Reader's/Writer's Workshop for Middle and Secondary Classroom

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Registration Closed.
Agency: CESA 10
Agency Contact: Kristen Gundry
Agency Assistant: Ginny Shoemaker 715-720-2038
Location: CESA 10
725 West Park Avenue
Chippewa Falls, WI 54729
Facility: Conference Center (Rooms 1-2-3)
10/24/2018 09:00 AM - 03:30 PM

Learn about successful instructional strategies that will inspire your teaching and help you motivate more learners in your classroom. Your presenter, Ken Szymanski, doesn't claim to have all of the answers, but has been refining his approach to teaching middle school English for 20 years. Through constant revision, he's developed a teaching style that combines Six Traits, Nancie Atwell's Reader/Writer Workshop model, Jeff Anderson's sentence imitation exercises, along with his own ideas and experiences. All of this is blended in with examples from the classics, young adult literature, children’s literature, photography, popular music, and film. 
Long before your presenter became an English teacher, Ken Szymanski was hooked on writing. As a junior high school student, he served as editor of his school newspaper and also wrote "novels" in spiral notebooks. As a adult, he’s worked as a music journalist for the Eau Claire Leader-Telegram. He was a two-time “Grand Slam Champion” of the Eau Claire Running Water Poetry Slam. He has won multiple awards for his work with Volume One Magazine, including the Frank Smoot Lifetime Achievement Award. His writing can also be heard on Wisconsin Public Radio’s “Wisconsin Life” and on the 8-episode podcast “Bend in the River” (available on  
In his own classroom, Szymanski uses what one administrator referred to as the “Tom Sawyer method” for teaching writing. By sharing his own writing experiences and modeling the process, Szymanski motivates students to join in the “fun.” Through weekly Reader and Writer Workshops, his students discover who they are, where they come from, and where they are going...all through the written word. 
In the most practical way he can, he will take you through writing activities that have helped him to reach both reluctant and aspiring writers and readers. He will show you how he uses Reader Workshop to help students read like writers…and Writer Workshop to help students write like readers. This will be a hands-on presentation taking you through every step of the writing process. You will be doing the activities. You will be reading. You will be writing. In this session--like in Szymanski's classroom--everyone is in it together.


Learning outcomes include:

  • Participants will learn how and why one teacher implements Reader's and Writer's Workshop in his 8th grade classroom.
  • Participants will go through several mini-lessons designed to help students become better writers and more engaged readers.
  • Participants will participate on "both sides" of the one-on-one conferences that are the heart of Readerss/Writers Workshop.
  • Participants will leave with a few of their own writing pieces started; pieces that could be used as mentor texts with their own students.

This session is offered at a cost of $50 per participant to those CESA 10 districts participating in Title II including Abbotsford, Bloomer, Bruce, Cadott, Colby, Cornell, Eleva-Strum, Gilman, Gilmanton, Greenwood, Ladysmith, Lake Holcombe, Loyal, Neillsville, New Auburn, Osseo-Fairchild, Owen-Withee, Spencer, and Thorp.  The discount will be automatically applied.

The cost for all other CESA 10 districts is $350 per participant.  The cost for those outside of CESA 10 is $500 per participant.



Teacher Standards
WES1The teacher understands the central concepts, tools of inquiry, and structures of the disciplines he or she teaches and can create learning experiences that make these aspects of subject matter meaningful for pupils.
WES3The teacher understands how pupils differ in their approaches to learning and the barriers that impede learning and can adapt instruction to meet the diverse needs of pupils, including those with disabilities and exceptionalities.