Category Archives: Press Releases

Press Releases

Evening for Educators Oct. 18: Teachers Present Their Science Research and Original Art

October 4th, 2016–  Local teachers will present their ideas and research about science, art and the humanities and what they’ve learned about themselves as teachers at Evening for Educators on Tuesday, Oct. 18, 5:30-7:30 p.m. at the Discovery Place Education Studio. Presented by Charlotte Teachers Institute and Discovery Place Education Studio, Evening for Educators focuses on Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools teachers’ summer learning experiences as CTI Fellows. Fellows contributed to chemistry and physics research projects in UNC Charlotte research laboratories, and explored teacher identity through art at the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art.

The teachers, from a wide variety of subject areas and grade levels K-12, will discuss their experiences and share poster presentations and art work in a variety of media during Evening for Educators. The event includes refreshments and is free and open to the public. The Discovery Place Education Studio is located at 300 N. Poplar Street in uptown Charlotte. Registration is recommended at www.charlotteteachers.org.

The spotlighted teachers are all Fellows in CTI seminars. Twelve CTI Fellows participated in summer research in UNC Charlotte science laboratories with Dr. Susan Trammell, associate professor of physics and optical science, and Dr. Marcus Jones, associate professor of chemistry, and several of the professors’ graduate and undergraduate students. CTI Director Scott Gartlan said this Summer Science Research Experience for Teachers was a powerful intersection of teaching and learning at all levels, involving collaboration among teachers, professors, graduate students and undergraduate students.

“Our teachers contributed in hands-on, meaningful ways to critical, cutting-edge research with real-life applications. They are excited and empowered to take these experiences back to their own classrooms to share with their students in CMS,” Gartlan said.

Eighteen CTI Fellows also participated in a summer workshop at the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art where they explored teacher identity as portrayed in the media as well as their own understanding of themselves as teachers. “Teacher Identity: Pop Culture’s Influences, Images and Narratives” was led by Dr. Adriana Medina, associate professor of reading and elementary education at UNC Charlotte, and Christopher Lawing, vice president of programming and research at the Bechtler Museum.

“Teachers had an extended, very personal opportunity to draw upon the Bechtler’s amazing art collection and then create their own artistic representations of what it means to be a teacher,” Gartlan said. The teachers’ art is currently housed at the Bechtler and will be displayed at the Discovery Place Education Studio during this Evening for Educators event Oct. 18.

Other CTI Fellows from grades K-12 will also share innovative new curricula for a wide variety of subject areas that they developed for their own classrooms through CTI seminars.

About Charlotte Teachers Institute

Charlotte Teachers Institute is an educational partnership among Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, Davidson College and the University of North Carolina at Charlotte that works to improve teaching in Charlotte-Mecklenburg public schools. CTI cultivates content-knowledge, creativity, leadership skills and collaboration within and among Charlotte’s public school teachers. Programs include long-term seminars and special events for teachers, as well as community presentations.

Currently, 92 CMS teachers in grades K-12 are enrolled in eight, multidisciplinary seminars that began in the spring and continue until December, where teachers are creating new curriculum units for their students. These curriculum units generate learning beyond each teacher’s classroom, as the final units are shared with teachers’ school colleagues and are also published on the CTI website, providing access to teachers worldwide.

CTI is made possible by a joint commitment of resources from all three Institute partners and through the generosity of private funding institutions such as Wells Fargo and PriceWaterhouseCoopers. The Institute is housed at UNC Charlotte within the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences.

For more information, contact CTI Executive Director Scott Gartlan, 704-687-0078, info@charlotteteachers.org.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools media contact: Renee McCoy, 980-343-0954, renee.mccoy@cms.k12.nc.us

Davidson College Public Relations media contact: Jay Pfeiffer, 704-894-2920, japfeifer@davidson.edu

UNC Charlotte media contact: Buffie Stephens, 704-687-5830, BuffieStephens@uncc.edu

CTI News News Press Releases

CTI Welcomes 2015 Cohort of 104 CMS Teachers

Charlotte Teachers Institute (CTI) welcomed its new cohort of 104 Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools (CMS) teachers into its innovative, interdisciplinary seminars for 2015. “This year’s CTI Fellows represent the wide range of teachers in CMS, from new to veteran, kindergarten to 12th grade, and physics to interior design,” said CTI Director Scott Gartlan. “We continue to create significant growth opportunities for teacher leaders looking to deepen their knowledge base and impact the lives of their students.”

CTI’s eight concurrent seminars began with an orientation at Discovery Place in April and will run through November. CTI seminars are led by faculty experts in the arts and sciences, including four from Davidson College and four from UNC Charlotte. Seminars meet on those campuses and also at the Discovery Place Education Studio.

In each seminar, 13 CMS teachers (CTI Fellows) and a faculty leader work closely together in exploring a topic, long term and in depth, with each teacher creating new curriculum designed for his or her own students as a culminating project. CTI Fellows receive full access to both Davidson College and UNC Charlotte resources, as well as family memberships to Discovery Place. Upon completion each Fellow is awarded a $1,500 stipend and continuing education credits.

The 2015 CTI seminars and seminar leaders include:

About Charlotte Teachers Institute

Through seminars led by UNC Charlotte and Davidson College faculty, CMS teachers learn new content, work collaboratively with other teachers, and develop new curricula for their students. Teachers serve as leaders in the institute and choose seminar topics they deem most important and engaging for current CMS teachers and their students. To date, more than 300 CMS teachers have participated in 44 CTI seminars, reaching more than 62,600 students.

In addition to its eight intensive annual seminars, CTI presents special events open to all teachers including “Evening for Educators” and “Teachers as Scholars” where CTI Fellows share the new curriculum they have developed in their seminars. CTI also offers community programs open to the public such as the popular “Exploding Canons” cultural collaboration series. In 2013 CTI and its partners were recognized by the Council of Great City Schools with the Shirley S. Schwartz Urban Education Impact Award.

CTI programs are made possible by a joint commitment of resources from CMS, Davidson College and UNC Charlotte and through the generosity of private funding institutions such as the Wells Fargo Foundation, The Belk Foundation, The Duke Energy Foundation, Piedmont Natural Gas Foundation, the Charlotte Hornets Foundation and Lowe’s Home Improvement. The institute is housed at UNC Charlotte within the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences.

