Secondary English Weekly #19

VOLUME THREE, ISSUE NINETEEN /February 15-19, 2021

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Monday, February 15th

Tuesday, February 16th

Wednesday, February 17th
  • McGraw Hill Literacy Series Creating Clarity for Online Teaching and Learning with Dr. Catlin Tucker 4:30 PM–5:30 Register HERE
  • StudySync Webinar: How Administrators Can Best Utilize StudySync 4-4:45 PM — Register
Thursday, February 18th

Saturday, February 20th

Sunday, February 21st

OCTELA's virtual conference STARTS THIS WEEKEND!


Due to the current pandemic, OCTELA 2021: Equity will be held virtually on February 20-27th. They hope that this format will satisfy your need for top-notch professional development while also being able to accommodate the various schedules that teachers have this year. This year’s OCTELA virtual conference will include four keynote sessions (Laurie Halse Anderson, David Bowles, Dr. Jocelyn A. Chadwick, and Dr. Peggy O'Brien) that will be live streamed on Saturdays. There will be a mixture of live breakout and pre-recorded sessions available to attendees throughout the week. Virtual seats in live breakout sessions are limited; however, recordings of live sessions will be available for a minimum of thirty (30) days after the conference. All pre-recorded sessions will be available for on-demand viewing for up to one (1) year after the conference. As always, CEUs and graduate credit will be available.

Go to for more information and to register.

2021 Registration Prices: Standard Registration: $88; Undergraduate registration $45


OCTELA is excited to announce its partnership with Homestretch Apparel, an independently-owned brick and mortar shop in Delaware, Ohio. The 2021 conference t-shirt is actually a throwback to the super-popular "I [Ohio as a heart] Reading" design! Short-sleeved shirts, long-sleeved shirts, and hoodies are available. You can opt to have your order shipped to your home, or you can choose to pick it up in the Delaware store for no shipping cost. Orders will be shipped/available for pick up on February 18, 2021, so you can show off your OCTELA pride at the virtual conference. Please visit the following link to order your shirt:

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The Ohio Department of Education is offering all content from the Ohio Literacy Academy 2021 to all Ohio educators. Visit the Ohio Literacy Academy 2021 page to learn more about the content offerings, access videos, see the viewing guides, and take note of further content to be added in March and May. This Vimeo site: Ohio Literacy Academy 2021 on-demand videos has over 35 sessions that you can view. Districts, schools, and early childhood education programs are encouraged to use these resources as part of a comprehensive professional learning plan. Here are the sessions that were included in the 6-12 and multi-age bands:

AP Online workshops Available

College Board is excited to offer the new AP® online workshop model through the beginning of April 2021. Learn More about these online workshops. Attend an online workshop to help you and your students complete the AP course successfully through a review of the course and exam description, the core document for the course. You'll also get an introduction to the new course pacing guides and learn how AP Classroom can help you plan and focus instruction as well as give you data-driven feedback for the remainder of the year. Complete four modules over a period of one week to receive a certificate of completion with CEUs. Register Here for any of the workshops below.

  • AP English Literature & Composition, February 23, 2021 at 7-8:30PM
  • AP English Literature & Composition, March 11, 2021 at 7-8:30PM
  • AP English Literature & Composition, March 13-14, 2021 at 8AM-4PM
  • AP English Literature & Composition, April 04, 2021 at 8AM-4PM
  • AP English Language & Composition, February 25, 2021 at 7-8:30PM
  • AP English Language & Composition, March 10, 2021 at 7-8:30PM
  • AP English Language & Composition, March 13-14, 2021 at 8AM-4PM
  • AP English Language & Composition, April 03, 2021 at 8AM-4PM
  • AP English Language & Literature (Combined), March 06-07, 2021 at 8AM-4PM


English Leadership Quarterly

NCTE’s Conference on English Leadership (CEL) is seeking the next editor of English Leadership Quarterly. Finalists will be interviewed via videoconference in spring 2021. The applicant appointed by the CEL Executive Committee will effect a transition, preparing for their first issue in August 2022. The appointment is for four years, renewable for three years. Learn more about the application process here.


