About the Institute…

Thanks for checking.  We can no longer add any more attendees for this year!  Check back in January when we will announce next-year’s institute.

Dates: July 28 – August 1, 2014


This week-long residential Institute for K-12 Educators and Leaders is presented by the Thornburg Center for Professional Development and Rondout School District 72 in Lake Forest, Illinois.

A block of rooms has been reserved at a local hotel and shuttle service will be provided to the Institute site.

Participants in the Summer Institute will leave with:

  1. Practical strategies for addressing STEM using the new standards
  2. Familiarity with exemplary software for use in the sciences, math and engineering
  3. Methods for exploring any subject area with the enthusiasm of professionals who work in these fields
  4. Implementation strategies for project-based learning
  5. Experience with 3D printing and other gateways to engineering, K-12
  6. Explorations of the role of “place” in learning as it applies to your school or district.
  7. Connections to great resources in all areas of our explorations
  8. An action plan for implementation of what was learned in the institute

This Institute is built around the theme of connecting the dots where one set of dots relates to content areas (Science, Math, Engineering, Project-Based Learning, and the role that classroom design has on the learning process).  The second set of dots relates to the four learning spaces Campfires (presentations), Watering Holes (collaborations), Caves (reflections), and Life (applications), each of which has an important role to play in optimal learning.  Each session embodies all four of these spaces.

The engineering module uses design and fabrication facilities (e.g., 3D printers) and the sessions are all connected to well-established best practices as well as the new Next Generation Science Standards and the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics.

Each day includes breakfast and lunch, and special luncheon speakers who will visit through videoconferencing.  The facility will remain open until 10PM each night for those working on their projects.

Registration limits!

Registration is limited to 120 people who will be divided into smaller groups.  Each group will attend all four content areas and, on Friday, participants will finish and display their final projects celebrating an aspect of what they have learned.

Institute leaders

The leaders of these strands are recognized experts in their fields who have many years of experience working in K-12 education.  Our experts include:

  • David Thornburg, PhD – science, math and engineering
  • Roger Wagner – science, math, multimedia software
  • Sara Armstrong, PhD – project-based learning
  • Jenny Wojcik, PhD – learning space design
  • Norma Thornburg, MA – engineering
  • Gary Carnow, EdD – engineering

Registration: Closed

To get more information, contact Dr. Jenny Wojcik below:


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