MOPA loves learning!  Our programs and resources focus on visual literacy, giving students the power to view the images that surround them critically and to create images with meaning and intent.



MOPA’s signature outreach program, Exposure™, offers the opportunity for students throughout San Diego to engage with photography as an expressive art.  The program encourages visual literacy, discussion-based art interpretation, and the development of personal voice.

Through the Exposure™ program, students will:

  • Express their ideas and points of view through photography.
  • Build social relationships and empathy through collaborative group engagements.
  • Participate in open-ended, imaginative art-making.
  • Learn how to look at and talk about artwork using an inquiry-based approach.
  • Build creative confidence explore themes and topics that are meaningful to them through
  • photography.

Our lessons are aligned to VAPA and Common Core standards, and are developed collaboratively with classroom teachers to provide the best experience for students!

Exposure™ is a grant-based program and is provided free of charge to our partner schools. We are proudly partnered with:

  • Roosevelt Middle School
  • Mar Vista Academy
  • Correia Middle School
  • King-Chavez Academy of Excellence
  • Holly Drive Leadership Academy
  • Vallecitos Elementary

For more information or to inquire about partnering with MOPA, contact

The Exposure™ program is only possible thanks to the generous support of the following patrons:

the Capdevilla Gillespie Foundation.


The Collaborative Arts Resources for Education (CARE)

The CARE Program is an educational partnership program between the Museum of Photographic Arts, La Jolla Playhouse, and Timken Museum of Art. Teaching artists from all three institutions collaborate with classroom teachers to integrate art into English, math, and science curricula that give students an experience with photography, theater, painting and drawing. Students work on projects that connect to the three disciplines, giving them a broad range of opportunities to express their creativity, imagination, and perspectives. The CARE Program has worked with Title I schools across San Diego since 2005.

For more information, contact


Educational Partnerships and Research

MOPA is committed to innovation in education! Through groundbreaking programs and exploratory initiatives, MOPA is working to push past the boundaries of traditional education.


Learning Through the Arts Initiative

Title 1 Arts Integration Initiative connects teachers in under-performing Title I schools to area arts education specialists to implement rigorous arts integration strategies that support the four cornerstones of the Title I program: improving student academic achievement, student engagement, school climate, and parental involvement. The Learning Through the Arts integration program supports literacy, math, and science strategies and is aligned with the National Core Arts Standards, Common Core State Standards, and the Next Generation Science Standards.

MOPA has been a visual arts provider in the program since its inception in 2015, partnering with an area middle school and an area high school.

For more information on the initiative, visit the SDSU Learning Through the Arts website.

PrimeTime Scholars After School Program

The PrimeTime Scholars is a partnership between the San Diego Unified School District and six cultural institutions in Balboa Park, and is funded through the Children’s Initiative.  The program connects students to community resources that provide a variety of rigorous project-based learning opportunities that help students to develop critical thinking and decision-making skills and to build self-confidence. MOPA has been a content provider and partner since 2015.


The Museum of Photographic Arts is proud to be a partner in this National Science Foundation funded project that seeks avenues for transforming cultural perceptions of mathematics in ways that broaden learners’ access to the discipline.

Through a collaborative partnership with the Center for Research in Mathematics and Science Learning at SDSU and the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center, MOPA has explored the important connections between STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) learning and the photographic arts, while also developing hands-on opportunities within our gallery spaces that welcome exploration and discovery.

For more about the InforMath project, please visit the Informal Mathematics webpage.