This is a professional development series designed for K–12 leaders and ELA educators. Here are some upcoming sessions you may want to attend.

  • FEBRUARY 17th Creating Clarity for Online Teaching and Learning with Dr. Catlin Tucker 4:30 PM–5:30 PM As learning continues online, many teachers are struggling with this new learning landscape. The Community of Inquiry framework can support teachers in understanding their roles in an online course, helping students to develop their social presence online, and engaging students in the construction of knowledge as part of an online learning community. Dr. Tucker will share learnings, insights and reflections gathered during this challenging school year. She will also talk about building and nurturing an online learning community.

  • FEBRUARY 24th How Literacy Instruction Supports Civics Instruction So Our Democracy Can Thrive with Dr. James Banks 4:30 PM–5:30 PM A moderated discussion with Dr. Banks about leveraging Civics and Social Studies content and critical thinking strategies during literacy instruction. Dr. Banks will talk about how this approach helps students become better readers, writers, and politically literate members of their communities who know, care and act to influence the world around them. This session will illustrate the importance of cross-curricular connections and building knowledge through historical context.
  • MARCH 3rd Creating Culturally Responsive Curriculum with Dr. Michelle Martin 4:30 PM–5:30 PM Dr. Martin will discuss what a culturally responsive classroom is, and the next steps you can take to create an environment that embraces a diversity of thoughts, persons, and experiences. She will provide guidance on building diversity within literacy curriculum.
Register HERE for either or both sessions. Find more information HERE. Certificates of Attendance will be provided.
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During the month of February, you can host an African American Read-In (AARI) virtual event. Include your event in the 2021 Report Card by completing this Host Report Card submission form after your event by March 15, 2021.

Ways to Get Involved:

  • Access this year's AARI toolkit.
  • Plan and add Add an event to the AARI calendar or find an AARI event near you!
  • Join a READ-IN already being hosted by Cuyahoga Community College: My Sister’s Keeper: Celebrating Black Women and Womxn Poets. The livestream will begin on Thursday, February 18, at 11am. Join HERE.
  • Download the hosting organization badge to use on your website, email signature, and other digital promotional materials!
  • Join the conversation on social media with the hashtag #AARI21.
  • Learn more about AARI HERE.


A Quick Search of the StudySync Library (filtered for African American Literature) will bring up 108 texts. This African American Literature in StudySync Google Sheet will show you each of those texts with information about author, year published, text type, and if it is included in a StudySync Unit. Think about how you can celebrate Black History Month through text in your classroom.

Conversation with Poet Rita Dove

Join NCTE and the Library of Congress for “Teaching Poetry: A Conversation with Rita Dove” on Wednesday, February 24 at 4 pm. The event will feature a conversation with former US Poet Laureate Rita Dove and NCTE member Melissa Alter Smith. Dove will discuss her own approach to writing, share and discuss specific poems, and dedicate ample time for Q&A.

-Rita Dove won the Pulitzer Prize for her third book of poetry, Thomas and Beulah, in 1987 and was US Poet Laureate 1993–95. She received the National Humanities Medal from President Clinton and the National Medal of Arts from President Obama – the only poet ever to receive both. Her many honors include a 2017 NAACP Image Award (for Collected Poems: 1974–2004), the Heinz Award in the Arts and Humanities, and the Academy of American Poets’ Wallace Stevens Award. She is the Henry Hoyns Professor of Creative Writing at the University of Virginia. Her eleventh collection of poetry, Playlist for the Apocalypse, is forthcoming from W. W. Norton in the summer of 2021.

-Melissa Alter Smith is the creator of the #TeachLivingPoets hashtag and Smith is also the co-author of Teach Living Poets along with Lindsay Illich. This text opens up the flourishing world of contemporary poetry to secondary teachers, giving advice on discovering new poets and reading contemporary poetry, as well as sharing sample lessons, writing prompts, and ways to become an engaged member of a professional learning community.

