The CCW Teacher Corps was designed to offer teaching opportunities for the artists of Center for Creative Works. As part of CCW's mission to provide creative vocational pursuits, Teacher Corps combines the skills that participating artists have already developed in the studio with an understanding for communicating these skills to a broad audience.
This unique initiative is one of the only teacher training programs for adults with developmental disabilities in the country. Giving CCW artists the opportunity to work in the role of teacher is an invaluable experience for them to share their expertise outside of the studio, and for students to be introduced to new methods and approaches to learning.
The core of Teacher Corps is based in woodworking, facilitated by CCW wood shop teacher Sherina Poorman. She designed safe, manual adaptations for power tools for our studio, and made them portable enough to bring into the community for aspiring woodworkers to use. Bringing tools to various locations around Philadelphia, the Teacher Corps has led projects in building custom fidget spinners, race cars, custom clocks, and wood inlay boxes.
Over the past two years, CCW Teacher Corps have taught woodworking with accessible tools to groups of undergraduate students at Haverford College, grade schoolers at ACLAMO! in Norristown, graduate students at Moore College of Art and Design, the West Philadelphia community at the Clark Park Arts Fest, and preschoolers at Ardmore Presbyterian Church.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, Teacher Corps has adapted to be a virtually taught curriculum via Zoom. CCW teachers have led small groups of kids in projects learning to use scroll saws, which CCW loans out for student use at home.