Tuesday, May 31, 2016

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From Bill's Heart

Thank you

. . . for the outpouring of love, moral support, and prayers on the death of my wife, Kathy Hessert-Tucker. I was touched by so many of you who wrote or attended the visitation or memorial service.  Many of you knew her personally, and she loved the work of the Writing Project, participating in the 2011 summer institute.

I am sorry if anyone did not receive notice of her passing. Her obituary can be found at: http://www.niefuneralhomes.com/obituaries/Kathy-Hessert-Tucker/

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Up and Coming Opportunities

June 6 - “College-Ready Writers” Orientation – Student Center 5  – 7:30  p.m. (Applications closed)

June 20-24 – Advanced Institute – “College-Ready Writers,” Lake House, 8:30 a.m. – 2 p.m., daily.
Funded by the National Writing Project, scaling up practices for teaching argumentative writing.

June 23-24 – Basic Literacy Coaching Institute – McKenny Hall – 8:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
Using literacy-based protocols to support adult learning, we will explore how collaborative working relationships, mindsets, and coaching norms impact learning environments in a positive way. Learn from coaching demonstrations and practice related to over-arching philosophies of literacy. Applications welcome! https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/FKG999T 

June 27 – July 1 – Writing Retreat, Parsons Center, Lake Ann, MI (For EMWP teacher consultants).

July 11- 22 – Invitational Leadership Institute – Student Center 320, 8:30 a.m. – 3:00 p.m., daily.

July -11-15  Inkstains Middle School Writing Camp, (entering 6-8th grade). 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.
July 18-22 – Inkstains High School Writing Camp, (entering 9-12th grade). 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.

July 26-28 – Telling Our Stories/ Raising Our Voices (Advocacy workshop) McKenny Hall,
 Alumni and Tower Rooms, 9 a.m.- 3 p.m.  In this workshop, we’ll help you become part of that conversation as you learn how to develop your personal stories into a more public narrative, starting from anecdotes and building toward an action plan.  By the end of day 3, you should have an action plan to take back to your classroom and school. Applications Welcome! https://sites.google.com/site/emichwp/research-advocacy/advocacy

August 3, 4 – Basic Literacy Coaching Institute -McKenny Hall,  8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. (see above)

August 15 & 16 –Building a Sustainable Coaching Network in Your District, McKenny Hall,

8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.  In efforts to train and hire high-quality coaching talent, educators and teacher leaders will learn how to build a systematic approach to their coaching program. Establish a relevant, scaffolded approach for PLCs that emphasizes teaching and learning about literacy instruction at all grade levels.  https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/F9MXBBF 
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2X the Opportunity: Writing Retreats For Us All

 The summer retreat will be Tuesday, June 28th - Friday, July 1st.  

The fall retreat will be on Friday, October 14-Sunday, October 16th

Please send e-RSVPs to angela.k.knight@gmail.com to reserve your sleeping lodge bunk. 
Your registration will be confirmed when your payment is received. 

The retreat costs $40 before June 1st for summer and before September 15th for fall. Late registration will be $50 after June 1st for summer and after September 15th for fall. 

Please WRITE the check to EMWP.  

Please MAIL the check to 
Angela Knight
7364 Brookridge Dr.
West Bloomfield, MI 48322
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Disciplinary Literacies Institute

by Cathy Fleischer

Once again this summer, we invite teachers from all disciplines to join EMU college faculty for three days of exploration into writing in the disciplines: learning together what it means to write in our various subject areas and how we can help students make smooth transitions from subject area to subject area and from middle and high school to college.  The past three years of institutes have been eye-opening for all participants:  College faculty coming to understand more clearly the demands of schools, testing, and curriculum along with middle and high school teachers learning what college faculty are really looking for in their students’ writing.  At the center of this work is a spirit of inquiry and collaboration as we try to figure out new ways of teaching that will support disciplinary expectations and to reimagine assignments and units we can use in our classrooms.