This event is open to the public, NCTE membership not required. Sign up today!

August Wilson African American Cultural Center Youth Writers Camp-Informational Meeting February 18th

The August Wilson African American Cultural Center invites you to attend an informational kick-off session on February 18th at 6pm. This special pre-camp session will give parents and students the opportunity to learn more about the Youth Writers Camp curriculum for 2021, provide them an opportunity to meet AWAACC staff, and ask questions of the amazing educators who will be instructing each monthly session. Youth Writers Camp is suitable for middle and high school age students.

The Youth Writers Camp curriculum addresses current events, including topics related to social justice, while at the same time keeping August Wilson’s literary legacy as a core objective. All camp sessions will be virtual and can be enjoyed from the comfort of your own home. During each session, time will be allotted for discussions, reading, writing, and sharing; allowing students to freely express themselves in a nurturing artistic environment.

All registrants for this important kick-off event will receive an email with a Zoom link and instructions the day before and day the of session. Youth Writers Camp sessions will happen March 20, April 17, May 15, June 12, ant July 3rd from 11am-1pm. All participating students are expected to submit an original piece of writing at the end of the workshop session(s). Learn More; Register


TeachRock is thrilled to announce the arrival of unit plans to their website. This project has been long in development, and first championed by many users who expressed a desire to plan multiple weeks of lessons based upon TeachRock content. TeachRock Unit Plans provide a more comprehensive set of resources for long-term planning. Each includes a curated collection of lessons to address a particular topic or learning outcome. Each unit also includes an overview that gives users an idea of how to sequence the lesson, and perhaps most importantly, an assessment document that offers teachers project-based formative and summative assessments based upon what is covered in the lessons.

In anticipation of Black History month, the inaugural unit plan is Civic Environmentalism. Intended for the Middle and High School levels, the unit explores specific details and events related to the origins of the environmental movement in the United States up to the current global climate crisis. With an emphasis on how collective action can address numerous issues, the unit highlights how Black Americans in communities around the nation are frequently more at risk and have experienced greater negative impact from the effects of climate change.

CCS Racial Justice Initiative Teacher Dream Grant: Book Study and Professional Development

This five-week course will be conducted by CCS educators across multiple disciplines and positions: Izetta Thomas, Allison Volz, Chaka Diop, and Courtney Johnson. Come “Freedom Dream” with them as you read, We Want to Do More Than Survive: Abolitionist Teaching and the Pursuit of Educational Freedom by Bettina L. Love and put your dreaming into practice. Dr. Love’s work will be the North Star as you learn the skills and pedagogies to critically interrogate the texts. You will learn from the texts, from one another, and from guest speakers whose work inspires our communities.

-Space is limited to 10 educators committed to abolitionist teaching, to sharing what they learn with others, and to using the books provided in their classrooms. Each educator selected will receive Dr. Love’s book and a carefully curated set of pictures, poetry, middle grade, and young adult books. Safe, socially distant book pick up will be at Fort Hayes (dates TBD).

-Classes will take place on live Zoom 5-7:30 on Wed. (3/3, 3/17, 3/31) and asynchronously 9-11:30 on Sat. (3/13 & 3/27) with a project submission due date *4/17. *Optional Ashland credit provided with a fee. Apply here:

Ohio Humanities: Celebrating Black History

Virtual Events

  • Behind the Mask: Black Power in Comics Monday, February 15 at 7pm Sponsored by Ohio History Connection and the National Afro-American Museum and Cultural Center. Co-hosted by the Wright Memorial Public Library.

Recommended Books about Black Ohio History or Written by Black Ohio Authors

Columbus Metropolitan Library Resources for Black History Month

CML honors Black History Month every year by highlighting materials from their collection. Let’s keep talking about race to help us move forward in battling systemic racism, as a community and as a nation. Here are some suggested readings.