The full list of 2015 CTI Fellows by seminar includes:

Exercise and the Brain

  • Cassandra Black, First Grade, Ashley Park PreK-8
  • Jeanne Cooper, Science, Mallard Creek HS
  • Tracie Cooper, Fourth Grade, Hidden Valley ES
  • DeNise Gerst, Science, Barringer Academic Center
  • David Hartzell, Literacy, Shamrock Gardens ES
  • Deb Jung, Media Skills, Winding Springs Elementary
  • Amethyst Klein, Science, Winterfield ES
  • Aaron Kollar, Math, Piedmont Open IB MS
  • Benji Lewis, Fifth Grade, Grand Oak ES
  • Molly McCarthy, Language Arts, Piedmont Open IB MS
  • Lauren McNeil, Special Education, Lebanon Road ES
  • Ted Miracle, Fifth Grade, Grand Oak ES
  • Leslie Paytes, Math, Crestdale MS

What Makes a Nation?

  • Jennifer Anderson, Language Arts, James Martin MS
  • Brad Baker, History, W.A. Hough HS
  • Annie Calloway, Literacy, Olde Providence ES
  • Calen Clifton, Social Studies, Martin Luther King, Jr. MS
  • Alexandra Edwards, Social Studies, Bailey MS
  • Michele Lemere, English, Garinger HS
  • Lisa Modrow, Social Studies, Bailey MS
  • Rob Pinkston, Interior Design, W.A. Hough HS
  • Bridget Robinson, History, W.A. Hough HS
  • Heather Simpson, Grades 1-3, Chantilly Montessori
  • Mark Surratt, Fourth Grade, Providence Spring ES
  • Alan Vitale, History, East Mecklenburg HS
  • Katie Willett, English, Independence HS

The Origins of Human Language

  • KaraAnne Boneillo, Fourth Grade, Reedy Creek ES
  • Melinda Clunn, Language Arts, McClintock MS
  • Adriana Hart, Kindergarten, Collinswood Language Academy
  • Allen Jacobi, Language Arts, Northwest School of the Arts
  • Matt Kelly, Spanish, Independence HS
  • Melanie Kirschner, First Grade, Albemarle Road ES
  • Tabitha Miller, Kindergarten, Collinswood Language Academy
  • Sedana Noble, First Grade, Reedy Creek ES
  • Nicole Nesbitt, Science, Albemarle Road MS
  • Margaux Saenz, Fourth Grade, Oaklawn Language Academy
  • Seon Sloley-Posey, Fourth Grade, Barringer Academic Center
  • Rochelle Stanley, English, Garinger HS
  • Elizabeth Young, English as a Second Language, Lebanon Road ES

Fundamentals of Mathematics: Problem Solving and Process Standards

  • Lisa Ashworth, Fifth Grade, Barringer Academic Center
  • Michael Butler, Fifth Grade, Elon Park ES
  • Dennis Fox, Math/Science, Turning Point Academy
  • Gilberto Franco, Math, Collinswood Language Academy
  • Miesha Gadsden, Second Grade, J.H. Gunn ES
  • Katelyn Gardepe, Fifth Grade, David Cox Road ES
  • Connie George, Math, Quail Hollow MS
  • Kimberly Lipscomb, Fourth Grade, Highland Creek ES
  • Mindy Passe, Fifth Grade, Barringer Academic Center
  • Joanne Rowe, Math, Northwest School of the Arts
  • Stephen Salisbury, Kindergarten, Crown Point ES
  • Meg Shuman, Fourth Grade, Barringer Academic Center
  • Rima Solh, Math, Eastway MS

Peace Education: Psychological Factors that Endorse War

  • Heather Almaraz, Fifth Grade, Lebanon Road ES
  • Angela Bates, History, CATO Middle College HS
  • Gloria Brinkman, Visual Art, North Mecklenburg HS
  • Albertia Burgess, English, West Charlotte HS
  • Melanie Greely, Grades 4-6, Chantilly Montessori
  • Cheryl Hanley, Language Arts, McClintock MS
  • Sarah Korenyik, Language Arts, Northwest School of the Arts
  • Jennifer Ladanyi, Language Arts, Bailey MS
  • Michael Richards, Social Studies, Bailey MS
  • Megan Shellenberger, English, W.A. Hough HS
  • Roshan Varghese, History, Butler HS
  • Deborah Watson, Visual Art, Hopewell HS
  • Christopher Williams, English, East Mecklenburg HS

Integrating Concepts in Life Sciences

  • Chrystal Cavanagh, Science, Morehead STEM Academy
  • Alicia Gaj, Science, McClintock MS
  • Rochelle Gray, Biology, Mallard Creek HS
  • Tavia Highsmith, Language Arts, Albemarle Road MS
  • Julie McConnell, Biology, W.A. Hough HS
  • Adora Reid, Science, James Martin MS
  • Ericka Riddle, Biology, East Mecklenburg HS
  • Julie Ruziska Tiddy, Science, Carmel MS
  • Deb Semmler, Physics, East Mecklenburg HS
  • Sandie Spraggins, Technology, Irwin Academic Center
  • Kimberly Terrell, Fifth Grade, Steele Creek ES
  • Jennifer Thompson, Science, James Martin MS
  • Connie Wood, Biology, East Mecklenburg HS

Africa: Moving Beyond Popular Culture

  • Lara Britain, Social Studies, James Martin MS
  • Justine Busto, English as a Second Language, East Mecklenburg HS
  • Nikki Dingle, Science, Coulwood MS
  • Ian Joyce, Social Studies, Eastway MS
  • Beth Lasure, Visual Art, Mallard Creek HS
  • Ebone’ Lockett, English, West Mecklenburg HS
  • Wendy Potter, Family/Consumer Science, David Butler HS
  • Pam Shembo, Fifth Grade, Waddell Language Academy
  • Jackie Smith, Science, W.A. Hough HS
  • Merrie Smith, Third Grade, Shamrock Gardens ES
  • Darrmetacia Winston, Family/Consumer Science, Olympic HS School
  • Lana Withrow, Music, Barringer Academic Center
  • Sade Wright, Third Grade, Barringer Academic Center

