School tour in the Portrait Gallery

For Teachers

Be inspired to use portraiture in your classroom. No matter what subject you teach—social studies, English, or visual arts—you will learn and practice techniques to involve your students in creative and innovative ways. By using portraiture as a springboard into deeper discussions about biography and our collective history, the Portrait Gallery strives to create an unprecedented experience for teachers as we gain a glimpse into the past and examine the present.

Calling All Teachers: Create an Identity-Themed Lesson

The National Portrait Gallery and the Smithsonian Center for Learning and Digital Access invite K-12 teachers to create lessons exploring identity. 

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Teacher Workshops

All workshops require preregistration and include interactive tours of a selected exhibition, hands-on components, and take-away resources that provide teachers with innovative ideas and techniques they can adapt for classroom use.

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Teachers at a workshop, in the museum galleries

Student Groups

Student programs at the National Portrait Gallery bring students in contact with the men and women who have shaped our nation. Through analysis of the visual elements of portraiture, students explore biography, art, and the American experience.

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Student in the museum galleries, taking a school tour

Classroom Resources

Want to learn more about the lives of remarkable Americans, past and present, who have contributed to the nation’s history and culture? The Portrait Gallery has a variety of resources for the classroom that have been developed to complement our exhibitions.

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Student studying at the Portrait Gallery