Who Should Apply

Middle School (grades 5-8) STEAM teaches who have an interest in expanding their practice to include informal education techniques. Ideal candidates serve in public schools across the United States and regularly collaborate with peers in their schools, districts, and regions. Efforts will be made to enroll a cohort that supports a diverse, equitable, and inclusive learning environment. Educators of color, LGBTQ+ educators, educators with disabilities, and educators working in the public sector, particularly Title I schools, are strongly encouraged to apply.

TII cohorts are selected after submitting a complete application, which is reviewed through a multi-step process. Reviewers consider a variety of things when selecting cohort members, including (but not limited to) school type and grade levels taught, teacher demographic information, answers to application questions, an introduction video, and a Professional Development Plan proposal.  

Teachers Will Learn

During their time in Washington, DC, and during the school year, teachers will focus on authentic learning, including the incorporation of real-world problems, open-ended inquiry, and hands-on, student-driven practices. Cohort members will work to define the term as it relates to their practice and design content around it as they progress through the program. 

Through hands-on activities, museum tours, visits to other museums, group work, and expertise from museum educators and content experts, teachers will use aerospace science, history, and technology to shape their ideas about authentic learning and bring informal education techniques into their classrooms. 

As a part of the application process, teachers will be asked to propose a plan for development of their practice, both as professionals and as a member of their school community.

We Provide

  • There is no cost for teachers to participate. Teachers are provided with lodging, food, and travel.
  • During the institute, teachers will be given special museum experiences and access to content experts in both informal education and aerospace content.
  • Participants will also have opportunities to connect with their cohort and museum staff several times during the school year.

Expectations for Participants

  • Commit to two weeks each summer for two consecutive summers.
  • Collaborate with other TII teachers to develop and iterate upon your proposed plan. 
  • Actively participate in sessions led by Smithsonian Institution staff and guests on the marriage of informal and formal learning. 
  • Assist in the evaluation of and iteration upon current educational programming at the National Air and Space Museum. 

    Teachers participate in the TII. 

    Teachers participate in the TII.

    Teachers participate in the TII. 

    Teachers participating in TII. 

    Teachers participate in the TII.

How to Apply

The TII application will open for 2023 candidates in November 2022. Check back at the beginning of November to apply!

The National Air and Space Museum requires all participants to be vaccinated except in limited circumstances where a person is legally entitled to a reasonable accommodation. Participants will be required to show proof of vaccination at the start of the program (do not submit as part of the application). Acceptable proof of vaccination includes:

  • A copy of the CDC COVID-19 Vaccination Record Card
  • A copy of the record of immunization from a health care provider or pharmacy
  • A copy of medical records documenting the vaccination
  • A copy of immunization records from a public health or state immunization information system
  • A copy of any other official documentation containing required data points that state:
    • Type of vaccine administered
    • Date(s) of administration and the name of the health care professional(s) or clinic site(s) administering the vaccine(s)

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