Join us for the three days:  June 28-30 on EMU campus.  This work is especially valuable for interdisciplinary teams across a school or district, but individuals are welcome as well.  Sign up at https://www.smore.com/uu6u1.
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Advocacy Workshop: Telling Our Stories/Raising Our Voice

By Cathy Fleischer

For the past two summers, committed teachers who are frustrated with the public narrative about teaching have spent three days learning to become Everyday Advocates: discovering ways to frame their stories, experiences, and knowledge into messages and actions that help change the minds of others.  These teachers have begun to shift the conversation in their schools and communities about the best ways to teach reading and writing, the problems inherent in mandated assessment, the structure of middle school curriculum, and more—and have done so in ways that are smart, safe, and savvy. 

This summer, we’ll continue the journey to make Everyday Advocacy a part of even more teachers’ lives as a new group will participate in another three day training:  July 26-28 on EMU’s campus.  We already have teachers from around the country joining us, and there are just a few more spaces left.  Contact Cathy Fleischer at cathy.fleischer@emich.edu for more information or check out the application form at http://www.emichwp.org/research-advocacy/advocacy.

And if you can’t make the workshop, but are interested in this new way of thinking about teacher professionalism, be sure to look at the new Everyday Advocacy website that Cathy is developing for NCTE.  (https://teachertoolkitblog.wordpress.com/) The website prominently  features  the work we’ve being doing, with examples from some of the amazing teachers who have participated over the past two years.
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Disciplinary Literacy: PD for the Up & Coming

by David Kangas

What is disciplinary literacy? On a recent wintry morning, a  group of students from Bill Tucker’s English 408 class, Cathy Fleischer, Michelle McLemore, Jeff Taylor and David Kangas, all  gathered together to explore  this very question. Disciplinary Literacy emphasizes that writing and being a writer in different disciplines requires that we let students in on the practices-- the ways of knowing and believing specific to the disciplines we teach.

Cathy Fleischer shared how EMU teachers from different disciplines were collaborating to explore writing within their disciplines; she also offered insight on the challenges students face in the transition from secondary writing to college. Disciplinary literacy emphasizes that teachers need to share with students how real world writers fashion genre and voice within their disciplines. For example, young scientists need to know what is implicit in composing a lab report, or how we communicate the knowledge we make in literary study using blogs.

Disciplinary literacy provides students with ways of connecting things, and Jeff Taylor presented to everyone how he supports middle school scientists with a writing project that explores how claims are made in scientific arguments. Michelle McLemore demonstrated how she engaged her students in an authentic writing experience by providing opportunities to write and research psychology and community problems. David Kangas shared his version of the literature workshop, and how he teaches both texts and student writers in studying literary texts. In each presentation, teachers shared what they found valuable when teaching writing and the ways of knowing, believing and action required by these values.  After these presentations everyone circulated to explore student artifacts and to describe what they found, leading to questions about the teaching of writing and learning. The morning was truly professional development for all. If anyone in the EMU community wants to learn more, Cathy Fleischer will be running a Disciplinary Institute again this summer.

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Positions filled for 2016-2017

For the 2016 Summer Leadership Institute (July 11-22, 2016) with one 

afternoon pre-institute meeting in May and five Continuity meetings in 

  1. Institute Coach
    Assists director with planning, teaching and coaching the Summer 
   Leadership Institute and co-leads continuity meetings. Graduate credit 
   available, but tuition not included. 
   Stipend: $1,500. 

    Kristin Smith

  1. Technology Assistant
    Supports technology integration in the Summer Leadership Institute 
    Stipend: $ 625.

by Karen Chichester

For the two summer writing camps, July 11-15, and 18-22, 2016

Director of Youth Programs
Plans summer writing camps for middle school and high school students, 
recruits and trains teachers,supervises camps, prepares financial and grant 
reports, recommends new programs supporting secondary writers. 
Stipend: $2,000

Aimee Eldon

For year-around sustaining of programs

  1.  Website Manager: Keeps www emichwp.org updated and provides                     instruction for program leaders to update their own web pages.                             Stipend: $1,000
Karen Chichester

  1. Youth and Family Programs Coordinator
Administers promotion and registration of Inkstains Writing Camp                                       and mentoring, deploying, and compensation of teacher consultants                                 in the Family Literacy Initiative.  
Stipend: $ 6-8,000, contingent on funding. 

Kim Pavlock
  1. Media Editor
         Solicits and prepares articles and announcements for three online                                                newsletters and website.    
         Stipend: $700.

