National Teaching Artist Listening Tour

As of May 2021, Find out what we heard from TAs across the country. Do you have something to add? Reach out to us:

Special thanks to Jennifer Ridgway of Teaching Artists of the Mid-Atlantic (TAMA) for all her hard work in compiling these resources for the community.


The Teaching Artists Guild, the National Guild for Community Arts Education and other teaching artist organizations need your support to host a listening tour in every locality or community in the nation. A listening tour is a facilitated open conversation to gather information, insight, values, context and new ideas from teaching artists on the ground doing the work.



This is a moment to reset and reimagine.  The goal of the tour is to center teaching artists and further the field of teaching artistry.  By bringing teaching artists of local communities to the table, the teaching artist organizations can understand the nuances of teaching artists’ values, how they define their assets and what they identify as their challenges and needs. Learning all this allows the collective of teaching artist associations to deepen their support of and advocacy for the field.  Teaching artists will also directly benefit through the conversation as they affirm what they do, broaden and deepen their community connections with local colleagues, and define their individual and collective next steps.



Sessions are for persons who identify as teaching artists.  Teaching artists may be independent contractors, part-time employees, and even may hold a title in an administrative position.  Here is the TA manifesto, created by and for teaching artists. They may work with multiple arts organizations and live on one or more teaching artist roster.  Participants should attend the session as an individual and be prepared to share their personal experience about their practice and career, letting go of their specific roles within organizations.  It is suggested that sessions be held for no less than 3 teaching artists.  Depending on the size of your region, multiple sessions may be needed to keep sessions small enough to welcome all perspectives.  The session will also include a facilitator and note-taker/technician if organized virtually.



Use the links to get further information and tools to promote, organize, implement and increase the benefits to teaching artists.