Training & Development

Our Approach

Training & Resources


We help corps members become strong classroom and community leaders through a rigorous summer training program, extensive coaching, professional development, and other resources throughout the corps experience.

  • Teaching As Leadership Framework
  • Summer Training
  • Teacher Certification
  • Classroom Support
  • Alumni Support

The Teaching As Leadership (TAL) Framework is based on the idea that great teachers operate like great leaders, and with such teachers, students will make transformative progress.


Before you begin teaching in your own classroom, you’ll attend a multi-week summer institute and attend additional programming. Read more about summer training below.

Locations for summer training vary depending on your regional assignment. Our 2019 summer training schedule will be available later this fall. View our 2018 training schedule to see 2018 schedules, but note that these are subject to change. 

A degree in education isn’t a prerequisite to apply to the corps. However, nearly all corps members must receive a state-issued teaching credential, certificate, license, or permit to be hired by a school. Additionally, nearly all corps members must be considered highly-qualified in their subject area under federal law.

Read more about getting certified.

Once in the classroom, you’ll receive individual and team coaching from your manager of teacher leadership and development (MTLD) and regional staff. You’ll also have access to professional development and online resources.

Learn more about our ongoing support.


Alumni of Teach For America have access to resources and benefits that will help you continue to make an impact in the lives of kids, whether it’s in education or another field.

Learn more about the alumni experience.

Reflections on Training

Susan Asiyanbi
Susan Asiyanbi
New Jersey 2001
Chief Operating and Program Officer

It’s really about having a person who is rolling up their sleeves with you and really helping to remind you that you have these strengths and helping you see how to really utilize them day to day.

A close head shot of a young man with spiked black hair wearing red framed glasses and a white dress shirt, smiling in front of a purple background.
Jaime Ballesteros
Los Angeles 2014
Teacher, Green Dot Public Schools

My MTLD (Manager of Teacher Leadership and Development) and Real-Time Coach have been instrumental. They’ve helped me create a better classroom culture and streamline my lesson plans with practical advice and attention to my specific students’ needs.

An extreme close head shot of a young man with a shaved head, wearing black framed glasses and a brown sweater, smiling.
Chris Diaz
Jacksonville 2011
Manager of Teacher Leadership and Development

As a TFA alum, I use my experience in the classroom to make sure my corps members take the time to learn about their students’ interests and identities within the scope of the community.

Summer Training


Institute Basics

  • Overview
  • Training Components
  • A Day at Institute

Summer institute is a rigorous, hands-on experience. It prepares you with foundational knowledge and skills, which you’ll continue to develop and hone throughout your time as a corps member.

Throughout institute, you’ll work alongside other corps members and TFA staff in small teaching groups. You’ll engage in learning experiences, practice teaching skills, and analyze student progress.

You’ll receive more detailed information from your region before starting training.

Teaching Summer School

Teaching hours vary depending on region. Most corps members teach a classroom of students one or more hours each day and are observed by experienced teachers. During this time, you’ll lead your class to master content while building your own skills in lesson delivery and classroom management.

Observations and Coaching

Teach For America instructional staff will observe your teaching each week and engage in feedback conversations. Together you’ll discuss areas for development and create concrete plans to increase student learning as you develop teaching skills. In addition, veteran district teachers partner with each classroom to provide regular feedback throughout the summer.

After receiving feedback, you’ll reflect on ways to grow and improve. You’ll discuss your approaches with fellow corps members and analyze student progress in order to guide and improve your planning.

Lesson Planning

You’ll receive extensive lesson-planning instruction from instructional staff. You’ll internalize student-learning objectives for the coming week and prepare to teach lessons.

On same days, you’ll do this by internalizing, refining, practicing, and delivering provided lessons plans. On other days, you’ll do this by writing your own plans and revising them based on staff feedback.

Curriculum Sessions

You’ll study fundamentals of teaching and practice teaching techniques to prepare yourself for all elements of classroom instruction. Your region or assigned institute will share more details about your training coursework as training approaches.

During institute, you’ll develop the foundations, skills, and mindsets needed to be an effective beginning teacher. You’ll also make an immediate impact on your summer school students. You’ll build relationships that will support you throughout your corps experience.

You’ll receive more detailed information from your region before starting training.

Sample Daily Institute Schedule

*Note that schedules vary greatly between institutes.

5:30–7:00 a.m. Wake-up and breakfast 

6:30–7:30 a.m. Travel to school on a school bus 

7:30–8:00 a.m. Morning meeting and student breakfast 

8:00–Noon Teaching blocks, professional development, and work time 

Noon–12:30 p.m. Student lunch and school dismissal 

12:30–1:00 p.m. Travel back to institute site on a school bus 

1:00–1:45 p.m. Lunch 

1:45–2:00 p.m. Transition to training sessions held in classrooms 

2:00–5:30 p.m. Teacher education sessions 

5:30–10:00 p.m. Dinner and independent time 

  • Finalize and rehearse tomorrow’s lesson plan 
  • Grade student work 
  • Meet with your advisor 
  • Make copies at the copy center
  • Visit the fitness center

Planning for Summer Training