TPS EIU Summer Mini Institutes

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(10-12 hrs, ex. two days 9-3) Teachers identify a theme as we gather during summer break  to discuss curriculum, plan and participate in TPS EIU training.  Stipends and technology incentives may be available for summer mini-institutes. Contact Cindy to discuss options! Summer Mini Institutes are considered TPS Level 2 training. Completion of Level 1 training is required prior to these events so we may transition from introductory to content specific and pedagogical material. A Single Session Workshop can be added to fulfill this requirement.


Custom Content Each TPS EIU event incorporates Library of Congress educational resources (remember, we are part of a Library of Congress educational initiative) AND is customized to address local pedagogical needs and interests (remember, we are also part of the EIU College of Education & Professional Studies). In addition to presenting and publishing various historical topics and themes, TPS EIU staff is knowledgeable and experienced in the areas of Language Arts, Content Literacy, Common Core State Standards and more.  We are also eager to collaborate with you and develop new resources on these topics and others.  In addition, TPS EIU utilizes the support of experts in education and other fields when appropriate to provide high quality professional development. 

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"Our group of teachers met for two consecutive days last summer to develop activities related to the Depression.  It was wonderful to have a chance to talk to colleagues from different grade levels and hear about what they were doing and how they use primary sources. Dr. Rich modeled many hands on activities and we were all amazed at resources"

Please note - Summer Mini Institutes are considered TPS Level 2 training. Completion of Level 1 training is required prior to these events so we may transition from introductory to content specific and pedagogical material. A Single Session Workshop can be added to fulfill this requirement prior to any institute.  


Four to ten educators with a common interest. Examples include, but are not limited to, content area, grade level, topic, pedagogical interest or school.  

Whether you are alumni of Teaching with Primary Sources EIU, a new member of your faculty team or a brand new teacher - the Library of Congress has resources that will support your teaching. A common misconception is that TPS EIU is only beneficial to social studies and history teachers.  While they are some of the most passionate fans, educators of all disciplines and grades find valuable resources for their classrooms and experience the benefits of teaching with primary sources that come in a variety of formats, from diverse people and places and across decades and eras. 


  • A team must consist of four to ten current K-12 teachers with a common attribute.

  • Each teacher must attend all sessions and meetings.

  • All requirements must be completed within the predetermined time-frame. 

  • Each teacher will create and submit one unique activity incorporating a Library of Congress primary source.  

  • Optional!  Teachers will be offered an opportunity to earn a stipend by implementing and reflecting upon their activity in the coming school year. This project involves a commitment for independent work beyond the scheduled meetings to develop, implement and reflect on the learning activity. 

Summer Mini Institutes vary due to the custom plans for each school.

Day One will focus on how Library of Congress resources enhance teaching and learning, engage students and support the development of critical skills at all levels.  Through hands-on activities we will explore the use of multiple formats of informational texts from diverse perspectives and time periods.  We will analyze primary sources to develop content literacy through the study of vocabulary and text structure.  We will also discuss how differentiation can occur through the use of photographs and multimedia sources of information.

Day Two will focus on local curriculum and individual classroom needs.  

Remember, we create the agenda with you! As you know, one size does not fit all!


Who? Gather a group of 4-10 interested teachers. Speak with colleagues who teach similar grade levels, content areas, building level or are part of a cohesive group and ask if they would like to collaborate.  This will be an opportunity to work together, discuss curriculum objectives and opportunities for future collaboration. Share how each is currently teaching with primary sources, previous Teaching with Primary Sources PD or Library of Congress site experience.

What? Identify a concept, themes or activities based on individual classroom needs.  This may be as broad (our community) or specific (Abraham Lincoln) as the team decides. 

When? Discuss possible schedules and ability to meet after school or during planning periods as a team with EIU TPS staff.  Required meetings are outlined above.

Everyone is excited and we want to participate!    Now what?     

Submit the following information by email to  We will contact the Team Coordinator for further discussion.  

#1 Team School(s) and address 
#2 What makes your group a team?  (The common attribute that allows you to collaborate and support one another as you teach with primary sources.)
#3 Points or comments for consideration by TPS EIU.
#4 Name and title of supportive administrator.

#1 Identify a Team Coordinator (key contact between group and TPS EIU)
#2 Please provide all information for each person individually.
- Name and contact information
- Teaching Assignment
- Prior Teaching with Primary Sources/Library of Congress experience.

#1 Take a look at the TPS EIU site calendar for our availability and let us know dates that work for you.

#1 What concept or theme should we implement?


Looking for something else?

Check out our Customized Teaching with Primary Sources Institutes page and contact us.

Want to learn more or have an idea? Email Dr. Cindy Rich, TPS EIU Program Director at or call 217-581-7857. We are happy to discuss possible topics and schedules or simply answer questions.

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