BRAINworks Programming

BRAINworks programs are federally-funded, providing professional development in arts integration for Berkshire County educators across PreK-12 classrooms and content by leveraging the region’s existing educational and cultural assets.


Summer Institutes

The Summer Institute is an intensive, five-day professional development course for our BRAINworks educators covering focused content, including:

  • arts-integrated teaching strategies for PreK-12th grade

  • rigor in the classroom and using Webb’s Depth of Knowledge schema for increasing academic rigor in lessons

  • skill-building for arts techniques across artistic disciplines

  • strategies for evaluation and documentation of student performance and learning through assessment

  • exploration of Berkshire County arts/cultural organizations and how their programs and offerings can play a role in curriculum development

The content of each subsequent Summer Institute builds on the learning from the previous one.

Evening Workshop Series

The Evening Workshop Series offers professional development opportunities to BRAINworks educators that are taught by the staff of our 12 key program partners. These monthly, 3-hour workshops are hosted by arts/cultural organizations across Berkshire County and provide educators the opportunity to experience artmaking strategies for the classroom firsthand. Strategies have ranged from collage to mobile phone video production!  Evening Workshops are led by our partner organizations:

  • Barrington Stage Company

  • Berkshire Film and Media Collaborative

  • Berkshire Museum

  • Berkshire Theatre Group

  • IS183 Art School of the Berkshires

  • Jacob’s Pillow

  • Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center


  • Norman Rockwell Museum

  • The Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute

  • Tanglewood

  • WAM Theatre


Lesson Study Seminars

Lesson Study Seminars are a series of immersive workshops where participants explore arts integration and Webbs’ Depth of Knowledge on-site at local arts organizations. In 2018, we held Lesson Study Seminars from October to December. In conjunction with additional online learning components, BRAINworks educators:

  • explored, analyzed, and applied knowledge about academic rigor in lessons

  • continued building skills in artmaking techniques across artistic disciplines

  • delivered presentations to and received feedback from their peers about arts-integrated lessons they had taught in their classrooms

  • practiced evaluation and documentation of student learning through arts-based assessment strategies

  • studied Professional Learning Communities as a method of collaborative peer learning to achieve common goals

The seminars were hosted by three of our key partner arts/cultural organizations: Berkshire Museum, Jacob’s Pillow, and MASS MoCA. 

Profesional Learning Communities

Each BRAINworks educator works throughout the year in a small group of their cohort members: a Professional Learning Community (PLC). In their PLCs, educators critically engage with their peers about developing arts-integrated curriculum, share experiences about using arts integration strategies in their classrooms, and seek feedback about this work.
PLCs meet monthly and allow BRAINworks educators the chance to work collaboratively with their peers across disciplines, schools, and school districts. The BRAINworks Content Coordinator meets with all PLC groups to offer additional support and guidance.


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