Equity in action: Fostering an antiracist library culture

Hear how library leaders are taking actions and using tools to make their libraries more inclusive in our online Equity in Action: Fostering an Antiracist Library Culture course starting February 23. In this three-week, interactive workshop with an exciting guest speaker lineup, you’ll learn how to create an internal culture founded on principles of equity, diversity, and inclusion. You’ll complete assignments to build your own equity-based initiative in an interactive online classroom environment with personal coaching from an expert in the field.

The speaker program runs on Tuesdays, February 23, March 2, and March 9, 2:00-4:00 pm ET (recordings available) with an ongoing workshop over three weeks.

View Full Program; Register Today!

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What are the secondary english curriculum resources?

Here is the CCS Adopted, Supplemental, and Intervention Resources List that contains all of the resources available to secondary English teachers.

  • The Tier I Instructional Resources are StudySync (English 6-12) and the Bedford Texts/Launchpad (Honors and AP English).
  • The Tier II Intervention Resource is Achieve3000
  • The Supplemental Resources (in general) are TeachingBooks and DBQ.

You can see more about StudySync, Bedford, TeachingBooks, and DBQ below in this same section of the newsletter. This information will remain here all year for your convenience.

Visit the ELA 6-12 Webpage for all Secondary English Curriculum/Resources. You will find your COURSE FOLDERS on the Curriculum/Instructional Resources Quick Links for your Grade Level. The COURSE FOLDERS have everything you need for your courses including Curriculum Maps, Standard docs, digital novels, adopted resource trainings/tutorials, Course Intros, etc.

NOTE: To access many curricular and district, you must be logged into Google using your CCS credentials and not a personal account.

Content Priorities-What Matters Most in English Under the Constraints of Remote/Pandemic Teaching and Learning

We all know that remote teaching during a global pandemic inherently leads to a slower teaching and learning pace. The director of Secondary Curriculum asked me to put together some slides for how to adapt to the slower pace by showing what the three main priorities would be for teaching English in our new normal. The priorities are not much different than what they would be in a face-to-face situation, but they are narrowed and more focused.

Priority I: Essential Practice

  • significant instructional time with ELA disciplines: reading, writing, discussion

  • strategies/scaffolds for comprehension and composition that transfer across texts/contexts

Priority 2: Standard Alignment

  • questioning/activities/lessons/assessments that apply standard knowledge and skills to ELA disciplines: reading, writing, discussion

  • heavier focus on targeted standards from OST
  • awareness of PreAP/AP standards (Honors & AP)

Priority 3: Adopted Resource

  • use of StudySync (English 6-12) for integrated, on-grade-level, scaffolded lessons that inherently include Priorities 1 and 2

  • use of Bedford texts/Launchpad (Honors & AP) for foundational, skill, and theme/topic lessons that that inherently include Priorities 1 and 2

-In general, the first priority focuses on the essential practices for your classroom time. The second priority lists the standards that you should focus on the most for questions, activities, lessons, and assessments using the grade-level, complex texts from your essential practice in priority one. It may be that those priority standards become your narrowed focus for the rest of the year. The third priority shows you how the adopted resources inherently meet priorities one and two. It should be noted that in StudySync, you teach all of the standards listed in priority two in the first four CORE ELA units for your grade level. It may be that you try to do just those four units instead of six this school year due to our slower pace caused by remote learning.

-Below are the slides with the priorities detailed including which standards are the most important for preparing a student to be college and career ready and to do well on the OST. You will find resource links from the CCS ELA 6-12 Webpage and our adopted resources for meeting the priorities. You will find research behind each of the priorities and why they are the most important for a narrowed focus. You will want to read through each carefully as they each contain several items of information.


Content Priorities ELA 6-8

Content Priorities English 9-12

Content Priorities Honors 9-10/AP 11-12

-You can also find the Content Priority Slides on the ELA 6-12 Webpage in the "CCS ELA GUIDING DOCUMENTS" section of the Curriculum/Instructional Resources 6-8 and the Curriculum/Instructional Resources 9-12 Quick Link pages.


