Teacher Training


In addition to our direct in-school, after-school, and summer youth programming, HEART provides a number of professional development programs. Our trainings and workshops are designed to provide administrators and educators with the knowledge and strategies needed to integrate humane education into their daily academic lessons and their wider school community. We also offer programs appropriate for youth leaders, parents, and concerned citizens who want to foster humane and compassionate connections between youth and the living world around us in non-traditional educational settings.

Please see our professional development opportunities below and contact us at email@teachheart.org if you are interested in arranging any of these trainings to meet your school or organization’s educational needs.


New York City – Department of Education ASPDP (After School Professional Development Program) P-Credit Course

H.E.A.R.T. is an educational partner with the NYC DOE’s ASPDP, and has offered approved professional development courses for NYC teachers since 2009 called Promoting Success in Science and Literacy through Humane Education.                   

In this course, participants explore creative strategies for using humane education content to support the development of science and literacy skills, and develop tools for effective differentiation and assessment strategies. Educators will learn how to develop effective lesson plans, addressing humane topics that align to specific Common Core State Standards and meet Danielson competencies 3b. & 3c.

What past attendees are saying about this course:

HEART should be state mandated, just like child abuse coursework is. Although we are given city mandated PD’s on bullying, and a small variety of things that are important, having HEART PD’s would teach teachers more empathy and compassion, and give them context of what is going on in the world. I believe it would improve the teaching profession, along with student learning, and increase better care of our shared world. If we want to change the world, we need to be aware of what is going on and offer ways to take action for positive change.  -Lynette Edwards

This is the first ASPDP course that I have taken and, if this course is any indication, I plan to take more of these after-school professional development courses. I cannot think of any way that I could improve this course. I think it was a great experience and certainly taught me a lot… I am hoping that my students will reap the benefits of this knowledge.  -Brianne Reardon

I really enjoyed taking this course.  It was one of the best courses I have taken so far…Very engaging… Plenty of resources that can be actually used…Very thoughtful responses in feedback… I would definitely recommend this course! – Christina Boscana

 I…appreciated the ability to receive critical evaluation of my work so that I may be able to create more effective lessons. This course does not compare to any of the other ASPDP courses that I have taken…This course should not be changed in any way. I am looking forward to taking another one of your courses (if there are any) through ASPDP in the future. -Alisha Rodgers

In-Service Trainings

If you want to increase student engagement, foster empathy, promote critical thinking, and empower youth to engage in service projects, consider coordinating a H.E.A.R.T. in-service humane education training. Our trained professional humane educators can conduct a humane education workshop, tailored to your schools’ specific needs, to provide your educators with the tools and knowledge needed to infuse humane education into their everyday educational practice. Educators who attend will receive a free humane education resource guide to begin bringing humane education into their classrooms immediately.

American Bar Association Collaboration

We offer a joint humane education public service project with the American Bar Association, training volunteer attorneys and law students to teach a four-lesson program on animal welfare to 4th and 5th graders.  We co-authored an extensive humane education training manual with the ABA that is distributed to volunteers as part of our workshops. We have provided this workshop to volunteers in states all across the country, including: California, Florida, Illinois, Michigan, New York, North Carolina, Washington D.C., and more. If you are a member of the ABA and are interested in coordinating a training near you, please contact us at email@teachheart.org

Social and Emotional Learning

There is a distinct connection between Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) and humane education. According to the Collaborative for Social and Emotional Learning (CASEL), SEL is “the process through which children and adults acquire and effectively apply the knowledge, attitudes, and skills necessary to understand and manage emotions, set and achieve positive goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain positive relationships, and make responsible decisions.” Humane education complements SEL by encouraging youth to explicitly apply these skills and values to both people and animals, as well as to their local and global communities. We recently teamed up with Tribes Learning Community, which was selected as a model program by CASEL, to add a humane education component to its existing 24-hour SEL training, which we piloted at an elementary school in Indianapolis.

Humane Literature Workshop

A great way to incorporate humane education into your educational programs is through humane literature. In this workshop, participants learn how to identify humane literature, a valuable tool for teaching children empathy, critical thinking, and respect for all. We demonstrate how to engage students in learning, with both fictional and non-fictional texts, through questioning and discussion techniques that encourage higher-order thinking. Additionally, we discuss and practice inquiry-based learning as an effective strategy in fostering curiosity.

Animal Resource Guide

Our animal resource guide, created in collaboration with the ASPCA and IFAW, is filled with 40 lessons and activities covering issues related to companion animals, wildlife, and farm animals. These lessons engage students in learning, while meeting academic criteria through their alignment to Common Core State Standards. The guide is free and downloadable to the public on our website. However, we can also conduct a workshop to provide training on humane education, delve into the guide content, and equip participants with hard copies of the resource guide and our accompanying videos. Please contact us if you are interested in an in-person training based on our animal resource guide.

Webinar Series

Our free webinar series provides educators, youth leaders, advocates, parents, and concerned citizens with accessible humane education presentations and resources. Our webinar series covers a wide range of topics that anyone can attend live from the privacy of their home or workplace. Additionally, our programs are archived so that if you miss them, you can download and watch at your own convenience. See our archived and upcoming webinars. Please contact us to let us know if there are any topics you are interested in for future webinars.

“You taught the kids that it is ‘cool to care’ and that they can make a change in the community. Please come back next year!” – NYC public school teacher

“Taking the Humane Education P-course influenced my personal approach to teaching by giving me tools to incorporate new material into my classroom. It inspired me to bring humane education values into the classroom in a way that allowed students to have a broader understanding of current events, and helped them develop possible solutions through knowledge and critical thinking. Ultimately, as a new teacher, the course gave me a broader definition of teaching and showed me that any curriculum can be expanded with humane education.” – NYC Public School Teacher