Saturday, March 09, 2013

The Wayland Literacy Institute: Join Us

The Wayland Public Schools community invites all k-12 teachers interested in sharing and developing literacy strategy and knowledge to the Wayland Literacy Institute on June 27th and June 28th, 2013 in Wayland, Massachusetts.

The Institute will feature Ralph Fletcher, education consultant and author of books for children and young adults. Educators from Wayland and nearby school districts will offer a range of workshops focusing on topics such as ePortfolios, blogging, digital stories (my workshop), RTI, coaching, writing and more.  You can register for the event via the Institute website.

Attending this conference on your own or with a team of teachers from your school will serve to lift your literacy instruction for many reasons.

First, though the conference falls at the very end of the school year when teachers are tired, the tone and structure of the event are easy-going and friendly.  Most attendees wear comfortable summer clothing and come with a relaxed, pre-vacation attitude.

Next, the conference can serve to jump-start your literacy efforts for the following year.  During the conference, I typically outline my literacy program for the year to come and list new ideas for growing that program as I listen to the featured author and attend workshops.  I already know that I want to develop my use of "flipping" and "blogging," and the teachers offering the blogging workshop are doing a wonderful job with that so I want to hear how they do it.  I also want to build my interdisciplinary literacy efforts with regard to social studies and research, so I may attend those workshops as well. A Wayland high school teacher and author, Ed DeHoratius, will be presenting and since I'm both impressed and curious about his work, I may sign up for that workshop too. Further, two fifth grade teachers at my school, who are known for their attention to detail and finesse, are presenting their use of ePortfolios with fifth grade students. Barnes and Noble will offer a Nook workshop too which may add a fine start or continuation to your school's digital text use. These are only a few of the many enticing workshops planned.

The conference is also a time to share ideas with colleagues near and far.  I have found that I gained as many ideas from those attending and those that present--hence it's an opportunity to learn in a relaxed, literacy focused environment. If child care is an issue, Wayland Park and Recreation and the Wayland Community Programs offer a number of camps during that time too.  I already signed my 13-year old up for Wayland Escapes that week--a terrific field-trip camp for the Middle School set.  Summer Adventure and Pegasus are two more programs I've used in the past when my children were younger.  The times and locations of these events are a nice match for the conference.

Don't hesitate to contact the conference leader, Karyn Saxon via twitter @waylandelass or me @lookforsun if you have questions about the Institute.  Particularly after participating in this morning's challenging and engaging #satchat with regard to literacy leadership, I'm looking forward to this time of focused attention to students' reading and writing development and engagement. Thanks for your consideration. I look forward to possibly learning with you in late June.

Wayland's Math Institute is taking place on July 1 and 2.