Join VTS Trainers and Community Members from around the globe for FREE weekly VTS image discussions on Wednesdays at VTS Look Club Online! Register through the Events tab below. To find out more about Remote Learning with VTS and to peek at one of the images we will discuss at Look Club, check out the Image of the Week.


These current projects showcase the collaborative and innovative ways VTS can support a wide range of communities. How can we help with your project? Contact us.

  • New York Times

    What began in 2012 as a collaborative experiment in live, online image discussion has since become the most popular feature on the New York Times Learning Network blog.

    The weekly feature, named for the second of three questions in the Visual Thinking Strategies method, "What's Going On In This Picture?”, or "WGOITP?” for short, asks students (aged 13+) to look closely at a carefully selected image from the New York Times photo archive.  Students then join the conversation by responding, in a written blog post, with the three VTS questions in mind:

    • What is going on in this picture?
    • What do you see that makes you say that?
    • What more can you find?

    VTS Moderators respond to student comments with paraphrasing unique to the blog format.  Hundreds of comments stream in throughout the 9:00am - 2:00pm (EST) window of live discussion on Mondays, enabling VTS Moderators to focus on framing thinking and common themes between students.  Students also respond to one another, making for interesting linkages between ideas from all over the country and world.

    Following the live discussion, students continue to post comments throughout the week.  On Friday mornings, information about the photo is revealed at the bottom of the WGOITP blog. Students are encouraged to consider how reading the caption and learning the backstory might influence the ways in which we see the image.  Check out this video introduction to "What's Going On In This Picture?"

    Our team is made up of experienced VTS trainers and practitioners working in schools, art museums and cultural institutions.

    Active Moderators

    • Dianne Aoki, Tacoma, WA
    • Alice Bebbington, Los Angeles, CA
    • Hilda Diaz Covarrubias Ruiz, Kuwait
    • Amy Chase Gulden, New York, NY
    • Ana Guzman, Los Angeles, CA
    • Kai Monet, Los Angeles, CA
    • Lucie Charkin, Marin, CA
    • Addie Gayoso, Washington, D.C.
    • Em Miller, Tucson, AZ
    • Robyn Muscardini, Sonoma, CA
    • Dre Ortiz Galdamez, Los Angeles, CA
    • Pasquale Petix, Los Angeles, CA
    • Melissa Tran, New Orleans, LA

    New York Times Learning Network Team

    • Michael Gonchar
    • Katherine Schulten
  • VTS Trainer Fellowship

    VTS Trainer Fellowship

    The VTS Trainer Fellowship is a VTS Trainer development program that provides paid, on-the-job mentorship, certification, and supportive opportunities to build skills and confidence to train others in the VTS method.  


    With a bi-annual application process and program duration, the VTS Trainer Fellowship program seeks VTS practitioners who have already completed the VTS Beginner Practicum, Advanced Practicum, and Coaching Workshop I (in-person and/or online), and who maintain an active VTS practice.  VTS specifically seeks applicants with cultural backgrounds and life experiences that have traditionally been underrepresented in the arts and cultural sector and within the VTS staff.  


    With invitation to the program, Fellows are hired by Commonweal as temporary part-time employees of Visual Thinking Strategies, earning the same rate of pay as all VTS part-time staff.  Fellows learn to train others in the VTS method with a cohort of peers and VTS Trainers & Coaches, and upon successful completion of Fellowship Components, are awarded VTS Facilitator, Coach, & Trainer Certifications.  Following the Fellowship program, new VTS Trainers have possible opportunities to continue working on the VTS staff, as well as work as independent contractors outside of the VTS organization.


    2022 VTS Trainer Fellows:

    • Lei Ahsing, Aiea, HI
    • Kelsey Donahue, Seattle, WA
    • Sara Lasser Yau, Northampton, MA
    • Janet Lee, Los Angeles, CA
    • Laurel Nakanishi, O'ahu, HI
    • Miho Oka, Osaka, Japan
    • Tatiana Sanguinette, Los Angeles, CA
    • Melissa Tran, New Orleans, LA
  • VTS in Science

    In partnership with the Wild Center (Tupper Lake, NY), VTS is creating workshops and toolkit for science museum educators and classroom teacher to improve students' ability to observe, think, listen and communicate, within the science context. Regional partners include the Seattle Aquarium, the Rochester Museum and Science Center and the Worcester EcoTarium along with teachers and administrators from local school districts.


    This three-year project, funded by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), builds upon a separate 2012 planning IMLS grant where initial teaching and evaluation techniques were developed. Sharing these tools with museums and science centers around the country can allow their connections with local schools to grow and fill a vital need for education that is interdisciplinary, integrated, and focused on skills such as critical thinking, creativity, effective communication, and adaptability.

  • Turnaround Arts

    In 2016, the Turnaround Arts program, a project of the President's Committee on Arts and Humanities, selected VTS as one of only two whole-school arts integration strategies to support student engagement, improve instruction, and raise achievement in some of the nation's lowest-performing schools. 

In the 2016-17 school year, VTS is providing professional development opportunities to over twenty Turnaround Arts schools in New York, Oregon, California, Wisconsin, Minnesota and North Dakota.