Announcement of 2009 Spring Break and Summer Teacher Institutes at the Library of Congress

The Library of Congress is now accepting applications for its 2009 Spring Break and Summer Teacher Institutes in Washington, D.C. The institutes will provide educators with the opportunity to work with the staff and facilities of the Library to discover primary sources on specific topics, and to explore ways to effectively integrate those sources into classroom teaching.

Participants in the Library’s Teacher Institutes will:

·        Discover Library of Congress primary source materials

·        Develop strategies for using primary source digital content in teaching

·        Engage in inquiry learning in hands-on workshops

·        Learn from Library of Congress subject matter experts and education specialists

·        Network with other teachers from across the country to share ideas and experiences

·        Leave with a plan for creating a primary source-based lesson or activity to be used with their students.

NEW : Spring Break Institutes

This year the Library will host two institutes in Spring 2009. Both will focus on Abraham Lincoln.

Session 1 March 3-5

Session 2 April 6-8

As the nation celebrates the bicentennial of Lincoln’s birth, take the opportunity to learn more about him and about the primary sources available at the Library. Participants will have the opportunity to view a Library exhibition that documents Lincoln’s life and explore Lincoln’s life through the use of photographs, maps, and documents. Participants will also have the opportunity to create inquiry-based instructional activities using resources from the Library of Congress Web site.  Please Note: For Session 1 only, during the second day participants will attend an all-day Lincoln symposium featuring William Lee Miller, James M. McPherson, Douglass L. Wilson, Lucas Morel, Lincoln and Harold Holzer and Elizabeth D. Leonard.


Summer Institute Sessions

Session 1 July 7-10      Advanced Session: Using Library Resources to Create Lessons

Teachers who have attended the Library’s previous summer institutes, or who have served as American Memory Fellows, now have the opportunity to build on their skills with this advanced institute. Participants will work closely with Library specialists to improve their skills in searching the Library’s Web site, to learn more about using collections at the Library, and to develop inquiry based primary source teaching materials for use in their own classrooms. In addition to attending training sessions with Library specialists, participants will undertake intensive individual research in the Library’s collections to discover primary source documents that support their teaching goals. By the conclusion of the institute, each participant will have created the initial stages of a lesson plan or other primary source-based learning experience that they can take with them and integrate into their teaching. For previous summer institute participants or American Memory Fellows only.


Session 2 July 15-17    Women’s History

This institute will examine documents that trace the diverse and complex roles played by women throughout the history of the United States. Participants will meet with women’s history specialists at the Library and examine original historical materials from the Library’s collections. Library staff will also guide participants in finding and using materials related to women’s history on the Library of Congress Web site, as well as exploring different ways to integrate those materials into the classroom.


Session 3 July 29-31   Going Global: Locating International Resources at the Library of Congress

Interested in incorporating primary sources into world history classroom activities? Unsure where to find resources that you can use? This session will introduce participants to the international resources that can be found at the Library. Participants will have the opportunity to visit some of the international studies reading rooms, work with the specialists from those reading rooms, and create inquiry-based activities using primary sources from the online collections.


Session 4 August 5-7   Incorporating Primary Sources into the Teaching Process

This institute will help teachers take advantage of the instructional power of primary sources. Though many teachers are familiar with the importance of primary sources, they are not sure how to use them in the classroom, how to develop inquiry-based lessons, or how to help students use them in projects. In this workshop, Library of Congress specialists will introduce participants to the unique characteristics of primary sources, while helping explore some of the millions of digitized primary sources available on the Library’s Web site. Participants will look at ways to introduce students to primary sources and how to incorporate them in inquiry based classroom activities.


The Summer Teacher Institutes are open to all grade 4-12 educators, including teachers, librarians and media specialists, and technology coordinators in public, public charter, private, or religiously affiliated schools, as well as home-schooling parents. Those college professors working with pre-service teachers are also welcome to apply. Content is geared to professionals working with students from upper elementary to high school.

No college or professional development credits are provided for those participating in the Teacher Institutes.

Participants may only attend one session and must have experience using the Internet for research. It is also strongly recommend that participants have some experience using PowerPoint or other presentation software.  The number of participants for each session is limited to 20. There is no charge for the institute or materials.

Participants will be responsible for transportation to and lodging in Washington, D.C.

The deadline to apply for the Spring Break Teacher Institutes is February 6, 2009

The deadline to apply for the Summer Teacher Institutes is March 13, 2009

Please visit our Web site to apply:

Please send any questions about the Teacher Institutes to


Posted on January 22, 2009, in Primary sources. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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