Supernatural Figures in Theatre, Film and the Brain

  • Tabitha Albury, English, North Mecklenburg HS
  • Christine Beau-Antoine, Language Arts, Lincoln Heights Academy
  • Angela Boyce-Thornton, Kindergarten, Ashley Park Pre K-8
  • Mawuena Dabla, French, Harding University HS
  • Jennifer Dalesandro, Third Grade, Bain ES
  • Nikki Guevara, First Grade, Bain ES
  • Kristen Karazsia, English, West Mecklenburg HS
  • Stephanie Misko, English, W.A. Hough HS
  • Silvia Monsalve-Velazquez, First Grade, Oaklawn Language Academy
  • Noelle Peerey, Visual Art, Hopewell HS
  • Kelley Shelley, Visual Art, Butler HS
  • Teresa Strohl, Visual Art, Barringer Academic Center
  • Amy Thomas, First Grade, Reedy Creek ES

 

Events Exploding Canons Press Releases

Charlotte Teachers Institute Explores Lake Norman in Exploding Canons: Under The Lake Oct. 21

Photos from CTI’s Exploding Canons: Under The Lake October 21, 2014

Alex Edwards-Aaron Kollar

CTI Fellows Alexandra Edwards and Aaron Kollar welcome guests.

Amy Ringwood-Alan Vitale

CTI Seminar Leader Amy Ringwood and CTI Fellow Alan Vitale set up for guests to view living things Amy collected from Lake Norman waterways.

Mary Fabian and guests

CTI Fellow and Seminar Coordinator Mary Fabian invites guests to take a closer look at creatures who live in the lake.

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Expert panelists included (l. to r.): Rebecca McKee, Jan Blodgett, Jeff Michael, Steve Jester and Bill McCoy.

PRESS RELEASE

The flow of life along the Catawba River changed dramatically about 50 years ago when Duke Energy created Lake Norman with the construction of Cowans Ford Dam in 1963. The lake and its surrounding region saw small farms, large plantations, mills and more replaced by state-of-the-art homes and businesses, nuclear power structures, and a recreational lake culture – along with less visible changes such as shifting fish populations and a rise in community activism and environmental protection.

Charlotte Teachers Institute (CTI) will plumb the depths of Lake Norman – past, present and future – with “Exploding Canons: Under The Lake” on Tuesday, Oct. 21, 5:30-8:00 pm, at Davidson College’s Lilly Family Gallery. This installment of CTI’s flagship speakers series dives deep into the changing social and physical landscapes of Lake Norman and its profound effects on the larger region, with a diverse group of topics and experts including:

  • Lake Norman: Powering the Region — Steve Jester, Vice President of Water Strategy, Hydro Licensing and Lake Services, Duke Energy
  • Stories from Under the Lake — Jan Blodgett, College Archivist, Davidson College
  • Making Room for Nature in Man-Made Environments — Rebecca McKee, Davidson Impact Fellow, Catawba Lands Conservancy
  • From River People to Lake People: Place & Identity in the Lake Norman Area — Jeff Michael, Director, UNC Charlotte Urban Institute
  • Lake Norman: A Catalyst for Growth — William J. “Bill” McCoy, Professor Emeritus of Political Science, UNC Charlotte

David Martin, professor of economics and environmental studies at Davidson, will serve as moderator. Community partners including Carolina Thread Trail, Catawba Lands Conservancy and the UNC Charlotte Urban Institute will host information booths during the event. “CTI’s Exploding Canons programs feature new ways of looking at current topics from a variety of perspectives,” said CTI Director Scott Gartlan. “It’s fascinating to consider all the lenses through which we can look at Lake Norman – what lies beneath the lake not just physically but socially and historically, and what it likely means for us in the future.” Gartlan noted this is CTI’s 10th Exploding Canons program. The original “Under the Lake” project began with Davidson College archivist Jan Blodgett who collected oral histories and stories about the people connected to Lake Norman to mark its 50th anniversary. “Exploring the land under the lake brings together so much more than a few names on an old map,” Blodgett noted. “Those names and the land they farmed, or mills they worked in, shaped this region. All our recent economic and social changes are built on what was here before. The more we know of the stories of the lake, the richer our shared culture becomes.” “Duke Energy had a vision to harness the power of the Catawba River to provide electricity for a growing region,” explained Duke Energy’s Steve Jester.  “The completion of Cowans Ford Dam in 1963 created Lake Norman which was a catalyst for the region’s prosperity and continues to be a valuable resource for the community.” CTI’s Oct. 21 event, sponsored by Duke Energy, is free and open to the public. It begins with a reception at 5:30 pm, followed by the speakers’ presentations and panel discussion from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Information and registration is available at www.charlotteteachers.org or 704-687-0047. About Charlotte Teachers Institute The Charlotte Teachers Institute is an educational partnership among Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools (CMS), Davidson College and the University of North Carolina at Charlotte initiated to strengthen teaching and learning in CMS. An affiliate of the Yale National Initiative at Yale University, CTI provides intensive, seven-month-long seminars led by Davidson and UNC Charlotte faculty where CMS teachers learn new content, work collaboratively with other district teachers, and create new curriculum for their own classrooms. Teachers serve as leaders in the institute and choose seminar topics they deem most important and engaging for current CMS teachers and their students. Since CTI’s inception in 2009, more than 350 CMS teachers with over 70,000 students have participated in CTI seminars. CTI also reaches out to the larger community with public events such as Teachers As Scholars and the popular Exploding Canons cultural collaboration series. CTI is made possible by a joint commitment of resources from all three Institute partners, with additional support from the Duke Energy Foundation, Piedmont Natural Gas Foundation, Wells Fargo and the Belk Foundation. The institute is housed at UNC Charlotte within the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences. In 2013, CTI and its partners were recognized by the Council of Great City Schools with the Shirley S. Schwartz Urban Education Impact Award. For more information, please visit charlotteteachers.org or contact CTI Executive Director Scott Gartlan at 704-687-0078 or scott.gartlan@uncc.edu.

