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MoPOP’s Teacher Professional Development occurs three times a year and features workshops, tours, curriculum development, and networking opportunities.

Our goal is to create experiences in which teachers engage with pop culture and each other; where we provide useful teaching tools that are interactive, fun, equitable for all learners, and easy to use.

Check out our professional development opportunities for the 2019–2020 school year!


LET’S WORK: Bringing the Art and Activism of Prince Into the Classroom

Event date  SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 2, 2019
Event time  8:30AM–4:00PM  
Event location  MoPOP
$55 per person
Clock hours available

In this interactive workshop, educator Willie Adams, artist Troy Gua, and podcaster Michael Dean will use the Prince from Minneapolis exhibition to explore how Prince strategically used his music, image, and message to challenge traditional ideas of race, class, and gender in popular culture. This full-day workshop will show teachers how to use Prince’s artistry and activism to teach skills and concepts in age-appropriate ways. All participants will receive sample lesson plans and activities, as well as a comprehensive list of suggested readings and reference materials.


Willie AdamsWillie Adams is a dedicated educator with an undying love for the music, artistry, and activism of Prince. After Prince’s untimely death, Adams joined the board of a Minneapolis-based educational non-profit — Purple Playground — where he helped to create Academy of Prince (AOP), a summer enrichment program that teaches youth Prince history, songwriting, and recording. Willie received his Bachelor of Arts Degree in Film and Media Studies from the University of California, Irvine and his Master of Arts in Multicultural Literature for Children and Young Adults from the University of San Francisco. For the past two decades he has served as a teacher and dean, but more importantly, he has used his passion for art and history to be an advocate for the underserved and underrepresented in both public and private schools. Willie is also an equity education consultant, where he partners with school districts around the country to help train teachers on best practices for closing the achievement gap. In addition to his work in education, Willie is also a professional DJ and vocalist and is currently working on his first book.

Troy GuaBorn and raised in Seattle, Troy Gua is a self-taught visual artist who grew up with Ronald McDonald and Ronald Reagan, King Tut and the King of Pop; images and icons that have been imprinted onto his subconscious, helping to fuel a prolific output of Pop-infused conceptual work in an eclectic range of media, marrying commerciality to contemporary with a crisp design aesthetic. His subject matter addresses contemporary culture and the ways in which media, iconography, identity, cultural self-critique, and the universal human need for recognition play parts within it. Gua defines Prince Rogers Nelson as his artistic hero and his life’s and work’s most profound influence and inspiration.

Michael DeanMichael Dean was born and raised in Seattle. Inspired by Prince and a love for graffiti, Dean excels in his passions of music and art. His paintings were featured in Macy’s in Downtown Seattle in the late 80’s. Michael also became an up-and-coming rapper in the Seattle hip-hop scene, lending his talents on keyboard and vocals on a national tour with The Evil Tambourines (SubPop) opening for Sir Mix-A-Lot in 1999. From there, Michael joined the business side of music and managed a CD replication business in downtown Seattle for 18 years. In 1995, Michael started to blog about Prince, which led him to develop the podcast Podcast On Prince. It has run for 13 years and includes in-depth interviews with band members and associates. Michael recently moderated the event ‘Prince: From Minneapolis to the World’ for the Minnesota Historical Society.



Event date  SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 8, 2020
Event time  8:30AM–4:30PM  
Event location  MoPOP
$55 per person
Clock hours available

Join MoPOP, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Discovery Center, and Pacific Science Center for a day of professional development fueled by STEAM.

More details and a link to register coming soon! For more information, contact


Thanks to our education and outreach program sponsor: