The weekend beginning Friday, July 13th (and no, there was no bad luck associated with it) began this summer's invitational with the Wyoming Writing Project. I'm one of 12 "fellows" and -- along with several staff members -- we spent the initial weekend at the lovely Elk Mountain Hotel. The fellows are mostly teachers, with me (teacher educator), a school librarian, and a couple of principals. All education folks, anyway. We spent all day last Wednesday through Friday writing, brainstorming, and taking a field trip to Rock Springs. Why Rock Spring? you may be asking.
The culminating project of this year's Wyoming Writing Project will be writing, producing, and performing a play based on the massacre of @30 Chinese miners in Rock Springs in September of 1885. So we had a little tour of Rock Springs, so that we could more clearly envision the events and the places of the massacre.
If you'd like a little more information, here's a Wikipedia entry to get you started.
We also had to develop an essential question . . . I decided to focus on this one: "How does knowledge work?" which will allow me to do some personal and professional research related to knowledge transfer between differing types of settings.
I have a feeling that, over the course of the project (still 2 more weeks to run) we'll all get to know each other really well. I'm happy that so far no one has emerged as a complete wack job, and everyone is getting along fairly well. Perhaps we are still in a honeymoon phase . . .
I am most excited about being pushed to write. I don't take enough time to write for myself; instead, I'm constantly doing professional forms of writing, which are fulfilling, certainly, but lack a certain intimacy that I would like to have in my writing. So far I've done a scad of journaling, written a few poems, and begun reading on high-road and low-road transfer. I think that this experience will also be helpful in terms of my classes next fall; I'm hoping that I can transfer some of the community-building experiences and build teaching patterns for transfer into my classes.