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Equity Design Lab: Exploring Culturally Responsive Teaching

The NAIS Equity Design Lab (EDL) is a leadership and professional development series. Each lab employs iterative design, mind science and other research, skill-building, and best and emerging practices. The goal is to develop innovative solutions and models that independent schools can use to address challenges and opportunities related to equity and social justice.


2017 NAIS Equity Design Lab: Exploring Culturally Responsive Teaching

August 2-4, 2017
The William F. Bolger Center
Potomac, Maryland

Exemplary teaching —the artful blend of content knowledge, zest for learning, and abiding concern for each student and their unique needs and aspirations — is a hallmark of independent education. Yet with wide-ranging demands of an increasingly diverse student body, how do good teachers expand their repertoires so they create an optimum learning environment for all students, but especially those traditionally under-represented.

Equity by Design Lab: Exploring Culturally Responsive Teaching is an expertly guided examination of the essential knowledge, skills, and mindsets necessary to create inclusive and challenging classroom experiences that invite and respect diverse ways of knowing and learning.  This three-day seminar will offer a research-based framework that draws on education research, principles of neuroscience, and practical classroom-based experience, to engage these and other questions:

• How can educators better support racially and culturally diverse students in reaching their full academic potential while at the same time better preparing white and other majority group students to live and learn in a multi-racial, multi-lingual, multicultural world?

• How do we mitigate implicit bias and reduce racially-charged incidents to create a more welcoming and inclusive school culture?
• How can my classroom serve as a model of excellence and educational equity by leveraging the principles and practices of 21st-century culturally responsive instruction?

Follow and join this Lab conversation on Twitter with #NAISEDL.


Teachers (any subject at any grade level), instructional coaches, curriculum directors, instructional support staff, global education specialists, diversity directors and educators, academic deans, and other administrators from NAIS-member and subscriber schools are welcomed to attend.

Topics and Deliverables

  • Understand the connection between social justice education and culturally responsive teaching

  • Strategies for reducing incidents of bias and increasing inclusiveness

  • Creating an “equity lens” to guide policy and practices

  • Define the concept of “culture” so that it is easily operationalized within the school culture and classroom practice

  • Four core ways to make curricular content more responsive

  • Culturally responsive instructional strategies that work across language arts, math, science, and history as well as in art, music and physical education

  • Opportunities to collaborate with other independent school educators

  • Create an action plan that addresses your unique context and equity issues

Design Lab FacilitatorZaretta Hammond, author, Culturally Responsive Teaching and the Brain.   


2017 Registration Information

Register today for 2017 NAIS Equity Design Lab: Culturally Responsive Teaching, August 2-4. If you need to register using a PDF form, please contact Nadia Woods at

​Type of Registration ​Early Bird Pricing
(register by June 2)
​Standard Pricing
​Member $1,295​ $1,475​
​Nonmember $1,625​ $1,775​

Schedule and Accommodations 

The registration fee includes accommodations, all meals, and use of amenities at the Bolger Center. Participants are responsible for their own transportation to and from the Bolger Center. Check-in opens at 3:00 PM on Tuesday, August 1, and your room reservation ends the morning of August 4. Participants will also receive a copy of the facilitator’s highly acclaimed book, Culturally Responsive Teaching and the Brain.


Cancellation and Refund Policy

Please send institute registration cancellations in writing via email to NAIS at by July 7, 2017, to receive a refund minus a $75 processing fee. No refunds will be issued after that date.

Contact Information

Please contact or (202) 973-9761 if you have any questions.


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Article Date: 5/6/2016
Member Perspectives

Zaretta Hammond is a teacher, educator, and the author of Culturally Responsive Teaching and The Brain: Promoting Authentic Engagement and Rigor Among Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Students.

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