Professional Development


Workshops, seminars and training courses are organized to help teachers, staff and program providers stay up to date with new trends and learn fresh strategies, techniques and methods for classroom challenges and to develop and integrate curriculum that meets the needs of at-risk students attending public and private schools. The overriding idea behind the DMDL approach to professional development is that increased knowledge helps teachers improve student achievement. Based on Howard Gardner’s multiple intelligences, this asserts that children learn in different ways, DMDL’s professional development initiative focuses on what each teacher needs to fine-tune his or her classroom practice.

Focus on the Student

Leaving No Child Behind, Literally!
In this workshop, participants will:

  • Explore Howard Gardner’s theory of multiple intelligence
  • Discover strategies for using the theory in classroom application
  • Recognize barriers to student performance
  • Discover the barriers are within teacher influence
  • Create strategies to help all students keep learning

Non-traditional Teaching for Non-traditional Learners
There’s more to music than meets the ear. In this workshop we will:

  • Discover the inner qualities of music as they pertain to life, living and education
  • Learn various connections between musical intelligence and academic concepts
  • Using the inherent elements of music, discover connections between the arts, core subjects (reading and math) and life skills
  • Gain a greater understanding on how music can function beyond entertainment purposes

Child Abuse & Neglect: An Introduction for Mandated Reporters
In this workshop, participants will be able to:

  • Recognize various types of child abuse
  • Identify the signs and symptoms of child abuse
  • Know your responsibilities as a mandated reporter
  • Understand steps to take when a student discloses abuse

Focus on the Teacher

Hook Them, Engage Them, Transform Them
Have you ever had a problem getting youth to be deeply engaged in instruction? Could you use tools and support to help kids take ownership of their learning? If your answer is yes to either of these questions, we have a PD and coaching for you.

We conduct engaging professional development opportunities for teachers and administrators. Our professional development teaches strategies to get youth (grades K-12) more engaged in the academic experience. When kids are not in engaging classrooms, their learning suffers. When instruction captivates the creativity of kids, they are better prepared to thrive. Our emphasis is upon the utilization of characters or relevant artifacts to develop character traits. We are also available to partner with teachers for ongoing coaching. See the attachment for more about the presenter and previous experience.


  • Free access to culturally relevant weekly videos. These instructional videos empower teachers to teach character development in their classes.
  • Tools to implement character development for all subjects, in a manner that increases classroom engagement
  • Methods to align character development to academic as well as culture and climate metrics

Forming a Foundation for Successful Collaborations between Parents & Teachers
In this workshop, participants will be able to:

  • Examine collaborative methods to work with parents
  • Discover methods that empower parents to better serve as partners in their child’s education.
  • Participate in role-playing and explore effective communication strategies

Teaching 101: Teaching for Teachers
Some days the most experienced instructor can feel like a beginning teacher
Strategies presented in this workshop will:

  • Enrich the new teacher as well as the veteran educator alike
  • Equip teachers in writing lesson plans, getting organized and assessing students

Additionally, the age old question, “The plan failed… what next?” will also be addressed by examining activities that offer rich educational experiences for students when lessons do not go according to plan.

Stress Management & Relaxation: Using Music as a Chill Pill
In this workshop, participants will:

  • Recognize stressors in the workplace
  • Recognize bodies’ physical, emotional and mental responses to stress
  • Learn a range of coping mechanisms for handling stress effectively
  • Provide an open forum to speak about known work stressors and anticipate future potential stressors in order to feel prepared for the school year

Differentiated Instruction: Best Practices
To differentiate instruction is to recognize students varying background knowledge, readiness, language, preferences in learning, interests, and to react responsively.

Differentiated instruction is a process to approach teaching and learning for students of differing abilities in the same class. The intent of differentiating instruction is to maximize each student’s growth and individual success by meeting each student where he or she is, and assisting in the learning process.

What Is My Role When It Comes to RTI: Response to Intervention?
This workshop will attempt to help educators realize how critical it is to understand the potential of RTI and its impact on the struggling reader. Upon leaving this workshop, participants will learn early and effective teaching strategies for all students by utilizing a three-tiered model approach that showcases three levels of intensity. Using the tools gleaned from this workshop, participants will be enabled to help students get the intensive, individualized instruction they need before they begin to fail!

Focus on the Teaching Environment

Creative Classroom Management Techniques & Tips
This workshop will focus on enabling teachers to assess their style of classroom management. Participants will discuss instructional strategies for various learning styles and examine multiple behavior modification strategies that will enhance their classroom management skills.

Building Strong Work Relationships through Healthy Communication
This workshop will provide school personnel with reflection on two of the 11 Illinois Professional Teaching standards: communication and collaborative relationship; consider what attitude and skills it takes to collaborate and communication; identify a tool for pre-empting potential work relationship snags; and review strategies for building strong relationships between families and school.

Pathways to Success: “Following the Leader to Greatness”
In this workshop, participants will:

  • Create a successful learning environment for all students
  • Review a school-wide discipline plan
  • Discuss how leadership is part of what the teachers teach, instead of an additional “thing” to teach
  • Describe one component of your school’s culture that has made a positive difference

Focus on Making Connections

Using Music to Teach Across the Curriculum
This workshop will examine Teaching Music Across the Curriculum as a way to support students’ needs and achieve curricular objectives by using music as an emotional hook to inspire, create long-lasting memories and increase critical and higher level thinking skills. Educators can create musical meaning while simultaneously reinforcing and supporting other curricula, such as Communication Arts, Math, History, Social Studies, and Science.

The Arts and Common Core
As educators work to help students meet the demands of the Common Core State Standards in English/language arts and mathematics, many arts education advocates are making the case that the arts can be a valuable partner. This workshop will further explore the potential of arts integration with the common core and provide practical examples of how to put the concept into practice.

Alternative Methods for Teaching Reading & Math through Music and the Arts
Based on Howard Gardner’s Multiple Intelligence Theory, this workshop will encourage teachers to make the connection between musical intelligence and the academic concepts. Using inherent elements of music, participants will discover connections between the arts, core subjects and life lessons. Teachers will be able to apply this methodology to all students, especially non-traditional learners.