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For Principals & Teachers

Professional Development

“Dream A World Education plays a significant role in setting the stage for collegiality and teacher engagement.”

– Brad Rumble, Principal, Esperanza Elementary

Professional Development workshops are designed to inspire, uplift and energize. They are filled with music, dance and creativity.

An interactive professional development workshop precedes each residency program to engage every teacher in every grade level. Workshops are designed create a better understanding of what the program is creating within their school, inspire enthusiasm, and cause a ripple effect that positively influences school climate and culture.

Secrets of the Heart® Teaching Artist Professional Development:

Dream A World Education’s administrative and teaching staff has an extensive list of artistic achievements and leadership experiences. All staff have worked with administrators, teachers and students in a variety of settings, serving diverse student populations in inner city communities.

Twice-yearly, Teaching Artists attend professional development seminars designed to foster growth, develop new strategies for working with children at all learning readiness levels, including English Language Learners and children with special needs. Through these trainings, they assess and refine curriculum, meet with experts in early education and American Sign Language, and share best practices through collaboration with fellow Teaching Artists. In addition, trainings develop Teaching Artists’ ability to recognize and adapt workshop objectives and goals to develop optimal student learning.

Secrets of the Heart® Professional Development for Classroom Teachers

Teachers doing a Dream A World Education professional development workshop.

Secrets of the Heart® teacher training workshops are professional development events for up to 75 teachers with components for teachers at all grade levels. Participants are offered specific tools and instructional tasks to merge the value of curriculum in arts learning with social and cultural understanding. We advise that curriculum for students aligns with the Visual and Performing Arts Standards for the State of California, Common Core and National Core Arts Standards.

Initial one-hour Secrets of the Heart® Professional Development (TK-K) includes:

  • An overview of the overarching themes and art forms that are presented in the program:  friendship and a smile (songwriting), kindness (dance), imagination (theatre arts), and gratitude (visual arts). Teachers are introduced to American Sign Language (ASL) for each “secret of the heart.”
  • Participants learn a Liberian folk song taught in the Yoruba language (spoken in Nigeria and areas of West Africa). They also learn the history and meaning of dance in Africa.
  • In theatre arts workshops, teachers learn how to use well-known works of art to explore imagination and to engage students in language arts and story-telling. They learn that imagination is a muscle which can be exercised — a vital aspect of creating a successful life.
  • In a separate short meeting, classroom teachers participating in the program receive curriculum guides, resources and materials for their students.

Workshops are accompanied by printed materials and are designed for teachers, administrators and arts coordinators.

One World Drum Circles: Professional Development Overview

This is a one-hour presentation for all grade level teachers. The second year of professional development reinforces our sequential curriculum model by continuing to impact positive school culture and climate.

  • Drums are set in a circle as teachers enter. Teachers learn the importance of drumming in African culture, and related historical values. They learn the use of drums in communication, ceremony, healing, ritual, storytelling, and dance.
  • Teachers are introduced to a “call and response” from Guinea, West Africa. They learn its value and benefits.
  • Participants are introduced to the basics of American Sign Language (ASL) as it pertains to Secrets of the Heart® and One World Drum Circles programs. Teachers join together to play rhythms, and have an opportunity to improvise as we go around the circle.
  • This workshop offers teachers useful tools and concepts which they can take back to their classrooms, and involves teachers in an uplifting and inspirational experience that’s important to an ongoing healthy environment of teamwork and cooperation at any school.

Dance In America: Professional Development Overview

This is a one-hour presentation for all grade level teachers. The third year of professional development reinforces our sequential curriculum model by continues to impact positive school culture and climate.


  • Participants engage in a simple dance warm up and evaluate the purpose and meaning of a variety of dance styles in America and their connection to different cultures around the world.


  • Teachers experience the history of dance movement in America from Latin dance, through 60’s, Motown, Michael Jackson and Hip-hop. A “Soul Train” line ends the presentation as teachers express themselves in movement.

The Power of Imagination: Professional Development Overview

Teachers explore the “power of imagination” using Diego Rivera art works to create original story.

Vision Board creation

Teachers use a visualization tool to explore their hopes and dreams for the future by creating their own vision boards.

Whole Program Demo

Content Demo​