Newseum 2015 Summer Teacher Institutes

Summer Teacher Institute

Exclusive sponsorship for this Summer Teacher Institute has been provided by Annenberg Learner.

“Primarily Digital: Teaching Media Literacy to Plugged-in Students”

Dates: July 13-15 (novice) and July 22-24 (advanced)
Time: 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. each day
Where: Newseum, Washington, D.C.
Cost: FREE


  • Applications must be received by 11:59 p.m. on May 10
  • Participants will be notified by May 29

In partnership with Annenberg Learner, the Newseum is excited to offer two FREE three-day institutes for teachers. This unique professional development opportunity will include hands-on activities, exploration of artifacts from our collection with an archivist, and time to explore the museum independently.

“Primarily Digital” Institute Description

Your students use their freedoms of speech and press every day — but how well? Thanks to inventors from Gutenberg to Zuckerberg, your students consume print media, digital media and everything in between. Join Annenberg Learner and the Newseum as we explore the power of freedom of expression and blended learning techniques to develop your students’ literacy skills.

The institute begins by looking backwards — what tools do students need to analyze historical primary sources? What tools and tricks can you use to engage students in the process? Next, we’ll examine the opportunities for and challenges of self-expression in our digital landscape. We’ll conclude with a discussion of the ethical considerations that shape the exercise of freedom of press and speech, and apply those ideas to students’ context.

Throughout the workshops, teachers apply what they’ve learned to integrate technology meaningfully into a class or lesson for the 2015-2016 school year.

“Primarily Digital” Novice: July 13-15

This institute is designed for teachers who have limited experience with blended learning. Together, we’ll create accounts and learn the basics of using Twitter, Pinterest and more in the classroom.

“Primarily Digital” Advanced: July 22-24

This institute is designed for teachers who are active creators of online content, whether through blogs, websites or social communication tools, but are looking for novel applications. Significant time will be dedicated to adapting participants’ existing lesson plans to incorporate new tools and applications.

Advanced Institute Travel Stipends:
This year, we are pleased to offer merit-based travel scholarships of $400 each to four advanced institute participants. Scholarships may be used to cover selected participants’ travel and lodging expenses. If you would like to be considered for a scholarship, please submit the following with your application:

  • A brief essay (no more than 750 words) addressing why you should be awarded the scholarship.
  • A letter of recommendation written by a teaching colleague or school administrator addressing your collaborative spirit and creative contributions as an educator.

All Attendees Will Receive:

  • Classroom-ready and adaptable resources to implement into existing curriculum.
  • Strategies to implement Common Core, C3 and national standards-aligned curriculum in the classroom including primary source analysis, media literacy and analyzing historical arguments and research.
  • An overview of digital classroom resources from the Newseum and Annenberg Learner, in addition to other new media resources that can be used in the classroom.
  • Discussions with the Newseum curatorial and editorial staff and access to rare items in the Newseum collection.
  • Copies of select primary sources used in the curatorial sessions to take back to the classroom.
  • A private, behind-the-scenes “Tech Tour” of the Newseum’s production and technology centers.
  • A letter of recognition sent to your principal and superintendent.
  • Opportunity to submit a session proposal to present and attend a regional or national conference as the guest of Newseum Education and Annenberg Learner.
  • Access to Newseum Education staff to personalize a field trip for your class.
  • Complimentary breakfast and lunch each day. Teachers outside of the D.C. metro area are encouraged to apply, but transportation and housing are not included.

Eligibility Requirements:

  • Practicing grades 6-12 teachers, librarians or media resource specialists.
  • Note: The institute is open to all subject areas, but may be of particular interest to language arts and social studies teachers.

Participant Obligation Agreement

In return for attending the Summer Teacher Institute, educators agree to:


  • Complete a pre-institute survey.
  • Send an introduction
    • Novice: via email
    • Advanced: via social media — tweets with institute hashtag and a post on a social media platform of their choice (Facebook, Tumblr, etc.).

During the institute

  • Actively tweet or post throughout the day about activities, resources, etc.


  • Complete a post-institute survey.
  • Implement the resource or experience created during the institute. Share your work by doing one of the following:
    • Writing a guest entry on the Newseum and Annenberg Learner education blogs.
    • Co-hosting a webinar or Twitter chat with the Newseum and Annenberg Learner to expand the professional learning community and encourage collaboration with teachers around the country.
    • Co-presenting with the Newseum and Annenberg Learner at an education conference.
  • Participate in the Newseum’s Teacher Open House on Oct. 3, 2015. Note: Participation can be an additional blog post prior to Teacher Open House highlighting a specific resource, or participating in a panel that day to share effective, classroom-tested strategies using Newseum and Annenberg Learner resources and new media.


  • Participants will be selected via a competitive application process.
  • Applications must be received by 11:59 p.m. on May 10.
  • Applicants will be notified by May 29.

17 thoughts on “Newseum 2015 Summer Teacher Institutes

  1. I am very savvy with technology/social media but new to including this in my lesson plans. Should I apply for the novice or the advanced?

    • We welcome all teachers to apply! Please consider applying for next year’s institute if you didn’t apply this year.

  2. Please consider opening this next year for k-5. I am a fifth grade teacher and the content seems as though it would be helpful. My students just got chromebooks this year and spend half of the day doing assignments online.

  3. I recently visited the newseum with my 6th graders and it brought tears to my eyes seeing their genuine inquisitive nature’s come alive. Their raw, robust desire to know the truth behind some of the most pivotal historical events was electrifyingly infectious. I hope to be a part of this year’s teacher institute, so that I can develop a new lens from which to view our world and offer answers to a myriad of their burning questions. Thanks, Newseum!

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