource Center. The PD was informative and inspiring.

Christopher Devers, 8th grade Literacy Teacher

We also can't wait for students to benefit from the training Mr. Devers was able to receive!

Some of the incredible services and resources the Resource Center provide include:

  • Lesson Plans by Request-  Give the staff a lesson objective and a week’s advance notice and they will create an entire lesson plan for you, aligned to PA state standards and complete with any material resources you may need.  They also have many lesson plans on file you can save to a flash drive or photo copy on site.
  • Poster Sets- These ain’t your grandma’s posters!  Clustered by topic (one you might come up with or that is pre-designed by the staff) these posters are BIG, laminated (perfect for writing on with dry-erase markers) and come with classroom or homework activates to facilitate interactive use of said posters.
  • Full Unit/Semester Curriculums- Are there any box-set curriculums related to art you wish your classroom had?  The Resource Center has a substantial collection of curriculum sets you can borrow for a month or semester at a time.
  • ARTstor Membership- Just for walking through the door you will receive a 120 day (infinitely renewable) membership to the world’s most comprehensive online art database that you can access from any computer with internet connection.
  • Act 48 Credits- If you contact the Resource Center a couple days in advance and sign up with a group of 5-19 peers, you can get Act 48 credits. Use your time however you want once your group receives a brief intro to the space and the tools on site.

Did I mention this is all FREE?  Yes!  FREE!

What are you waiting for?  They have an open walk-in policy, but you can call or email ahead of time to be sure you get a chance to work with someone who has experience in your content area.

For core content lesson plans already loaded onto the PMA’s web site here.

For more information on the Wachovia Education Resource Center click here.