CPD & Teachers' Events

Our range of professional development programmes introduce the Gallery as an educational resource, supporting teachers to interpret portraiture and develop programming ideas for classroom work and Gallery visits.

We offer a CPD programme of practical workshops, after-hours private views, artist talks and taster sessions giving teachers a special insight into our Collections and temporary exhibitions.

Join colleagues to share, discover and enjoy exploring education through portraits and portraiture.

Our CPD offer and teachers events fall under the following categories: 

Spotlight: An evening preview of our Collection.  Free exhibition entry with guest speaker. Share a glass of wine and ideas with colleagues. FREE

Saturday Spotlight: Morning preview of our Collection.  Free exhibition entry. Enjoy discussions with colleagues and gallery learning staff over tea, coffee and biscuits. Teachers packs provided. Charged event 

Reflections: Three hour seminar usually linked to a temporary exhibition  with guest speakers. Charged event

Expressions: Artist lead practical one day workshop. Refresh and revive your creativity. Charged event

In Focus: Full day, in-depth focus with specialist speakers and expert insights on a specific exhibition or theme. Charged event

We also offer other practical activities, suitable for teachers, during our Thursday and Friday Late Shift evenings.

Bookings and RSVPs are essential and non refundable. Check these pages and under NEWS for more special previews and events to be announced during the year.

Teachers’ Events

Spotlight - Sargent: Portraits of Artists and Friends
Twilight: Expert Insight for the Classroom

Thursday 26 February 2015

17.30 - 19.30

Join the Learning Department for an exhibition talk on the talent of John Singer Sargent (1856-1925) the greatest portrait painter of his generation. Don’t miss this unmissable opportunity to discover the artist’s most daring, personal and distinctive portraits. Enjoy a glass of wine, collect resources and gain free exhibition entry.

Book online via Eventbrite 





CPD: Portraiture for developing professional practise

Please note, the following events are charged.

Expressions: Fashion and Adornment

Saturday 31 January 2015
11.00 – 16.00 (with a break for lunch not provided)
Suitable for Secondary Art Teachers

Working with fashion designer Georgia Lowe to gather ideas for classroom practice with this unique workshop designed to give teachers of Fashion, Art or Textiles the opportunity to draw inspiration from the Collection before experimenting with paper to create imaginative costume samples.

£75 pp (inc booking fees, tea and coffee, all materials provided)

Book Online via Eventbrite


Expressions: Searching for Sargent

Oil Painting Workshop
Saturday 28 February 2015
11.00 -16.00 (with a break for lunch not provided)
Suitable for Secondary Art Teachers

Award winning artist Isobel Peachey leads this practical oil painting workshop where teachers have the opportunity to explore and experiment with unique oil painting techniques innovated by the artist John Singer Sargent. The day will begin with an inspiring  visit to the exciting exhibition, Sargent Portraits of Artist and Friends

£75 pp (inc booking fees, tea and coffee, all materials provided)

Free entry to the exhibition is included in the ticket price.

Book Online via Eventbrite


General Officers of World War I
by John Singer Sargent
oil on canvas, 1922
NPG 1954

In Focus: Art, Conflict & Memory
CPD Study day for teachers of History, Art and Citizenship
National Portrait Gallery and Imperial War Museums
Friday 6 March 2015
9.00– 16.30 (lunch not provided)

A unique cross-site study day (starting at the Imperial War Museums) exploring the themes of truth and memory looking at conflict from the First World War to the present day.    Teachers have the opportunity of working with key speakers to explore questions about memory, representation and the shaping of identity using material and artworks from IWM London and the National Portrait Gallery.

Booking essential limited places
Book online via eventbrite

Booking information:

Please note that although this event is free, to cover costs we will charge a fee of £40 per head for no shows. Cancellations may be made up until 10 am Monday 2 March in order to allow us to cover spaces from the waiting list.

In Focus: ‘Sing a Portrait’ CPD day for Primary Teachers

Expert insight for the classroom
Thursday 25 June 2015
10.30 – 16.00 (lunch not provided)

Unlock the creative power of portraiture and music for your primary pupils. This one-day CPD workshop explores the methodology behind ‘Sing a Portrait’ KS2 workshops run by the National Portrait Gallery and English Touring Opera. Learn how to use a single portrait to ignite your primary pupils’ creativity and follow their curiosity working collaboratively to create and perform their own musical composition.

Working with professional musicians from English Touring Opera, a post-graduate musician from the Royal Academy of Music and National Portrait Gallery Learning staff, CPD day participants take part in a collaborative music workshop culminating in performing their new composition in the Gallery spaces. Discover strategies to support cross-curricular work bringing art, history and literacy together with music.

£40 pp (inc booking fees)

Book Online via Eventbrite

Image banner: Photograph Marysa Dowling ©National Portrait Gallery, London