-You AND your students access StudySync via the Clever icon or Click on the McGraw Hill icon. Then, launch the StudySync App.

-Your classes are marked with X and Y. The X classes were for first semester and the Y classes are for second semester. If you want to change the names of your classes in StudySync, follow this guide:

StudySync-How to Change Course Names

-Here is information about linking StudySync to Google Classroom.

-Here is the demo code for StudySync in case you have a student teacher, building coach, or admin that wants to see the platform and they do not have a class aligned in Clever/IC.

  • DEMO:
  • UN: studysync2021
  • PW: MHEela21


Help Center

Finding the Help Center in StudySync (video)

-Remember, if you have a question that deals with CCS infrastructure as it relates to StudySync (Clever, rostering, IC, etc.), those questions would be for Tim Wangler.

Tutorials, Trainings, and Webinars

Ask-an-Expert Sessions

Remote Teaching Documents

Resources/ Links from StudySync Training Presenters

Teacher Resources from StudySync:

Administration Resources from StudySync:

Here are the finalized/updated support emails/numbers for McGraw Hill.

Teacher Support McGraw Hill

Administrator Support McGraw Hill

Student/Parent Support McGraw Hill

studysync usage

StudySync should be used in the same manner as any adopted "textbook." It is the place where the CORE ELA Units for Grades 6-12 are housed (print-student consumable; digital-StudySync online). It is where students access grade-level, complex texts that they will read, write about, and have discussions around. It is the resource that offers scaffolding at point of use for students to access complex texts. It is the place where standards are mastered using reading, writing, and skill lessons. It is the place where you have a up-to-date information on how your students are mastering standards because the StudySync grade book has a Standards view that allows you to see every assignment a student has done aligned to a standard and offers ideas for remediation (StudySync Gradebook & Data Analysis). It is NOT a literacy intervention tool like Achieve3000 that has programmatic goals for students. It is important to make this distinction because teachers need to take ownership of using StudySync as their Tier 1 Instructional resource. The bulk of your curriculum should come from StudySync. Teachers are still free to add and take away from the units, just as you might have a textbook in the past. However, it is not ok to just use StudySync for testing and blasts. If you have been doing that, please make the change to using StudySync's CORE ELA Units. The first read, skill, close read routine found there is exactly what our students need to master standards using complex text. It is also important to note that StudySync is not a supplemental product, like TeachingBooks or DBQ Online. Those are available for your use but should not be the place you go to for the bulk of your curriculum.

BEDFORD/LAUNCHPAD access and support


To get to Launchpad through Clever, click the Launchpad icon and click on the name of class/textbook. Student texts were sent to the buildings. All students have a hardback text, Honors students should also have a workbook. If you experienced problems with Launchpad since the change to second semester, those should be fixed now. Reach out to Tim Wangler if you encounter any other issues.



Trainings and Tutorials
Bedford Overviews, Slideshows, Trainings, and Tutorials

AP Course Pacing Guides Updated to Make Up for Lost Instructional Time

If your full-year AP classes have been forced off schedule, the new AP Pacing Guides provide one way to help AP teachers catch up by maximizing their direct teaching time. You can check them out at AP Central and below. They have been added to your COURSE FOLDERS and can be found with the other AP Curricular items on the ELA 6-12 Webpage at the Curriculum/Instructional Resources 9-12 Quick Link.

TeachingBooks Access and Support


You AND your students access TeachingBooks via the Clever icon or Click on the TeachingBooks icon.

UPCOMING PD (20-Minute Webinars)


-TeachingBooks is the tool that houses the lists of books we have in the warehouse and in the Secondary English Curriculum Office. Use this TeachingBooks Tutorial to learn how to access the CCS book lists.

- TeachingBooks also is a place to get additional novel and author resources. These Overview videos/trainings from TeachingBooks can help you understand the resources: Introduction video I Slide Presentation and Training Script.

