Remix and reimagine literature
Our exciting Summer Institute returns for its eighth year to support a new cohort of players as they discover new ways to engage with literature through shared, artistic storytelling. This year's selected text -- In the Time of the Butterflies by Julia Alvarez — offers a unique opportunity to explore a story that blends historical fact and fiction, examining how resistance can become revolution, and the ways in which art and activism are entwined.
The Literacy Unbound Institute is comprised of arts-integrated remix, transmedia storytelling, and literary studies — a terrific way for teachers to explore innovative, project-based pedagogical approaches to literature and history. The unconventional nature of the institute will allow you gain firsthand experience with the principles and practices of Literacy Unbound while also exploring ways to transfer these practices to your own classroom.
Throughout the month of July, we'll invite this year's players to let their creativity shine — on their own as they read and respond to this year's text, and then in collaboration as they weave together their artistic talents to create an original, co-created film based on In the Time of the Butterflies. Alongside our talented facilitators and professional teaching artists, players will have ample opportunity to discover all the ways in which stories can be unpacked and reimagined.
Thoughtful, inventive educators will find an outlet for their creativity and curiosity at this unique institute, which will pair them with instructional experts, professional artists, and high school students from around the world for an exclusive collaboration. As a teacher player in the institute, you'll participate in an unmatched multimodal experience that will expand your understanding of instructional possibilities as you remix this year's selected text — In the Time of the Butterflies by Julia Alvarez — and co-create an original film.
During this institute, you'll be able to:
All players will navigate a blend of asynchronous (on their own) and synchronous (with others) opportunities throughout the institute, culminating in a live film premiere on July 29. Following the film premiere, we will gather for a final time on July 30 for a closing reflection and a chance to say goodbye.
You will be asked to participate in the following ways:
Inspired by the true story of the four Mirabal sisters who come of age in the Dominican Republic during the Rafael Trujillo dictatorship. Three of those sisters–known as “las mariposas” or “the butterflies” in the underground–become key figures in the resistance against Trujillo’s ruthless regime. In a review of the 25th anniversary edition, Anjanette Delgado writes in the New York Journal of Books:
With a belief in the power of play in the classroom, our team of facilitators and teaching artists seek to expand traditional approaches to reading and writing, helping teachers create innovative instruction that helps students engage deeply with literature. We can't wait to meet you!
What makes a great teacher player at our Summer Institute? A willingness to work alongside students in a creative, generative online environment; a desire to learn from experienced teaching artists who specialize in innovative instruction; and an interest in exercising your own artistry as a multimodal creator, crafting original units of study for your classroom throughout the process.
All K-12 educators are welcome to apply for the 2022 Summer Institute! We find that the content of the institute speaks most closely to high school English, History, TESOL, Special Education, and Drama teachers who are wondering how they can:
If this sounds like you, submit your application below! Early decision applicants should submit their application by May 2, 11:59PM EST, and expect to hear our decision by May 9. Regular decision applicants should submit their application by June 3, 11:59PM EST, and expect to hear our decision by June 10.
Is there an application fee?
There is no fee for teachers to apply for the institute; however, teachers will be required to pay a $50 registration fee if selected for this year's cohort.
Do I need to be a teacher in NYC to apply?
No, you do not need to be from NYC to apply for this institute! Applicants from all locations will be considered for this year's cohort. The 2022 Summer institute will take place virtually with synchronous (online together at the same time) and asynchronous (online together at different times) which makes it easy for people from around the world to participate without leaving home.
Do I need to be familiar with the selected text before applying?
Not at all! Reading the text is part of participating in the institute.
I already applied — when will I find out if I've been accepted?
If you applied by the early decision deadline (May 2), you will be notified by May 9. If you applied for the regular decision deadline (after May 2 but before June 3), you will be notified by June 10.
In the meantime, you’re welcome to email Adele Bruni Ashley at email@example.com with any questions.
Does it cost anything to participate in the institute?
Yes, teachers will be required to pay a $50 registration fee if selected for this year's cohort. This will be due by the start of the institute.
What equipment do I need to participate?
At a minimum, all players will need to equip themselves with:
How much time should I commit to this institute?
During the first two weeks of the institute, all of our collaboration will be asynchronous, and will take approximately two hours per day.
During the second two weeks, players will commit to two hours of synchronous collaboration, as well as approximately two hours of asynchronous creation. Teacher players will also engage in PD sessions during this time, with each session being approximately 1 hour in length.
Are there any in-person elements to this institute?
No; all components of this year's institute are taking place online.
What do I do during the asynchronous portion of the institute?
During this period, you’ll focus on exploring this year’s text, In the Time of the Butterflies, and responding to our Invitations to Create, which will prompt you to reflect on and engage with the text, jumpstarting your creative process.
Where can I find the synchronous institute schedule?
Scroll up to the schedule section to view an outline of the time commitment involved in the institute, as well as an estimated daily schedule for the synchronous portion (July 18 - 29).
No schedule is available for the asynchronous portions of the institute, as each player will be moving at their own pace, at times of their choosing.
What happens on the day after the film premiere?
All players will reconvene on July 30 to reflect on the institute and say our goodbyes.
Teachers will be with students during the morning of July 30 and then spend some time in the afternoon working on intensive curriculum development.
Will this institute offer CTLE credits?
Yes! We are able to offer 10 CTLE credits for NYS educators who are selected to be a part of this year's institute. If you're interested in receiving CTLE credits for your participation, please notify Adele Bruni Ashley (firstname.lastname@example.org) once selected for the 2022 cohort, and we'll walk you through the process.
Please note that there will be an additional fee for those interested in receiving CTLE credits.
Who can I contact with additional questions?
Please reach out to Adele Bruni Ashley at email@example.com.
Can I see examples of previous institutes?
Every institute is a little different, since it's shaped by the players involved, the space in which we create (physical or digital), and the text that we're working with. To get a sense of what it's been like to work with teaching artists and prepare for a performance, check out our video library, which includes highlights from past institutes.