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Press Releases

CTI Presents Bright New Ideas for Teaching About Energy

CHARLOTTE – Sept. 18, 2014 – Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools (CMS) teachers will share bright new ideas for teaching and learning about energy, at a Charlotte Teachers Institute (CTI) event for the public on Tuesday, Sept. 30, from 5:30 to 8 p.m. at the EnergyExplorium at McGuire Nuclear Station in Huntersville.

This “Teachers As Scholars” program features CMS teachers who collaborated on the topic “The Nature of Energy: How We Use and Store It to Power Our Everyday Lives,” and highlights innovative curriculum they developed during a long-term CTI seminar. CTI Seminar Leader Susan Trammell, professor of physics and optical science at UNC Charlotte, will also share her energy expertise at the free Sept. 30 event.

Sponsored by Piedmont Natural Gas and Duke Energy, the program begins with a reception and viewing of the EnergyExplorium’s exhibits from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., followed by presentations and a panel discussion with Trammell and CTI Fellows until 8 p.m.  Space is limited, so registration at www.charlotteteachers.org is recommended.

Featured topics and teachers include:
• The Nature of Energy: How to Use and Store It to Power our Everyday Lives – Trammell
• Energy in Our World – Cindy Woolery, Science, Elizabeth Traditional Elementary School
• Cruising Continents and an Awesome Asthenosphere: How Convection and Geothermal Energy Fuel Earth’s Ever Changing Surface! – Julie Ruziska Tiddy, Science, Carmel Middle School
• Mama Did Not Take the Kodachrome Away But Charge-Coupled Devices Did – Deb Semmler, Physics, East Mecklenburg High School

The event is an outgrowth of an intensive, seven-month-long  CTI seminar Trammell led for CMS teachers in grades K-12, where they explored various forms of energy, the science behind its generation and conservation, as well as costs, benefits and concerns. CTI Executive Director Scott Gartlan said, “One of CTI’s strategic goals is to provide opportunities to showcase CMS teachers’ innovative scholarship created in CTI seminars to a wider community audience. This partnership with Piedmont Natural Gas, Duke Energy and the EnergyExplorium will serve as an important step in fulfilling this goal.”

Thirteen sets of extensive, energy-related curriculum units for grades K-12 were developed by teachers in Trammell’s seminar, designed specifically for their own students. “We hope these units inspire other teachers to share their creativity with colleagues in an effort to benefit more students in more classrooms across the district,” Gartlan said. All 13 are published on the CTI and Yale National Initiative websites.

Trammell’s seminar was one of eight CTI conducted in 2013 on a wide range of topics for a total of 97 CMS teachers from all grade levels and subject areas, led by Davidson College and UNC Charlotte faculty. The units developed in all eight seminars are posted online. Currently CTI is offering another eight seminars for 2014. For more information visit: www.charlotteteachers.org.

About Charlotte Teachers Institute

The Charlotte Teachers Institute is an educational partnership among Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools (CMS), Davidson College and the University of North Carolina at Charlotte initiated to strengthen teaching and learning in CMS. An affiliate of the Yale National Initiative at Yale University, CTI provides intensive, seven-month-long seminars led by Davidson and UNC Charlotte faculty where CMS teachers learn new content, work collaboratively with other district teachers, and develop curriculum units for their own classrooms. Teachers serve as leaders in the institute and choose seminar topics they deem most important and engaging for current CMS teachers and their students. Since CTI’s inception in 2009, more than 350 CMS teachers with over 70,000 students have participated in CTI seminars. CTI also reaches out to the larger community with public events such as Teachers As Scholars and the popular Exploding Canons cultural collaboration series.

CTI is made possible by a joint commitment of resources from all three Institute partners, with additional support from Piedmont Natural Gas, Duke Energy, Wells Fargo and the Belk Foundation. The institute is housed at UNC Charlotte within the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences. In 2013, CTI and its partners were recognized by the Council of Great City Schools with the Shirley S. Schwartz Urban Education Impact Award.

For more information, please visit charlotteteachers.org or contact CTI Executive Director Scott Gartlan at 704-687-0078 or scott.gartlan@uncc.edu.
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CTI News News Press Releases

Duke Energy Supports CTI Energy Seminar and Special Events

Duke Energy recently announced its support for Charlotte Teachers Institute (CTI) with a $20,000 grant to fund an energy-related seminar for Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools (CMS) teachers, as well as two special events for the public this fall. Duke Energy is sponsoring “The Global Energy Challenge,” one of CTI’s eight, long-term seminars in 2014.

The two Duke Energy supported public events are: “Teachers as Scholars: The Nature of Energy” on Tuesday, Sept. 30, at the EnergyExplorium at McGuire Nuclear Station, in partnership with Piedmont Natural Gas; and “Exploding Canons: Under the Lake” on Tuesday, Oct. 21, at Davidson College. The Exploding Canons program explores the changing social and physical landscape of Lake Norman over its 50 year history. Both events are free and begin with a reception at 5:30 pm, followed by presentations from 6:30 to 8 p.m.

“Duke Energy commends the more than 100 teachers who will spend much of their free time this summer and fall participating in the Charlotte Teachers Institute,” said Richard “Stick” Williams, president of Duke Energy Foundation. “These dedicated educators are being exposed to content-rich ideas and are developing curriculum that will benefit students in Charlotte classrooms and beyond. We are proud to support the work of the Institute,” Williams said.

Denise Gerst, science teacher at Barringer Academic Center, said CTI’s energy seminar stretches her knowledge as an educator and a consumer. She added: “I’m more cognizant of how energy is utilized and how energy sources are identified within our country and throughout the world. I also have the opportunity to collaborate with fellow educators from various disciplines who challenge me to think beyond my comfort zone.”

Davidson College Chemistry Professor Durwin Striplin, faculty leader for the energy seminar, notes he is also grateful for “the opportunity to study and learn – with a very energetic and keen group of fellow teachers – about the energy future that faces our planet and the challenges we face. We’re looking at not only possible solutions to the massive energy needs that will confront us in the next couple of decades, but also the necessary teaching practices that will motivate students to take part in this all-inclusive, all-important global conversation.”