         Michelle McLemore

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Summer Camp Preview: EMWP's Inkstains Writing Camp

by Kimberly Pavlock, TC’92

Inkstains applications started coming in weeks ago, and, as always, we’re thrilled to see registrations from returning campers as well as new campers!  Young writers tell us why they value their week of writing time at EMU so much.  As one high school camper explained, “Inkstains offers opportunities that you wouldn't normally do on your own like listen to a song and use that as inspiration for your writing.  It pushes you to try new things, and you become a better writer because of it.  The adults in charge were more like older friends than instructors and I felt comfortable taking risks and sharing my writing.  My ideas and overall quality of my writing are better now.”

We still have spots available in both the middle and high school sessions of Inkstains.  The middle school session (for incoming grades 6-8) runs July 11–15, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.  The high school session (for incoming grades 9-12) runs July 18-22, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Students interested in applying should complete the following steps:
  •        Fill out the application form included in the Inkstains 2016 brochure.  The brochure is available on the EMWP website.
  •        Include a short piece of polished writing (1-4 pages in length).
  •        Submit one letter of recommendation from a current or former teacher.  (Emails of support from teachers are also welcome.  Please email Kim Pavlock at kpavlock@emich.edu.)
  •      Enclose a check for $225 for camp tuition made payable to the Eastern Michigan Writing Project. ($200 for each additional sibling). The tuition rate increases to $245 for applications postmarked after June 20.

·         Send completed application to
Eastern Michigan Writing Project
c/o Inkstains Writer’s Camp
612 Pray-Harrold
Eastern Michigan University
Ypsilanti, MI 48197

We hope all EMWP TCs will share this opportunity with their students.  If you have any questions, please contact Kim Pavlock at kpavlock@emich.edu.
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Saturday, February 6, 2016

Welcome to the Winter 2016 EMWP Edition!

 Opportunities Unfolding &  Experiences Shared: 
EMWP Still Going Strong!

EMWP Summer Institute: Initiatives in Writing...July 11-22 

EMWP Summer Institute: Telling Our Stories... July 26-28 

Literacy Coaching Institutes  (Introductory & Advanced ) 

EdCamp 2015: A Camp Collage 

Digital Conferencing During the Writing Process 

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EdCamp 2015: A Collage

The Big Choice
EdCamp--EMWP 101

Getting the pitch: This will be awesome!
Gathering Freebees

Morning Session

Peddling Literacy

EdCamp Perpetrators
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Telling Our Stories/Raising Our Voices:
From Anecdote to Action

An Eastern Michigan Writing Project Summer Institute
                       July 26-28, 2016          9am – 3pm each day
McKenny Hall, Alumni and Tower Rooms, EMU Campus

Sadly, the ongoing conversation about school reform too often leaves out the voices of teachers—those who are most intimately acquainted with the day-to-day issues that impact students and their learning. We believe that these voices are essential ones for policy makers to hear, but we recognize as well the pressures on teachers to remain silent.

How can teachers safely enter the conversation?  In this workshop, we’ll help you become part of that conversation as you learn how to develop your personal stories into a more public narrative, starting from anecdotes and building toward an action plan.  By the end of day 3, you should have an action plan to take back to your classroom and school.

The workshop is facilitated by Dr. Cathy Fleischer, EMWP co-director and author of Teachers Organizing for Change.

Who can apply? To apply, please feel out the accompanying form by May 1, 2016.  If more than 25 apply, teachers will be selected based on three criteria: (1) commitment to the topic; (2) school and subject area representation (i.e., diversity in grade level; school location; school size, etc.); and (3) connection to the NWP network.

Is there a cost?  The Institute costs $75 for the three days and is limited to 25 participants.

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In Medias Res: Meeting the Students Where & When They Need It

How to support young writers while they draft outside of class? A collaborative googledoc and chat stream can offer reassurance, immediate feedback, and collective empowerment. 

So what does it look like?  The first night students are assigned to draft,  advertise evening on-line hours and identify the Googledoc students should access. Across the top of the page will be an icon for each student as they access the page.  Once there, they can ask questions in the sidebar chat or post samples of their work on the page to workshop together. 

The "editing suggestion" button marks the teacher's suggestions in green while retaining the students' original phrasing. For others, you may choose to highlight a phrase and use the "comment" button which places the suggestions to the side of the document.

