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3LIT Education Series: Writing as a Tool for Community Building

  • Wicker Park Secret Agent Supply Co. 1276 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, Illinois 60622 (map)

Calling all Chicago educators! 

As part of our 3LIT Education Series, a multi-part event series on teaching standard, critical, and cultural literacies, we will be hosting a panel discussion on writing as a tool for community building! How can we use writing to bridge cultural and linguistic gaps between students and educators and amongst students in order to foster a sense of community? How can we empower students to advocate for themselves and for their communities through writing? 

Join us on Sunday, August 5th at 3pm at 826CHI on 1276 N. Milwaukee Ave. for a rousing discussion and Q&A moderated by Maria Villarreal, 826CHI's Director of Programs. 

The panel will feature four inspiring educators:

• E'MON LAUREN is Chicago's first youth Poet Laureate. Lauren is a member of Young Chicago Authors' Teaching Artist Corps. As a writer, Lauren is a Louder than a Bomb Champion and has work published in The Breakbeat Poets: New American Poetry in the Age of Hip-Hop. 

•MEG MORRISON is an English teacher at Pathways in Education (Ashburn) and is passionate about promoting literacy and amplifying student voices in alternative school settings. She has a bachelor's degree in English and history from the University of Notre Dame and a master's degree in education with a reading specialist endorsement from Saint Xavier University. She takes a multimedia approach to teaching writing. Her students are remarkably creative; in addition to writing poetry, short stories, and nonfiction narratives, they also create zines and podcasts and contribute to their school's student publication, Pathways Press.

• T CLUTCH FLEISCHMANN is the author of Syzygy, Beauty (Sarabande Books) and Times Is the Thing, which is forthcoming from Coffee House Press in Spring, 2019. A nonfiction editor at DIAGRAM and Contributing Editor at EssayDaily, they have taught at Columbia College Chicago, the Stonecoast Low-Residency MFA, and the University of Iowa. They have organized reading and writing events for trans and queer communities in Chicago, New York, and Tennessee. 

• THEODORA KUHN has taught in the Little Village neighborhood of Chicago for 11 years. In that span, she has worked with 5th-8th graders teaching reading and writing instruction. She received her undergraduate degree in Middle Childhood Education from Ohio University and her Reading Specialist Masters from Roosevelt University. She has worked with educators across the city teaching workshops on developing critical thinking through writing, implementing readers' workshop, differentiation, and Gradual Release of Responsibility. Recently, Theodora has begun working with 826CHI, helping to develop and implement a middle school writers camp, "Eat Your Words." Theodora believes the key to success for all learners is high expectations, authentic texts, and thoughtful questions. For her, there is nothing more gratifying than seeing a student learn more about who they are through meeting challenges and feeling success. 

WHEN // Sunday, August 5th, 3-4:30pm
WHERE // The Wicker Park Secret Agent Supply Co./826CHI on 1276 N. Milwaukee Ave. in Wicker Park.
WHY // Hear four brilliant educators in conversation about how to empower students through writing and literacy! 

The event has a suggested donation of $5, all of which will benefit 826CHI, a nonprofit writing center in Wicker Park that offers free after-school tutoring and writing programming to over 3,000 students across Chicago each year. 

The 3LIT Education Series is made possible in part by a grant from Illinois Humanities, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the Illinois General Assembly. The other 3LIT events include: 

3LIT: Empowering Students to Lead // Sunday, July 15th, 3-4:30pm
3LIT: Organizing in the Classroom with Hilda Franco // Sunday, July 22nd, 3-4:30pm

**About 826CHI and the Secret Agent Supply**

826CHI is a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting students ages 6 to 18 with their creative and expository writing skills and to helping teachers inspire their students to write. Our services are structured around the understanding that great leaps in learning can happen with one-on-one attention and that strong writing skills are fundamental to future success.

826CHI shares its space with the Wicker Park Secret Agent Supply Co., a store with a not-so-secret mission. Our unique products encourage creative writing, imaginative play, and trigger new adventures for agents of all ages. Every purchase supports 826CHI's free programming, so visit us at 1276 N. Milwaukee Ave in Wicker Park or online to pick up spy glasses, fake moustaches, our latest student publications, and much more!