The Vermont BL Campus has been hopping this summer! There have been more guest speakers, readers, and workshops this summer than ever before, to celebrate the 20th anniversary of The Bread Loaf Teacher Network. Guest readers included Poet Laureate and Pulitzer Prize Winner Natasha Trethewey, poet and activist Martín Espada, and Castle Freeman, Jr., the award-winning author of the acclaimed novel Go with Me. Guest speakers included nationally known environmentalist Bill McKibben; Andrea Lunsford, the Louise Hewlett Nixon Professor of English at Stanford; and Bread Loaf alumni Maria Fahey and Marcella Pixley.
There were also numerous workshops this summer, including “Making Ethics Part of Teaching English,” presented by Jim Sabin; “Revising Prose,” by John Fyler; “Teaching Jane Austen in a Cinematic Age,” by Claudia Johnson; “Fictions of Conversion,” by Jeffrey Shoulson; “The Digital Essay,” by Andrea Lunsford; and the Arthur Vining Davis Workshop with Jason Irizarry.
One of the highlights of the summer workshops was a visit from Andover Bread Loaf’s student writing leaders who met with teachers at Bread Loaf to discuss writing. It was an historic event, as it was the first time that ABL brought their students to the mountain to experience Bread Loaf with their teachers. The student-led workshop was highly engaging and informative, and Lou Bernieri, director of the program, promises more students from ABL classrooms will attend in the future to interact with us on the mountain!
Shel Sax and Brent Ashley offered several hands-on, informative workshops for using iPads in the classroom, including the use of iMovie.
We also saw a substantial increase in the number of teachers wanting to connect through the Bread Loaf Teacher Network. All BLTN meetings this summer had fifty or more students and guests in attendance! We are very excited about the number and scope of the collaborative projects that will come out of this summer’s work.