CTI seminars began in April and continue until December, with 104 CMS teachers participating. These CTI Fellows work closely with university/college faculty and each other to create new curricula designed for their own classrooms, with an expected reach of 15,000 CMS students in 2014-15. “CTI’s collaborative seminars deepen teachers’ understanding of the subjects they teach, and help them think critically and creatively about academic objectives – with their own students in mind,” said CTI Director Scott Gartlan.

This year’s CTI seminars take place at Discovery Place, the Gantt Center for African American Arts + Culture, Davidson College and UNC Charlotte. The Duke sponsored Energy seminar is on of the four seminars at Discovery Place.

CTI News News Press Releases

CTI National Fellows Engage in ‘Life-changing’ Seminars at Yale University

2014 CTI National Fellows
CTI Yale National Fellows take a moment to pose during their intensive, two-week seminars at Yale University (l to r): Teresa Strohl, Alexandra Edwards, Torrieann Dooley, Gloria Brinkman and Phil Carver.

July 22, 2014 — Five Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools (CMS) teachers are representing Charlotte Teachers Institute (CTI) as 2014 Yale National Fellows in “life changing” seminars at the Yale National Initiative to strengthen teaching in public schools® (YNI) in New Haven, CT. These CTI Yale National Fellows rank among 60 educators from across the country selected for Yale seminars designed to provide public school teachers with deeper knowledge of the subjects they teach and enhance their leadership development at the local level. The 2014 YNI seminars began with a long weekend session in May, followed by a two-week summer intensive session July 7-18, and culminate at the YNI annual meeting in October.

Yale National Fellows represent 17 school districts in nine states, including those from existing Institutes in Charlotte, NC; New Castle County, DE; New Haven, CT; Philadelphia, PA; and Pittsburgh, PA.  CTI National Fellows and their Yale seminars and professors include:

  • Gloria Brinkman, visual art, North Mecklenburg High School — “Eloquence,” led by Joseph R. Roach, Sterling Professor of theater and professor of English, African American studies and American studies;
  • Phil Carver, science, James Martin Middle School — “Microbes Rule,” led by Paul E. Turner, professor of ecology and evolutionary biology.
  • Torrieann Dooley, 2nd grade, David Cox Road Elementary School — “Place Value, Fractions, and Algebra: Improving Content Learning through the Practice Standards,” led by Roger E. Howe, professor of Mathematics;
  • Alexandra Edwards, social studies, Bailey Middle School — “Understanding History and Society through Images, 1776-1914,” led by Timothy J. Barringer, professor of History of Art;
  • Teresa Strohl, visual art, Barringer Academic Center — “Playing with Poems: Rules, Tools, and Games,” led by Langdon L. Hammer, professor of English.

Dooley also serves on the YNI National Steering Committee. Dooley, Brinkman and Edwards are previous CTI National Fellows, while Carver and Strohl are participating at Yale for the first time. Strohl, moved to tears by her first summer session at Yale declared, “This whole experience is life changing! The camaraderie that exists between teachers from across the country and from seminar leaders at Yale is beyond any other collaborative work I’ve encountered.” Strohl’s colleagues enthusiastically agreed:

Dooley: “Yale was amazing. My seminar leader stretched and challenged me as a learner. Being around other teachers in such a positive and professional environment makes me really excited about being a teacher. I’m looking forward to teaching the curriculum unit I wrote and sharing my work with other teachers.

Edwards:“The opportunity to participate in YNI gives me the ability to work with such amazing Yale leaders and teachers from across the nation. The unit I produce will change the way my students really see U.S. and North Carolina history.”

Carver:“The Yale National Initiative Intensive Session is a unique opportunity to visit Yale, interact with some of the most distinguished college professors in the world, and become a published author. The seminar fellows are treated like royalty, and receive all the perks of being a faculty member for a few weeks. The Yale experience is definitely the most unique and prestigious professional development a classroom teacher can attend.”

Brinkman: “The Yale Intensive Session was a truly elevating experience. The seminar content on ‘Eloquence’ was as rich as it was fun.  I am so excited about the development of my curriculum unit for which I received incredible support and encouragement. I can’t wait to teach it in my classroom to guide my students’ to eloquence in critical response and persuasive public speaking. It was thrilling this year to be welcomed back as a member of the Yale community and to collaborate with YNI friends and fellows from around the country as we worked toward common goals for both our classrooms and our local teacher institutes. The privilege of being a Yale National Fellow is like no other educator professional development opportunity.”

All five National Fellows are also local CTI Fellows, among over 100 CMS teachers currently engaged in Charlotte-based CTI seminars led by Davidson College and UNC Charlotte faculty. Also attending the initial week of the YNI Summer Session in New Haven were CTI Director Scott Gartlan and three of CTI’s eight local seminar leaders: Davidson College Professors Shelley Rigger (political science) and Durwin Striplin (chemistry) and UNC Charlotte Professor Alan Rauch (English). Rigger serves on the YNI’s University Advisory Council.

CTI is in its sixth year of presenting local, long-term seminars led by Davidson College and UNC Charlotte professors. To date, more than 300 CMS teachers, teaching more than 62,600 students, have participated in local CTI seminars. CTI and its partners were recognized by the Council of Great City Schools with its 2013 Shirley S. Schwartz Urban Education Impact Award. CTI is made possible by a joint commitment of resources from CMS, Davidson College and UNC Charlotte and through the generosity of private funding institutions such as the Arthur Vining Davis Jr. Foundations, The Belk Foundation, Duke Energy, Piedmont Natural Gas Foundation and the Wells Fargo Foundation. The institute is housed at UNC Charlotte within the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences.

For more information visit the CTI website at: www.charlotteteachers.org or contact CTI Executive Director Scott Gartlan, 704-687-0078, scott.gartlan@uncc.edu.

For information about the YNI visit: www.teachers.yale.edu.

CTI News Press Releases

CTI Welcomes 2014 Cohort of 104 CMS Teachers and New Partnerships with Discovery Place and Gantt Center

CHARLOTTE – May 2014 – Charlotte Teachers Institute (CTI) has accepted a new cohort of 104 Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools (CMS) teachers into its innovative, interdisciplinary seminars for 2014, involving new partnerships with Discovery Place and the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture. “We are beyond excited to welcome our new CTI Fellows and provide them with the opportunity to work with icons of the scientific and cultural scene in the greater Charlotte community,” said CTI Executive Director Scott Gartlan. “These partnerships will provide full access for our teachers to explore ideas and artifacts in innovative ways to improve their curriculum.”

