• Our Conversations Today are Swayed by Yesterday: What We've Learned Over the Years

    The Summer Literacy Institute was first held in 1991, and since that time, it has featured more than 100 nationally renown speakers who have led conversations on current topics and issues in literacy education.

    As proponents of literacy research and education, we are proud to share with you some of the highlights that we have gleaned from our featured presenters over the years:

    2016

    "Do we have a growth mindset about the whole child?" - Kristi Mraz

    "Deepen reading work to increase writing." - Mary Ehrenworth

    "Conferring is reactive teaching. Be deliberate about your instructional moves." - Dan Feigelson

    "Writing is like playing on paper." - Angela Johnson

    2015

    "Let's make nonfiction more playful." - Ralph Fletcher

    "Let's complicate things and write beyond the five-paragraph paper." - Katherine Bomer

    "Writing for the teacher doesn't yield the best results." - Nell Duke

    "Literacy is the heart and soul of social justice." - Fayneese Miller

    2014

    "Teach children to be independent together." - Peter Johnston

    "We have to know kids to know what to teach next." - Frank Serafini

    "Everyday ask yourself, 'Is what I'm doing benefitting the students?'" - Jennifer Serravallo

    2013

    "Kids show us what they know, we need to figure out what they are ready to learn.” - Michael Opitz

    “What do we value with the time we have?” - Debbie Miller

    2012

    “In all things be kind and truthful—cause no intentional harm.” - Lester Laminack

    “Oral language is a necessary ingredient for learning.” - Sharon Taberski

    2011

    “Reading is bigger than giving the right answer to someone else’s question.” - Franki Sibberson

    “Teach to read with power isn’t enough…intention and joy are needed.” - Kathy Collins

    2010

    “You fill yourself up with over-flowing and then you give it all back.” - E. B. Lewis

    2009

    “Readers are willing to struggle if they are comprehending. Struggles aren’t negative, embrace them.” - Ellin Oliver Keene

    2008

    “What we do outside of schools as readers should be what we do inside of school as readers.” - Nell Duke

    “Don’t look at boys’ writing as a problem to be managed.” - Ralph Fletcher

    2007

    “Before there can be revision, there needs to be vision.” - Katie Wood Ray

    “My kids are my manuals and I open up my pages every day to know what to do.” - Yvonne Arden

    2006

    “A writing conference is a conversation.” - Carl Anderson

    2005

    “Our brains gravitate toward patterns.” - Greg Tang

    2004

    “How is what I’m doing today helping these kids become better readers and writers?” - Regie Routman

    2003

    “Don’t be such a hurry to cover, slow down and hover.” - Lester Laminack

    2002

    “A child’s day needs to make sense.” - Sharon Taberski

    2001

    “Students cannot understand books that they cannot read.” - Richard Allington

    2000

    “You have to make your own recipe.” - Carmen Deedy

    1999

    “Writing is a way of life.” - Shelley Harwayne

    1998

    “Children learn what we teach, not what we think we teach.” - Katherine Mitchell Pierce

    1997

    "We’re here to teach kids, not trick them.” - Mem Fox

    1996

    “All of us have poetry in our souls.” - Georgia Heard

    1995

    “Learning is rooted in wonder.” - David and Phillis Whitin

    1994

    What’s significant to the learner may be very different than what’s significant to the testers.” - Linda Crafton

    1993

    “Books should address who children are, not what authors think children need.” - Mem Fox

    Don’t ‘cover material, uncover ideas.” - Yvonne Aarden