Comments from post-project surveys:

“This is a game changer."
- Teacher

“It ignited a spark in my
son that I have not yet
seen – an excitement to learn
that I hope he can keep experiencing!”

- Parent

A fantastic school
and community event!”

- Administrator


Creative Curriculum From the Inside Out

"This is what education is supposed to be like."

- Teacher comment, Class of 2016

The Creative Schools Initiative invites preK-12 teachers to participate in a unique project where they will work closely with national leaders in the field of curriculum integration, partner with experienced teaching artists, and develop innovative curriculum.

During a one-week planning and learning intensive in Montpelier, teachers link curriculum integration with best practices in personalized learning, backward design, authentic reflection, and scaffolding skills. 

Participating teacher teams are awarded a $5,500 teaching artist residency by the Community Engagement Lab. Teaching artists are chosen from the CEL teaching artist roster, in consultation with CEL staff, and include disciplines in visual art, music, theater, and puppetry.

““The experience we just had with our teaching
artist goes beyond words. [It] was one of the
greatest teaching moments in my memory.

- Teacher comment, Class of 2017

The Creative Schools Initiative (CSI) seeks to develop the creative and critical thinking skills that all students need to succeed.

Teams of at least three classroom teachers from different content areas may apply for a partnership with a teaching artist to integrate a creative project into their curriculum. Experience in the arts or identification as an artist is not necessary.

Teacher/teaching artist teams will build a unit of lesson plans that demonstrate an emphasis on the skills of creative process. 

We are looking for those who have curiosity and passion to enrich teaching with and through the creative process.


1) Develop cross-curricular learning models that deepen students' intrinsic motivation and engagement with learning.

2) Strengthen and assess students’ transferable skills.

3) Strengthen student portfolios with creative work.

4) Support personalized learning.

Teachers awarded a CSI teaching artist residency agree to participate in five days of professional learning and planning. Teachers may choose to earn three graduate credits through Saint Michael's College, or earn a Certificate of Participation (37.5 hours). The sequence is the same for both options:

1) June 25-29, 2018, 8:30am-3:30pm daily: Planning and learning intensive at Montpelier High School, where you explore and design your project plans with your teaching artist and Institute faculty.

2) 2018/19 school year: Seven-day teaching artist residency and culminating event. You schedule the residency with your teaching artist to best fit your project's goals.


1) Likelihood of the project to build sustainable learning models that integrate curriculum with a focus on teaching creative and critical thinking skills.

2) A balance of high ambition and achievability.


$1,900 per person for three graduate credits. $1,600 per person for Certificate of Participation.

$100 per person deposit, or school district purchase order, due by February15, 2018.

All fees (less deposit) due July 15, 2018.

Materials and supplies for your project are the responsibility of your school. Those expenses will vary for each project and can be shaped to fit your budget.

Applications for the 2018/19 season will open on September 15. The application deadline is February 15, 2018.

Learn more here.

For snap-shots of CSI projects from previous years and around the state, go here.

Eric Booth

Co-founder and Engagement Director

Eric Booth is widely referred to as one of the nation’s most creative teachers, one of the best teachers of creativity, and the father of the teaching artist profession. In 2015 he was awarded the nation's highest honor for an arts educator: the Arts Education Award by Americans For The Arts. In arts learning, he has taught at Juilliard (13 years), Stanford University, NYU, Tanglewood and Lincoln Center Institute (25 years), and The Kennedy Center (12 years). He was the Faculty Chair of the Empire State Partnership program for three years (the largest arts-in-education project in America), and held one of six chairs on The College Board’s Arts Advisory Committee for seven years. He is the founder and co-designer of the world's first (Oslo 2012) and second (Brisbane 2014) International Teaching Artist Conferences, and is the recipient of the first honorary doctorate in teaching artistry (New England Conservatory).

Judith Bose, Ph.D.
Senior Teaching Artist

Dr. Judith Bose is an independent arts education consultant, specializing in the area of teaching artist development and the intersection of cultural organizations, schools, teachers and teaching artists. She previously served as the Director of Teacher Education and Educational Initiatives at the Longy School of Music of Bard College, where she developed an innovative Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) Music degree program, and led Longy’s Teaching Artist Program. In New York, she was a master teaching artist at the Lincoln Center Institute and the New York Philharmonic for ten years, and she has worked with numerous schools and cultural organizations both nationally and internationally. Currently, Judith is working with Longy and the WolfBrown arts research firm on a multi-site national evaluation study of El Sistema-inspired programs in the US.


“I credit our teaching artist
with helping me see science
in a new light.”

- Teacher

“My daughter’s attitude was awesome about this project
and it improved her overall attitude about school.”
- Parent

“Students were able to
work collaboratively with
peers and create deep
connections with the unit.”

- Administrator


"Students thoroughly loved
a chance to think differently
across multiple areas."

- Teacher

“My son was much more
excited about going to school during the residency.”
- Parent

“The project puts these
vital transferable skills at
the center of learning rather
than as an after-thought.”

- Administrator


“This is a powerful and
effective strategy for
ALL students.”

- Teacher

“Every evening at dinner,
my daughter talked on and
on about the music and
theater—AND about the
historical events and people.”

- Parent

“The project reached some students that have low engagement otherwise.”
- Administrator