Four of CTI’s eight, seven-month, small group seminars will meet at Discovery Place:
•  Artificial Intelligence – Raghuram Ramanujan, assistant professor of mathematics and computer science at Davidson College
•  The Global Energy Challenge – Durwin Striplin, professor of chemistry, Davidson College
•  Metamorphosis: Transformative Experiences – Amy Ringwood, associate professor of biological sciences at UNC Charlotte
•  Intersections of Science Technology and Culture – Alan Rauch, professor of English at UNC Charlotte.

“Changes to science and technology happen rapidly, and it can be challenging for classroom educators to maintain an expert level of understanding in these technical concepts. Through our new Discovery Place Education Studio for professional development, we are thrilled to partner with Charlotte Teachers Institute to bring these learning experiences to our Charlotte teachers,” said Discovery Place President and CEO Catherine Horne.

The Harvey B. Gantt Center will host CTI’s Visual Storytelling in Children’s and Young Adult Literature seminar, led by UNC Charlotte Associate Professor of English Paula Connolly. “Enriching the education of K-12 students by serving as a resource for teachers is one of three strategic objectives that inform all that we do at the Harvey B. Gantt Center. This partnership with Charlotte Teachers Institute supports our objectives and will also allow us to increase access to traveling exhibitions and our permanent collection, particularly the John & Vivian Hewitt Collection of African-American Art. As a result of this collaboration, the Fellows have become an extension of our small staff and will help expand our reach exponentially,” said Harvey B. Gantt Center President and CEO David R. Taylor.

Two seminars take place at Davidson College (The Art of Fiction: Close Analysis, Style and the Novel led by Davidson’s Associate Professor of English Maria Fackler, and Human Agency led by Davidson Associate Professor of Philosophy Meghan Griffith). Heroes, Rebels and Rock Stars: Cultural Icons in Modern Europe led by UNC Charlotte Associate Professor of History Heather Perry meets on UNC Charlotte’s main campus.

CTI Fellows from all eight seminars began with an orientation at Discovery Place in April and will continue to meet in their individual seminar groups through November 2014. Gartlan noted that all 104 Fellows (13 teachers in each of the eight seminars) and the seminar leaders receive free Discovery Place and Gantt Center memberships to further their independent research and cultural connections in the community.

About Charlotte Teachers Institute

Through seminars led by UNC Charlotte and Davidson College faculty, CMS teachers learn new content, work collaboratively with other teachers, and develop new curricula for their students. Teachers serve as leaders in the institute and choose seminar topics they deem most important and engaging for current CMS teachers and their students. To date, more than 350 CMS teachers have participated in CTI seminars teaching more than 70,000 students.

An affiliate of the Yale National Initiative at Yale University, CTI provides high quality teacher professional development led by expert university and college faculty. Programs include seven-month long, content-rich seminars and special events for teachers, as well as community presentations such as the popular Exploding Canons cultural collaboration series. CTI and its partners were recognized by the Council of Great City Schools with its 2013 Shirley S. Schwartz Urban Education Impact Award.

CTI programs are made possible by a joint commitment of resources from CMS, Davidson College and UNC Charlotte and through the generosity of private funding institutions such as the Arthur Vining Davis Jr. Foundations, The Belk Foundation, Piedmont Natural Gas Foundation and the Wells Fargo Foundation. The institute is housed at UNC Charlotte within the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences.

2014 CTI Fellows (by seminar) include:

Artificial Intelligence
Lisa Ashworth, Barringer Academic Center
Angela Bates, CATO Middle College High School
Aletha Bland, West Mecklenburg High School
Kara Boneillo, Reedy Creek Elementary School
Phil Carver, James Martin Middle School
Stephanie Coggins, Bailey Middle School
Katelyn Gardepe, David Cox Road Elementary School
Matthew Kelly, Independence High School
Aaron Kollar, Piedmont Open IB Middle School
Stephanie Misko, W.A. Hough High School
Tracey Surrett, Irwin Academic Center
Jill Ward, Elizabeth Traditional Elementary School
Lana Withrow, Barringer Academic Center

Heroes, Rebels and Rock Stars: Cultural Icons in Modern Europe
Amanda Armstrong, Carmel Middle School
Miranda Bellamy, James Martin Middle School
Mawuena Dabla-Egui, Harding University High School
Jennifer Dalesandro, Bain Elementary School
Kathryn Heinen, East Mecklenburg High School
Holly Lambert, Lincoln Heights Academy
Elizabeth Lasure, Mallard Creek High School
Joshua Lemere, Barringer Academic Center
Archie Livingston, Jr., Alexander Graham Middle School
Christina Sissoko, Elizabeth Traditional Elementary School
Mary Tew, Davidson Elementary School
Roshan Varghese, Butler High School

Brooke Wilson, West Mecklenburg High School

Human Agency
Morgan Andrews, W.A. Hough High School
Sean “Brad” Baker, W.A. Hough High School

Cassandra Black, Ashley Park Elementary School
Laura Champury, Francis Bradley Middle School
Constance Danna, Lebanon Road Elementary School
Lewis Davidson, Mallard Creek High School
Lisa Hagen, North Mecklenburg High School
Torrieann Dooley Kennedy, David Cox Road Elementary School
Amy LaLonde, Tuckaseegee Elementary School
Kendra McCall, Reedy Creek Elementary School
Erin Muffler, Barringer Academic Center
Heather Nash, East Mecklenburg High School
Hannah Wenger, Harding University High School

Intersections of Science, Technology and Culture
Rosa Bockian, Collinswood Language Academy
Stefanie Carter-Dodson, Southwest Middle School
Georgina Fiorentino, Reedy Creek Elementary School
Tavia Highsmith, Albemarle Road Middle School
Michele Lemere, Garinger High School
Christian Lott, West Mecklenburg High School
Melanie Mowry, Francis Bradley Middle School
Wendy Potter, Butler High School
Kari Rhoades, Mallard Creek High School
Debra Semmler, East Mecklenburg High School
Jennifer Thompson, James Martin Middle School
Michelle Tufano, W. A. Hough High School