Anyone can quickly post links to specific resources or screencastify videos. You can even invite different students to share their thoughts on one student's question allowing you to not be the sage on the stage but just one of several "writers" in the group.

The first night tutoring session I was pleased to find 15-20 students checking in during the time period. What I hadn't anticipated was that multiple Google chats would spring up. Having the resources accessible online allowed for the students from different classes to bump into each other and strike up authentic talk about the directions, their topics, and craft.

I'm sure there may be other conferencing software out there to discover, but for now, Googledocs is where I'll be meeting to support my students when and where they need it.

For the full blog, visit 
Michelle McLemore is a 1997 EMWP TC. She currently teaches English and Social Studies at Onsted High School and recently taught online for Michigan Virtual University this fall.  Read more!

Do You Have a Budding Future as a Literacy Coach?

The Groundhog says it's going to be an early spring, and with that comes the fun in planning how the plants will grow and what summer adventures will surprise us. But there's no surprise that EMWP is running multiple cohorts of its Literacy Coaching Institutes for 2016. With the initiatives and funding allocated for training high-quality literacy coaches for Michigan's elementary (and secondary) schools, EMWP is taking its institutes center-stage to be a leader in providing coaching collaborations that center around literacy instruction and support for teachers.

1. As an introduction to understanding coaching mindsets and practices, the Basic Literacy Coaching Institutes will focus on basic knowledge of coaching to enhance learning in classrooms and in professional settings. Using research-based information and literacy-based protocols to engage participants, teachers, staff developers, school improvement teams, department chairs, coaches, and administrators will see how the features of coaching opportunities are at every corner of education. Participants will have time to practice coaching and reflective writing related to the beginning of their journey as highly-effective coach. This session is offered twice during the summer with a registration fee of $265/person, which also includes parking and morning refreshments. 

June 20 & 21 from 8:30 to 3:30 pm at McKenny Hall
August 3 & 4 from 8:30 to 3:30 pm at McKenny Hall

2. For the educator with some prior knowledge of coaching and seeking to Build a Sustainable Coaching Network at the District Level, participants can register for our new institute, which allows them to engage in a deeper understanding of adult learning, theories of change, and coaching principles that support these effective learning practices at the school level.

This institute will also address the accountability measures outlined for Michigan schools related to managing early literacy practices and assessments as well as protocols that build the longitudinal and horizontal supports for the district. Well-suited for coaches and administrators looking for collaborative insight into coaching networks that work and the multiple means of assessing professional learning, the two-day institute acknowledges the need for teachers, coaches, and administrators to be like-minded in practices and philosophies of high-quality job-embedded learning. 

Teacher leaders, administrators, coaches, and staff developers will practice coaching with other participants and engage in constructive dialogue about the positive culture, systematic approaches, and data-based outcomes that coaching offers educators and students. Time will be devoted to designing coaching plans, coaching evaluations, and coaching protocols. At $285/person, EMWP will offer reduced-rate coaching supports for the 2016-2017 academic year for schools who enroll in this institute. Parking is included as well as morning refreshments.

August 15 & 16 from 8:30 to 3:30 pm at McKenny Hall

For further information, please contact Julia Keider, Lead Instructional and Literacy Coach for the Institutes at juliakeider@gmail.com

Registration of the Institutes are available on the EMWP website at http://www.emichwp.org/professional-learning/coaching
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EMWP Summer Institute: Initiatives in Writing

Eastern Michigan University – Student Center 320;
 July 11 – 22, 2016, 9 a.m.–3 p.m., Monday- Friday

We invite all teachers of writing, pre-K-college to join us for two weeks of

• Writing, as well as responding to each other’s writing
• Reading and talking about current research in the teaching of writing
·   Exploring the possible roles of literacy leadership
• Developing research questions about teaching writing (wonderings about our contexts)

To bring our questions into our classrooms, we will schedule five Continuity Meetings during the school year, including a final showcase of teacher research.

Tuition and fees: $1,987.90 for three graduate credits. Other fees may apply.
[+ One credit for Continuity].
Non-credit participation is $500; all participants receive a $400 scholarship from the National Writing Project.  50 State Clock Hours available. 
Send (attached) pre-registration to Bill Tucker, facilitator, by March 1. Billing will follow.

Spread the word!

Access the Registration Form 

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