Teachers’ writing institute returns to UTM

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After several years’ hiatus, the signature program of the West Tennessee Writing Project is back with the 2024 Summer “Mini” Institute, to be held July 8-11 on the campus of the University of Tennessee at Martin.
Scheduled for 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. daily Monday through Thursday, the institute focuses on ways to use writing to facilitate instruction in multiple content areas. Teachers in all subject areas are invited to attend the institute.
In the mornings, participants share demonstrations of effective teaching activities that involve writing. The afternoons are devoted to sharing and workshopping of ongoing drafts of teachers’ new writing.
The Summer “Mini” Institute is guided by the three tenets of the West Tennessee Writing Project:

  • Students will become better writers in all subjects if writing instruction improves.
  • Writing instruction will improve when teachers practice the art of writing on a regular basis.
  • The best teacher of a teacher is another excellent teacher.
    Registration is open to all K-12 teachers in all content areas. Educators not currently employed as teachers may also participate. There is no cost to participants, but spaces are limited to 12 teachers.
    Registration is available through the UT Martin Office of University Outreach and may be accessed at www.utm.edu/summerinstitute2024.
    “After working quietly behind the scenes in support of young writers for the past few years, I am glad that we can offer the program that was traditionally the heart of the writing project: the summer institute for teachers,” said West Tennessee Writing Project Director Dr. David Carithers. “Thanks to funding generated through our partnership with the Scholastic Alliance for Young Artists and Writers, we can offer this shortened version of the old four-week institute free of charge to teachers.”
    The West Tennessee Writing Project is an affiliate site of the National Writing Project, which has sites in most of the 50 states and many U.S. territories. The National Writing Project started in 1974 when the first summer institute in California brought together a group of teachers who wanted to help their students become better writers in all subjects.
    The West Tennessee Writing Project was formed in 1992 at the University of Tennessee at Martin under the direction of the late Dr. Margrethe Ahlschwede. Since then, more than 300 teachers have participated in the summer institutes.
    Carithers became the West Tennessee Writing Project director in 2007. The West Tennessee Writing Project is housed in the Department of English and Modern Foreign Languages.
    Questions may be directed to Carithers at dcarithe@utm.edu.

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