Richard Whitehead, Northwest School of the Arts

Metamorphosis: Transformative Experiences
Cynthia Benes, Harding University High School
Sheena Burrus, Clear Creek Elementary School
Caitlin Cook, Bain Elementary School
Mary Fabian, CATO Middle College High School
Nikki Guevara, Bain Elementary School
Maebeth Hill, North Mecklenburg High School
Janet Raybon, Myers Park High School
Julie Ruziska Tiddy, Carmel Middle School
Rima Solh, Eastway Middle School
Rochelle Stanley, Garinger High School
Alan Vitale, W.A. Hough High School
Connie Wood, East Mecklenburg High School
Cynthia Woolery, Elizabeth Traditional Elementary School

The Art of Fiction: Close Analysis, Style and the Novel
Angela Burke, Vance High School
Calen Clifton, Martin Luther King Middle School
Tiffany Craig, Allenbrook Elementary School
Kayla D’Allura, Collinswood Language Academy
Alexandra Edwards, Bailey Middle School
Angelina McCurry, Alexander Graham Middle School
Jennifer Ladanyi, Bailey Middle School
Courtney McNair, Butler High School
Megan Shellenberger, W.A. Hough High School
Elizabeth Smiley, Torrence Creek Elementary School
Amy Stokes, Lebanon Road Elementary School
Christina Varney, Stoney Creek Elementary School

The Global Energy Challenge
Gloria Brinkman, North Mecklenburg High School
Jeanne Cooper, Mallard Creek High School
NaToya Dingle, Coulwood Middle School
DeNise Gerst, Barringer Academic Center
Melanie Kirschner, Albemarle Road Elementary School
Lisa Lewis, Collinswood Language Academy
Robin Mitchell, Randolph Middle School
Delanie Reavis-Bey, Crestdale Middle School
Adora Reid, James Martin Middle School
Jacquelyn Smith, W.A. Hough High School
Kory Trosclair, Bailey Middle School
Rachel Varghese, Butler High School
Alicia Waters, Grand Oak Elementary School

Visual Storytelling in Children’s and YA Literature
Angela Boyce-Thornton, Ashley Park PreK-8 School

Justine Busto, East Mecklenburg High School
Brandy Daniels, Irwin Academic Center
Deborah Ferris, Hopewell High School
Miesha Gadsden, Lansdowne Elementary School
Mary Catherine, Grant David Cox Road Elementary School
Danielle Gregory, Albemarle Road Elementary School
Tara Lee, Bailey Middle School
Ebone Lockett, West Mecklenburg High School
Delee Marciano, Randolph Middle School
Kimberly Palmer,Ridge Road Middle School
Teresa Strohl, Barringer Academic Center
Barbara Wesselman, Northwest School of the Arts

For more information, contact CTI Executive Director Scott Gartlan, 704-687-0078, scott.gartlan@uncc.edu

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools media contact: Tahira Stalberte, 980-343-0954 tahira.stalberte@cms.k12.nc.us

Davidson College Public Relations media contact: Bill Giduz, 704-894-2244, bigiduz@davidson.edu

UNC Charlotte Public Relations media contact: Buffie Stephens, 704-687-5830, BuffieStephens@uncc.edu

CTI News News Press Releases

Wells Fargo Awards $50,000 to CTI

CHARLOTTE – June 6, 2013 – Wells Fargo has awarded $50,000 to support the Charlotte Teachers Institute, an innovative partnership among UNC Charlotte, Davidson College and Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools (CMS) to strengthen teaching and learning in local public schools by cultivating content knowledge, creativity, leadership skills and collaboration among CMS teachers.

“Charlotte Teachers Institute provides a significant career development opportunity for teachers in our region,” said Jay Everette, community affairs manager at Wells Fargo. “By participating in the program, teachers create new, compelling classroom curriculum that is then shared nationally with other educators.”

Wells Fargo has supported the institute since CTI’s inception in 2009.

“Teachers and students in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools have benefitted significantly from the visionary support of Wells Fargo,” said CTI Executive Director Scott Gartlan. “Wells Fargo and CTI share a commitment to excellence, collaboration and leadership.”

This most recent gift will support CTI’s general programming, including seminars that began in late April. Through these seminars led by UNC Charlotte and Davidson College faculty, CMS teachers learn new content, work collaboratively with other teachers, and develop new curricula for their students. Teachers serve as leaders in the institute and choose seminar topics they deem most important and engaging for current CMS teachers and their students. More than 260 CMS teachers, teaching 50,000 students, have participated in the CTI seminars.

An affiliate of the Yale National Initiative at Yale University, CTI provides high quality teacher professional development led by expert university and college faculty. Programs include the seven-month long series of seminars and special events for teachers, and community presentations, such as the popular Exploding Canons cultural collaboration series.

Currently, 104 CMS teachers in grades K-12 are enrolled in seminars that continue until December. The seminars’ weekly meetings recess during the summer, while teachers immerse themselves in reading and research related to the curriculum units they are developing for their students. These curriculum units generate learning beyond each teacher’s classroom, as the final units are shared with teachers’ school colleagues and are also published on the CTI and Yale National Initiative websites, making them accessible to teachers worldwide.

CTI programs are made possible by a joint commitment of resources from CMS, Davidson College and UNC Charlotte and through the generosity of private funding institutions such as Wells Fargo. The institute is housed at UNC Charlotte within the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences.

For more information, contact CTI Executive Director Scott Gartlan at, scott.gartlan@uncc.edu or 704-687-0078.

About Wells Fargo

Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC) is a nationwide, diversified, community-based financial services company with $1.4 trillion in assets. Founded in 1852 and headquartered in San Francisco, Wells Fargo provides banking, insurance, investments, mortgage, and consumer and commercial finance through more than 9,000 stores, 12,000 ATMs, and the Internet (wellsfargo.com), and has offices in more than 35 countries to support the bank’s customers who conduct business in the global economy. With more than 270,000 team members, Wells Fargo serves one in three households in the United States. Wells Fargo & Company was ranked No. 25 on Fortune’s 2013 rankings of America’s largest corporations. Wells Fargo’s vision is to satisfy all our customers’ financial needs and help them succeed financially.

