Art and Design

Course Description

The new AP Art and Design course presents an inquiry based approach to learning about and making art and design. The course focuses on concepts and skills emphasized within college art and design foundations courses with the same intent: to help students become inquisitive, thoughtful artists and designers able to articulate information about their work. AP Art and Design students develop and apply skills of inquiry and investigation, practice, experimentation, revision, communication and reflection. You will do the same as you begin a mini sustained investigation during the week, to be continued with students during the AP course. Whether you have been teaching AP Art for years or are just beginning, you will find what you need to begin this fall. Come join us for this powerful and exciting experience!

Course Schedule

Day 1

Welcome, Introductions, Agenda for Week

Part 1:  Understanding the Course

Learning Goals and Approach

Working with Course Framework

AP Art and Design Portfolio Structure

Becoming a Member of the AP Community

AP Course Audit and AP Resources

Striving for Equity and Access Using the Growth Mindset

What is a Sustained Investigation?

What are Selected Works?

Inquiry and Art Making

Communicating and Reflecting

Day 2

Part 2: Planning the Course/Teaching the Course

What are 2D Art and Design/3D Art and Design Drawing

Generating Possibilities for Sustained Investigation

Formulating Questions to Further Sustained Investigation

Inquiry and Art Making

Setting Learning Milestones

Communicating and Reflecting

Day 3

Part 3: Planning and Teaching your course

Practicing, Experimenting and Revising with Materials, Processes and Ideas

Connecting Visual and Written Evidence

Inquiry and Art Making

Skillful Syntheses of Materials, Processes and Ideas

Communicating and Reflecting

Day 4

Part 4: Assessing Student Progress and Understanding

Formative and Summative Assessment

Presenting Art and Design for Interpretation

Inquiry and Art Making

Scoring Portfolios

Sharing Sustained Investigations and Sketchbooks


Items participants should bring:

Sketchbook (the same type you will use with your AP Students)

Favorite art materials


Camera (or camera phone)

2021-2022 School calendar

Digital samples of student work

A concept or concepts that you will use to create a mini sustained portfolio of your own.


Phone: 253-535-8790
Fax: 253-535-7184

Instructor Biography: 

Laura Thompson obtained a Bachelor in Fine Arts, Cum Laude, from the Metropolitan State University of Denver as a Painting Major, with concentrations in Sculpture and Metal smithing, and received her Masters in Education from Lesley University. Prior to joining the education field, Laura was a park ranger and bicycle tour leader in USA and Europe. A public school educator for over 25 years, she has served as department chair and as a vital member of district art curriculum writing teams. Her students have been awarded many accolades for their work. She established a new chapter of National Art Honor Society , and developed the dual enrollment program for CTE with Red Rocks Community College, allowing students an avenue to earn college credit. Her relationship with AP Studio Art resulted from the desire to help students elevate their artwork. She began teaching AP Studio Art in 2001. In 2010, she became a reader for AP Art portfolios, and in 2015 was selected as a College Board consultant. Laura is an active artist, working in a variety of painting media, found object sculpture, and jewelry.