-October 16th PD Session: Virtual and Blending Learning Recording

-February 3rd PD Session: Booklists, Virtual Ideas, and More on TeachingBooks

DBQ Literature Mini-Qs: Supplemental Resource access and support

DBQ has given us FREE access to the Literature Mini-Qs this school year. You access them via via the Clever icon or Click on the The DBQ Project icon. Each school also has a hard-copy binder of the lessons. Making copies of these for subs would be a great way to have standard-aligned, high-quality lessons since subs will not/may not have access to StudySync.

--Access Live and Self-Paced PD for DBQ Here.

--Here is a Smore for DBQ Online Educator Support.

--Here is a Smore for DBQ Online Student Support

--Check out the newest addition to the DBQ Platform, Unit Trailers, with this sample for

How Does The Great Gatsby Reflect America in the Twenties?

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The next course meeting day is TUESDAY, March 9th. If you have ever wanted to talk to other English teachers in the district about teaching ideas for the course(s) you instruct, now is your chance to join a Zoom session to

  • share how they are making the most of our adopted resources (e. g. StudySync) to maximize student learning,
  • show teaching ideas that have worked well this year,
  • ask other colleagues how they are handling something you want to try, etc.

There is no set agenda for this meetings, so bring your ideas to share. The district will plan to have some Course Meetings every second, Tuesday. The remaining dates are 3/9, 4/13, 5/11. We may not be able to have every course, every month due to the available number of hosting Zoom rooms, but we will offer as many as we can. You will be able to find the ones available for each date in this newsletter the week of the meetings.


Andy Chow with Ohio Public Radio/TV would like to start a speaking/outreach program where he and his colleague talk to high school students about the career possibilities in journalism and broadcasting. They would visit your classes (virtually) to talk about the careers and answer any questions. If you are interested in this, please reach out to Andy at


Kami Connect 2021 is a free virtual conference for educators on February 18th. Join them for an action-packed day of professional development, inspirational speakers, previews of new Kami features, prizes, and much more! Sessions include Fostering collaboration, Whiteboarding, Inclusive classrooms and accessibility, Social and emotional learning, New Kami features and product tips, Expert panel discussions, and Inspiring keynotes. Register HERE for Kami Connect


-Check out the current offerings HERE.


View the FREE Webinars here.

-Up next is Student-Centered Coaching from a Distance: Coaching for Rigor and Engagement

on Monday, February 22, 2021 - 3:30pm


Here is the line-up for the upcoming author events at Gramercy Books on Main Street in Bexley.


Institute 1: Introduction to Reading Like a Historian Curriculum and Beyond the Bubble Assessments February 24, March 10, and March 24, 2021; 6-8pm ET

Institute 2: Designing and Adapting Reading Like a Historian Curriculum March 3, March 17, and March 31, 2021; 6-8pm ET

LEARN MORE and REGISTER HERE. A limited number of scholarships are available for teachers who can verify current employment at a Title I school in the United States. Visit this form for more information. The deadline to apply for a scholarship is January 24th.


Join SLJ for Middle Grade Magic 2021 to get a behind-the-scenes glimpse at some of the most anticipated new titles for kids and tweens, from modern coming-of-age tales to eye-popping graphic novels to submersive fantasy. You'll also hear from librarians, who will share how they’ve incorporated programs and activities focused exclusively on this age group. Attendees will also have the opportunity to check out the virtual exhibit hall, chat directly with authors, download educational resources, and enter to win prizes and giveaways.

Middle Grade Magic is still under development so check back for keynote and speaker announcements, additional sessions, exhibit hall and sponsor details, live guest chats and more! Event Hours: 9:00AM ET - 5:00PM ET


Here is the rest of the supurb line-up for this season.

Registration will open soon for the rest of these author talks at the Carnegie Author Series site.

