Creating a Sustainable and Liberatory English Classroom
This summer, reimagine your high school English classroom alongside three teachers who have been working to create sustainable, liberatory classrooms that energize rather than drain teachers and students. Explore student-led grading and student-centered reading and writing practices that you can tailor to the needs of your students. Whether you can attend one or both sessions, we welcome you to join us in crafting classrooms that honor us all as teachers and learners.
Summer Open Programs
Kate Flowers Rossner
Over the course of her 26-year career, Kate has focused on engaging students in a joyful and vigorous classroom, filled with authentic writing and reading opportunities. Kate served as a Heinemann Fellow from 2016-2018, focusing her action research on independent reading. She earned National Board Certification in 2003, became a Teacher Consultant with the San Jose Area Writing Project in 2013, and earned the California Association of Teachers of English and the National Council of Teachers of English Classroom Excellence Award in 2016.
Maichen has over 21 years of experience teaching everything from Comparative Literature at the University of Michigan to a combined first and second grade class in a small rural school district in Sonoma County. These experiences have inspired her mission to cultivate a space for all students to realize themselves as readers and writers. She is now Co-chair of the English Department at Santa Clara High School, where she is focused on sharing student-led learning and grading to more teachers.
In her 21 years of teaching, Elizabeth has spent most of her career teaching in lower income, predominantly Latino high schools. Her long term goal has been to bring the kind of literature and experiences into the classroom where students can see themselves centered, and become authentic and capable participants in the creation and critique of various texts. This has inspired her to create and teach entire curriculums, including a Chicano Lit. course, in places where those curriculums did not previously exist. She is now Co-chair of the English Department at Santa Clara High School, where she is focused on sharing student-led learning and grading to more teachers.
Part 1: Creating Sustainable and Liberatory Writing Classrooms
June 12-14, 2023
For Teachers of High School
How can we support the growth of the writers in our care without burning ourselves out? How do we get our students to write in the first place, and how do we help them write pieces that matter to them, pieces that are a pleasure to read? And perhaps most importantly, how do we honor each and every student’s full humanity, recognizing the wealth of valid language experience all students bring with them when they walk in the door?
How do we get our writers to write all of this without drowning in the paper load?
Partner with Kate Flowers Rossner, Elizabeth Kelly, and Maichen Liu-Grossman as we share approaches to creating liberatory writing classrooms that infuse both students and teachers with the energy that comes from authentic, student-centered writing and humane grading practices. Together we will explore how to create weekly routines and supportive small writing groups, coach students in getting writing on the page and engaging in meaningful revision, and use assessment to center students’ growth. Want help reimagining the writing in your classroom? All participants will have access to coaching sessions during the workshop and will leave with many resources for their own classrooms.
This is part one of our Sustainable and Equitable High School English Classroom workshop series; part two, focusing on reading, is the complement to this workshop. Teachers need not take both sessions, but taken together will give you a complete framework for a sustainable, equitable classroom that centers students.
Part 2: Creating Sustainable and Liberatory Reading Classrooms
June 27-29, 2023
For Teachers of High School
Reading is the beating heart of our English classrooms but is often fraught with challenges. How do we get students actually to do the assigned reading? How do we support them in the development of their independent reading? How do we handle the limitations placed on us by what texts are approved and available for our students? How do we create inclusive reading experiences for our students, and how do we disrupt texts that are not inclusive?
And perhaps most importantly, how do we help our students to think deeply about the texts they read?
Partner with Kate Flowers Rossner, Elizabeth Kelly, and Maichen Liu-Grossman in part two of their Sustainable and Liberatory English Classrooms as we share approaches to creating liberatory reading classrooms that infuse both students and teachers with the energy that comes from robust discussions about literature. Together we will explore how to create weekly routines and supportive small discussion groups, engage students in meaningful analysis, and use assessment to center students’ growth. Want help reimagining the reading students do in your classroom? All participants will have access to coaching sessions during the workshop and will leave with many resources for their own classrooms.
Required Texts (purchased by SJAWP as part of administrative fee):
Part 1 - Point-less: An English Teacher’s Guide to More Meaningful Grading by Sarah Zerwin
Part 2 - Reading with Presence: Crafting Meaningful, Evidence-Based Reading Responses by Marilyn Pryle.
SJAWP charges a $50 fee to cover materials and administrative costs. Teachers who would like to purchase units from San Jose State University will be contacted by our admin team prior to the Summer Open Program to register for the course. Teachers will have the option of purchasing up to three units at a cost of $150 per unit. This money will be collected by the SJSU Bursar's Office upon course registration.