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Invitational Summer Institute (ISI)

*Due to COVID-19, no ISI will be offered for Summer 2020. 

Every other summer, the Route 66 Writing Project will offer a hybrid invitational summer institute for 3-4 weeks in June or July. During the institute, teacher participants examine the most pressing issues related to the teaching and learning of writing across the curriculum. Participants demonstrate and reflect on their own best practices and strategies, and they study current research in the field. Our goal is to foster an interdisciplinary community and support system of educators from all grade levels (K-graduate level) and across the curriculum.

Inaugural Summer Institute 2017 Video
 

Who participates in the Institute?

The Invitational Summer Institute is open to educators who have a minimum of one year teaching experience. We are looking for K-graduate school educators across all content areas—math, science, social studies and the arts, as well as language arts. We also invite administrators to join us. 

What if I want graduate credit?

If you are currently enrolled in a graduate program, or wish to enroll in a graduate program at West Texas A&M University, you may take the Route 66 WritingProject's Invitational Summer Institute as your elective in several of WT's graduate programs.  The institute is offered as a cross listed, three credit-hour course, EDRD/EDPD 6015 Writing Workshop during the summer sessions.  Cost for this option is the same as any three credit-hour graduate course.  

How will I benefit from the Institute?

During the Institute, participants will:

  • Learn from other teachers about the teaching of writing
  • Anticipate challenges for teaching in the future in areas such as: authentic assessment, multicultural writing concerns, computer-assisted instruction, collaborative learning, writing across the curriculum, and the needs of diverse learners
  • Discover more about your own writing process
  • Become a community of teacher-writers
  • Explore current theory and practice in the teaching of writing
  • Consider ways you can share your strengths with other teachers as consultants
  • Hone your own writing skills

What will I do at the Institute?

The primary focus of the SI is the National-Writing-Project-style demo. Unlike a typical teaching demonstration, the goal of the SI Demo is not to showcase your "best practice." Instead, the SI Demo is part of the inquiry process. It is an opportunity for you to try something new with your teaching of writing in a safe, supportive atmosphere and to get useful critical feedback on your ideas. The course description for EDPD 6015 is as follows… Workshop for educators pre-k through university level that 1) studies theory and effective practices in writing pedagogy; and 2) focuses on improving participants’ writing and research skills. Prerequisites: minimum of one year teaching experience; permission from the director of the Route 66 Writing Project, Dr. Regina Chanel Rodriguez: rcrodriguez@wtamu.edu Candidates explore best practices for literacy instruction to develop their own writing skills as they explore how to use the pedagogy in their own classrooms. Candidates write and assess their own and others’ writing; respond to professional literature; and consider broad application of those practices and reflect on their development.

What happens after the Institute?

Once you complete the Institute, you will become a National Writing Project Teacher Consultant. Teacher consultants in the Route 66 Writing Project have the opportunity to create professional development programs for the Panhandle Plains school districts; design and present at local, state, and regional conferences; develop youth writing programs; and participate in the adjudication process for the Scholastic Writing Awards, just to name a few.

Sample Hybrid Institute Schedule 

Pre-Institute Meetings

One Evening in May (Synchronous online), 6:00-8:00 P.M. 

 

  • What is Sacred Writing Time?
  • Determining Burning Questions
  • Choosing Research Books
  • What's a Demo? 
  • Shared Reading Experience 
 
One Evening in May (Synchronous online) 6:00-8:00 P.M.
  • Online Tools
  • Zoom Meetings-Whole Group and Breakout Rooms
  • Google Groups
  • Google Docs-Leaving Comments for Revision 
  • Read chapter in research book 
  • Read chapter in shared text
 
Summer Session I 
 Week 1 (Face-to-Face) 8:30 A.M. to 2:30 P.M. 
  • Breakfast & Chat
  • Sacred Writing Time
  • Research Groups
  • Writing Response Groups
  • Demo conferences 
  • Shared Reading Experience Discussions
 
Week 1 (Asynchronous online) 
  • Sacred Writing Time
  • Research Time
  • Research Responses
  • Post Draft of 1st Anthology Piece to Google Docs
 
Week 2 (Synchronous online) 9:00 A.M. to 12:00 P.M.
  • Sacred Writing Time 
  • Demonstrations and feedback 
  • Shared Reading Experience Discussions
  • Asynchronous Writing Response Groups for remainder of the week
  • Asynchronous Research Groups for remainder of the week
  • 2nd Anthology Piece Due to Google Docs
 
Week 3 (Synchronous online) 9:00 A.M. to 12:00 P.M. 
  • Sacred Writing Time
  • Demonstrations and feedback 
  • Shared Reading Experience Discussions 
  • Asynchronous Writing Response Groups for remainder of the week
  • Asynchronous Research Groups for remainder of the week
  • Final draft of both anthology pieces due by Friday, June 21st 
 
Week 4 (Face-to-Face) 8:30 A.M. to 1:00 P.M. 
  • What's Next Proposals
  • Staying in Touch, Bi-Monthly Meetings, NCTE Conference in Baltimore
  • Lunch & Share anthology pieces with veteran TC's, admins welcome