  • Lisa Wingate (Before We Were Yours), August 29, 2pm
  • Wil Haygood (Tigerland), October 7, 7pm; Remember this is the book about East High School. You could plan to read it at the beginning of next school year and have your students attend his author talk.
  • Brit Bennett (The Vanishing Half) December 5, 2pm


The Ohio Teacher of the Year program annually identifies exceptional teachers and celebrates their effective, inspiring work both inside and outside of the classroom. The Department currently is accepting nominations for this prestigious honor. Submit nominations by April 9.

Through a memorandum of understanding with Taiwan’s Ministry of Education, the Ohio Department of Education and the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office (TECO) in Chicago invite Ohio English language arts, English as a second language and world language teachers to apply to the Teaching English in Taiwan Program. The program seeks new, experienced, and recently retired teachers who hold current Ohio licensure. Educators selected to work in Taiwan will teach English to elementary or middle school students for one academic year. Teaching contracts are from 10 to 11 months, depending on the placement.

Teaching English in Taiwan Program applications due by April 23

THE EAST ASIAN STUDIES CENTER AT THE OHIO STATE UNIVERSITY is pleased to offer several free opportunities for K-12 teachers in Spring and Summer 2021. These seminars fill quickly, so register early.

February 13, 2021- NCTA Workshop: “More Than Just K-POP: Take the Journey of Korea”

JULY 12-23, 2021: NCTA “The Journey of East Asia: Adventures Through Stories, Games, and Maps”

JUNE 7-18, 2021: Global Teacher Seminar: “Global Social Justice, Activism, and Protests”


AMLE will host an Institute for Middle Level Leadership July 11-14 at Renaissance Orlando at Sea World in Florida. In addition to providing unparalleled training for middle school leaders and teams, the Institute will also be an opportunity for educators to reflect and grow from this past year’s challenges and look to the future. Registration is open! Space will be limited due to social distancing, to save your spot get your name on the list today. Reserve your Spot.

In addition to providing world-class faculty who will provide personalized coaching on the most pressing topics in middle school education, this Institute will be a unique opportunity for attendees to receive in-depth training on AMLE’s newly updated foundational text, The Successful Middle School: This We Believe.


HERE is the contest to win $500 in Books.

HERE is the grant opportunity to win $1,000 in Books

HERE is the contest to win 5 copies of Their Eyes Were Watching God (exp. March 1st)

Save $25 at Bulk BookStore with code: BOOKLOVE ($400 minimum order, expires March 1st)


HERE are the highlighted contests and giveaways for February 2021.


HERE are the highlighted contests and giveaways.

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Students in 9th–12th grade who love writing stories, crafting new worlds, and building never-before-seen characters, should sign up for Thurber House's Young Writers' Studio! Young Writers' Studio will be held online on Zoom until it's safe to meet in person. They meet every other week with author and English professor Robert Loss. They kick off the first hour with quality writing prompts and activities. They wrap up the last hour with the chance to workshop pieces that you or others share. It's a safe, low-key, fun way to enjoy writing and meet others!

Click Here to Learn More; Click Here to Register

Winter/Spring 2021 Schedule (6:30-8:30pm on Select Tuesdays)

  • Tuesday, February 16
  • Tuesday, March 2
  • Tuesday, March 16
  • Tuesday, March 30
  • Tuesday, April 13
  • Tuesday, April 27

A limited number of scholarships are available for this program. Email for more information.


The Winter Writing Wizards Classes for Grades 6, 7, and 8, will meet via Zoom on Saturdays: February 27 and March 6, 13, 20 Learn More; Register for Writing Wizards

You can sign up for one or both sets of classes.

  • Poems for Life 10:00 – 11:30 am ET The world is full of weird events...murder hornets?! You’ll learn to look at real-world events like a poet, and have fun reinventing them through your writing and making your voice heard.
  • Ensembles Assemble! 12:00 – 1:30 pm ET What if we make a whole ensemble of vampires, robots, and more, each created by a person in the class, all in the same shared story? Writing a character is fun—but writing a universe together is magical.

