CRWP’s November Feature Spotlight

Congratulations to Troy Hicks for being CRWP’s  November Feature Spotlight. Read about Troy below.
Troy Hicks Portrait (2018)
Fortunately, I can say that I have been part of the Chippewa River Writing Project since it was just a vision. As I was finishing my doctoral work and had already established relationships with others in the National Writing Project, the idea of bringing an NWP site to CMU was part of that conversation when I was hired. To that end, my most memorable moment with CRWP came when I got the call, on my birthday, that we would, indeed, become a site, a reflection I shared in a post for the NWP Archives (http://our.nwp.org/november-10-2008/)
Working with students and helping them build their arguments, through both words, sentences, and paragraphs as well as through images, sounds, links, and other multimodal elements. As writers work, they discover what it is that they really want to say, and then they begin again. Mentoring students through that process is both a challenge and a joy, making those moments in writing conferences and when offering feedback some of the most powerful experiences for me as a teacher of writing.
In the past year, I have been pleased to co-author two books with CRWP colleagues. In February, Jeremy Hyler, Wiline Pangle, and I celebrated the release of Ask, Explore, Write!: An Inquiry-Driven Approach to Science and Literacy Learning (https://www.taylorfrancis.com/books/9780429275265). Then, in June, my book with Andy Schoenborn, Creating Confident Writers: For High School, College, and Life (https://wwnorton.com/books/9780393714166/null) hit the shelves. For both of these projects, I have been fortunate enough to learn with and from my collaborators, and we continue to think about how best to support student writers, from middle school through high school, and beyond.
At the moment, my favorite author is educational technologist Neil Selwyn. His books (such as Distrusting Educational Technology <https://www.routledge.com/Distrusting-Educational-Technology-Critical-Questions-for-Changing-Times/Selwyn/p/book/9780415708005>) and articles (such as Postdigital living in the age of Covid-19: unsettling what we see as possible <https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s42438-020-00166-9>) remind me that, for all that it can do, ed tech continues to become more and more problematic. His critical stance is one that I find helpful as I try to frame my own arguments about when, why, and how to use technology for teaching and learning.
Focus your feedback. It is in our nature to want to give students lots of feedback, as we are likely a bit geeky in that way, craving tons of response to our own writing. However, too much feedback can be overwhelming for writers, and a drain on you. Provide timely, specific, goal-oriented feedback at various stages of the writing process, and model the kinds of writerly moves that you would expect students to emulate. In doing so, you are helping them “feed forward,” putting those ideas into practice.

CRWP’s October Feature Spotlight

 

This month we would like to congratulate our October Feature Spotlight, Teacher Consultant, Jeremy Hyler. Below you can find more infoJeremy Hylerrmation about Jeremy. Feel free to follow Jeremy on Twitter or Instagram.

Twitter: @jeremybballer

Instagram: jeremhyler40

I currently teach at Fulton Middle School in Middleton, Michigan, and have been teaching for 22 years.

I have been with CRWP for 10 years now. One of my most memorable experiences was being able to travel to Kansas City and work with like-minded writing project consultants from across the nation. They were so innovative and creative. It fed my inner learning soul and I wanted more. It kept the fire alive for me to keep teaching. 

My favorite thing about teaching writing is watching the growth in my students. When you see a student go from thinking they can only write two or three sentences, and they eventually find out they have it in them to write paragraphs and even pages of writing.  Seeing their confidence makes all the late nights grading papers worth it. 

My most recent work is Ask, Explore, Write. The work was a collaborative effort between Dr. Hick, Dr. Pangle, and me. The book is about science and literacy.  It is a result of all the great work that has been done with our Beaver Island Institute. As a teacher-writer, it is yet another example of what I can share with my students about the writing process. I love being able to share with my students my writing and the struggles I go through as a writer. I want to be able to relate to them and let them know writing is not easy but can be rewarding. 


 

 

 

 

My favorite author is Jon Gordon because he has a lot of wisdom to share about life and being a great leader. Right now my favorite book is Ego is the Enemy by Ryan Holiday. That book has taught me so much about stepping back and not getting in over my head. I have learned to say no to projects and other tasks that I have been asked to do. I must first, do the work I have well before trying new things. 

If I had five or six words for future teachers it would be: Do what is best for students!

Too many times I see others who have their own agendas and don’t always do what is best for the students who are in front of us every day. Keep the students at the center of the decisions you make in your classroom.

Continuity of (Our Own Professional) Learning – Spring 2020 Webinar Series

CRWP - Continuity of Learning - Social Media Post

CRWP - Continuity of Learning - Social Media PostCritical and Creative Teaching in Response to the COVID-19 Crisis

A series of free webinars for K-12 educators (Flyer)

  • Tuesdays | 4:00 to 5:00 PM EST
  • 8 Sessions, April 21 to June 8, 2020
  • Via Zoom Video Conferencing, Up to 100 Participants
  • Recorded sessions will be archived and available after the initial webinar

In these unique and unprecedented times, K-12 educators are being tasked with providing experiences for their students that range from “enrichment” activities to fully online, synchronous learning sessions. As we all work through a design and development phase of flexible learning options,  we hope to share knowledge, insights, and activities that could be useful for other educators.