Questions? Prefer to register over the phone? Contact Meg Brown at A limited number of scholarships are available for this program. Registration Deadline: Friday, February 19


For $15 students aged 9-14 can join a 50-minute class where they will discuss and sing along with Hamilton. They'll discuss how Hamilton came to Broadway, play some trivia, and learn and talk about topics they initiate. Classes are available through March 27th, but they are filling up fast. Check out all of the classes and register HERE.


Poetry Out Loud (POL) encourages students to learn about great poetry through memorization and recitation. This program helps students master public speaking skills, build self-confidence, and learn about literary heritage and contemporary life. Created by the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation, Poetry Out Loud is administered in partnership with the State Arts Agencies of all 50 states, the District of Columbia, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico. Teachers, librarians, or administrators register their high schools each year with the Ohio Arts Council and organize contests with one class, several classes, or a whole school. Contests, workshops, and multi-media program materials, including curricula, are free. Poetry Out Loud is aligned with Common Core and National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) standards.

REGISTER YOUR SCHOOL HERE. I Get more information here.

POL Teacher's Guide I POL Virtual Competition Specifics


Here are two writing contest from NCTE.

Achievement Awards in Writing (for 11th grade students)

This school-based writing program encourages high school students in their writing and publicly recognizes some of the best student writers in the nation. NEW Deadline March 26

Promising Young Writers (for 8th grade students)

This school-based writing program stimulates and recognizes student’s writing talents and emphasizes the importance of writing skills among eighth-grade students. NEW Deadline March 26


The Application for the 2021 Princeton Summer Journalism Program is now open!
The Princeton Summer Journalism Program (PSJP) is a free journalism and college preparatory program for high-achieving current juniors from low-income backgrounds who are interested in journalism. They are currently planning to run the program virtually for the summer of 2021. Over seven weeks, students will attend virtual workshops to learn reporting skills from professional journalists. They will also attend virtual lectures on liberal arts topics led by Princeton University professors. Participants hold a press conference, produce a short documentary, report on a professional sporting event, attend a virtual theatrical production, and interview subjects for their feature stories, which will be published in the Princeton Summer Journal. Review the 2020 Program Schedule for a sample of what to expect. After the program, students work with a volunteer college adviser, a professional journalist or program alum, to complete their college applications.

Program Flyer: PSJ 2021
Program dates: mid-June through early August 2021
Cost: None. There is no cost to students to participate in this program.
Eligibility: To apply, students must be:

  • Current high school juniors (Class of 2022)
  • living in the United States permanently
  • with an unweighted GPA of 3.5/4.0 (or equivalent)
  • who have an interest in journalism (no experience required)
  • and meet one of the financial eligibility requirements below:
    • The custodial parent(s)/guardian(s)’ combined income (including child support received) must not exceed $60,000 annually
    • The student must be eligible for Free/Reduced-Priced Lunch.
    • The student is eligible for a SAT or ACT fee waiver.

Students facing extenuating circumstances should explain their situation on the application.
Applying: The online application is available on this website and due no later than Monday, February 22, 2021. Students must submit an unofficial transcript to be considered. You may read about the full application process and find answers to FAQs online.


Humanities Moments

Through the National Humanities Center’s Humanities Moments project, users submit short videos and essays recalling how an encounter with the humanities, whether through a book, film, document, performance, or something else, profoundly affected their lives.

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Song of the Week

Dua Lipa - Levitating Featuring DaBaby (Official Music Video)

did you miss earlier issues of the secondary english weekly newsletter?

Each week, this Secondary English Weekly Newsletter will be linked in an email sent to ELA and ELA-related teachers in Grades 6-12 and posted on the CCS English Language Arts 6-12 Page ( It will contain all of the latest information that could prove useful to you and your students. If you know of anyone who needs to be added to the mailing list, please send their name(s) to cphillips3865@columbus.k12.oh. Happy Educating!

Carla Mae Phillips

Lead Secondary English Curriculum Coordinator

Southland Center, Suite 125