This series of weekly webinars will be offered as live, synchronous one-hour Zoom sessions on Tuesdays at 4:00 PM EST, and will be archived for later viewing. Teacher consultants leading these sessions are, like you, working under “stay home, stay safe” orders and are working to engage students in meaningful learning activities.

We will participate in activities together, as learners, and have time for questions, conversation, and planning next steps in your own teaching context. Recognizing the challenges of remote learning, we will address strategies for supporting students’ socio-emotional health, our own struggles with the abrupt end of the school year, and other concerns that continue to emerge during the COVID-19 pandemic.

More than just “moving online,” these sessions are designed to provide interactive, web-based learning opportunities, so active participation during the scheduled sessions is encouraged through webcams and microphones. Teachers leading these session are donating their time, talent, and expertise, and look forward to learning with you. Sessions will include:

  • Session 1: Remote Learning without Ubiquitous Internet Access (Tue, Apr 21st at 4:00 PM EST)
  • Session 2: Reasonable Expectations for Remote Learning (Tue, Apr 28th at 4:00 PM EST)
  • Session 3: Facilitating Effective Online Class Sessions Through Video Chat (Tue, May 5th at 4:00 PM EST)
  • Session 4: Promising Experiences for Student Writers (Tue, May 12th at 4:00 PM EST)
  • Session 5: PBL at Home: Designing Meaningful Research Projects (Tue, May 19th at 4:00 PM EST)
  • Session 6: Learning How to Learn Online as Professionals (Tue, May 26th at 4:00 PM EST)
  • Session 7: Staying Connected as Teacher-Writers (Tue, June 2nd at 4:00 PM EST)
  • Session 8: Open Forum: Next Steps in Learning Continuity (Tue, June 9th at 4:00 PM EST)

These sessions are being offered free, yet in order to participate live, in Zoom, RSVPs are required using the Google Form below. Questions? Please contact CRWP Director, Troy Hicks at <troy.hicks@cmich.edu>.

Finally, if you would like to support the Chippewa River Writing Project, we would appreciate any donation that you able to offer through CMU’s online giving portal.

CMU Online Giving Portal Screenshot


Announcing Our 2020 Beaver Island Institute

Beaver Island 2020 Flyer (Link to PDF)

Update: May 6, 2020

Thank you again for your interest in our 2020 Beaver Island Institute. While we were supposed to have a message from CMU’s President about the status of Summer II classes last Friday, he chose to delay that decision.

With no clear picture on what plans are for CMU’s policy on social distancing into the late summer, nor a prediction on what state and federal guidelines may be, both scientific evidence and common sense suggest that it would be nearly impossible to run our institute in the ways that we would want to do it. Thus, we need to cancel.

We thank you for your interest in our 2020 institute, and hope to invite you to another opportunity in 2021.


Update: April 18, 2020

As with many programs this summer, we are still waiting for an official “go” or “no go” decision from Central Michigan University about the viability of Summer II activities going on as planned, or being pushed online/cancelled. We will keep applications for our Beaver Island Institute open until May 1st, 2020, at which point we will make a decision about whether the institute will occur. For now, we ask interested educators to please complete our form below so we can be in touch.


Update: March 31, 2020

While we are not 100% sure that our event will happen this summer, and need to be patient before making a final decision in early May, we are still collecting information from teachers who are interested in joining our 2020 Beaver Island Institute, happening August 2-7, 2020. Please complete our form below so we can be in touch!



Beaver Island 2020 Flyer (Link to PDF)
Beaver Island 2020 Flyer (Link to PDF)

Experience a unique, one-week (August 2-7, 2020) professional learning opportunity at CMU’s Biological Station on Beaver Island in Lake Michigan.

Sixteen K-12 teachers will participate in collaborative, inquiry-based workshops and field experiences to identify and integrate key standards from STEAM-related fields (science, technology, engineering, art, and mathematics). While we encourage educators to participate in the institute with a colleague from his/her own school, individual educators are also welcome to apply.

Registration for this experience (including ferry service to and from the island, one week of room and board at the CMU Biological Station, and workshop expenses) is $900. A $100 non-refundable deposit is due by May 1, with remaining costs due by July 15. Participants will be responsible for travel to and from Charlevoix, Michigan.

Need to ask for support from your administrator? Use our customizable letter!

We ask that all teachers interested in attending the institute apply by completing this Google form (also embedded below).

Partial funding for teachers from the Macomb ISD and counties in the Great Lakes Bay Region are available. In addition to basic contact info and demographics, applicants seeking additional funding from MISD or the Great Lakes Bay Region will reply to the following prompts in 500 words or less:

  • How are you currently thinking about and planning for the integration of STEAM-related standards?
  • How will your participation in this institute help you meet goals for the integration of STEAM -related standards in 2020-21?

Deadline for initial interest form: 5 p.m. Friday, April 17, 2020. Participants who are selected for the institute will be notified by April 30th, and the down payment will be due on May 1st. Graduate credit will be available at additional cost (pending approval).

Questions? Please contact:

Dr. Troy Hicks
Director, Chippewa River Writing Project
troy.hicks@cmich.edu