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CTI News News Press Releases

Charlotte Teachers Institute Accepts 104 CMS Teachers as CTI Fellows

CHARLOTTE – May 27, 2013 – Charlotte Teachers Institute has accepted 104 Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools teachers into its innovative professional development program that kicked off this spring. These teachers come from 15 subject areas in 43 schools, in grades K-12.

The teachers will work with faculty from Davidson College and UNC Charlotte in a long-term effort that will challenge them to explore content areas and expand their own ideas for new curriculum, with guidance from the faculty. Seminars and their faculty seminar leaders include:

  • Charlotte as a New South City: Using the Collections of the Levine Museum of the New South,  Shep McKinley, History, UNC Charlotte
  • The Nature of Energy: How We Use and Store It  to Power Our Everyday Lives, Susan Trammell, Physics, UNC Charlotte
  • Math and Sports, Tim Chartier, Mathematics, Davidson College
  • Imagining Modern Bodies: Disability and Art at the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art, Ann Fox, English, Davidson College
  • Grammar for the Real World, Ralf Thiede, Linguistics, UNC Charlotte
  • Human Social Groups, Lisa Slattery Walker, Sociology, UNC Charlotte
  • Chemical Magic, Durwin R. Striplin, Chemistry, Davidson College
  • Urban Encounters: Hispanic and African American Literature, Brenda Flanagan, English, Davidson College

Teachers will discuss and research the topics and collaborate on ideas to teach new content to their students in engaging ways. Their study culminates with each teacher creating an original curriculum unit to be taught in his or her classroom and to be published on the CTI website. Each Fellow is enrolled in one of CTI’s eight seminars throughout the entire period.

“We kicked off this year with our interactive orientation at Discovery Place,” said CTI Executive Director Scott Gartlan. “The CTI Fellows will participate in three spring seminar meetings followed by independent summer study. We will pick up with weekly meetings again in September through November. This combination of collaborative work and independent research has proven quite effective in helping teachers explore their ideas.”

CTI is an affiliate of the Yale National Initiative to Strengthen Teaching in Public Schools and also links its Fellows’ units to the YNI website at Yale University as part of a national curricular resource bank for teachers.

“High quality professional development programs have common key characteristics,” Gartlan said. “They focus on content knowledge linked to pedagogy, teacher leadership, extended duration, collective participation and collaboration, and innovative and active teacher learning.”  He noted these characteristics are the pillars of CTI’s professional development program.

Fellows in this year’s CTI seminars are a diverse group of new and experienced teachers with an average of 11 years’ teaching experience. They represent the full range of K-12 instructional levels and a wide variety of disciplines: art, bilingual education, biology, chemistry, drama, earth science, English, French, history, math, media, physics, social studies, Spanish, and special education.

Charlotte Teachers Institute is an educational partnership among Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, Davidson College and the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. CTI cultivates content-knowledge, creativity, leadership skills and collaboration within and among Charlotte’s public school teachers. Programs include long-term seminars and special events for teachers, as well as community presentations such as its “Exploding Canons” interdisciplinary discussion series. Resources come from the three Institute partners and private funding institutions, such as the Arthur Vining Davis Foundations, the Belk Foundation, the Piedmont Natural Gas Foundation and the Wells Fargo Foundation. The Institute is housed at UNC Charlotte within its College of Liberal Arts & Sciences.

For a complete listing of the 2013 CTI Fellows, visit www.charlotteteachers.org.

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For more information, contact CTI Executive Director Scott Gartlan, 704-687-0078, scott.gartlan@uncc.edu

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools media contact: Tahira Stalberte, 980-343-0954 tahira.stalberte@cms.k12.nc.us

Davidson College Public Relations media contact: Bill Giduz, 704-894-2244, bigiduz@davidson.edu

UNC Charlotte Public Relations media contact: Buffie Stephens, 704-687-5830, BuffieStephens@uncc.edu

Press Releases

Charlotte Teachers Institute Presents ‘Teachers as Scholars’ at the Gantt Center

CMS Teachers to Discuss New Civil Rights Curriculum

CHARLOTTE – Feb. 5, 2013 – Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools teachers will share new curriculum they created about African American literature relating to civil rights, from 5:30 to 8 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 7, at the Gantt Center for African American Art + Culture in uptown Charlotte.

Sponsored by Charlotte Teachers Institute, the Gantt Center and PNC Bank, this “Teachers as Scholars” event will feature CMS teachers who collaborated in an intensive, semester-long CTI seminar, “African American Literature of the Civil Rights Movement.” Brenda Flanagan, the Edward Armfield Professor of English at Davidson College, led the seminar.

Flanagan’s seminar explored the Black Arts Movement and poetry and drama that reflected and paralleled the modern civil rights movement from 1955 to 2000. The CMS teacher fellows produced 13 extensive and student-centered curriculum units for teachers in kindergarten through high school classrooms. Three of these teachers, from elementary, middle and high school levels, will present their work during the Feb. 7 program.

“One of CTI’s strategic goals is to provide opportunities to showcase CMS teachers’ innovative scholarship created in CTI seminars to a wider community audience,” said Scott Gartlan, CTI executive director. “This partnership with the Gantt Center will serve as an important step in fulfilling this goal.”

Free and open to the public, the event will begin with a reception and viewing of the Gantt exhibition America I AM: The African American Imprint. Presentations and a panel discussion with Flanagan and the three fellows will follow at 6:30 p.m. Featured topics and teachers will include:
• “African American Literature of the Civil Rights Movement” – Flanagan, Davidson College.
• “Using Poetry to Teach Children about the Civil Rights Movement” – Elouise Payton, kindergarten-third-grade teacher, Barringer Academic Center.
• “The Power Perspective: Reading the Literature of the Civil Rights Movement through a Socio-Historical Lens” – Stefanie Carter-Dodson, eighth-grade language arts teacher, Martin Luther King, Jr. Middle School.
• “Art and Black Identity in the Civil Rights Movement” – Larry Bosc, social studies teacher, East Mecklenburg High School.

Each of the 13 teachers in the seminar produced a unique set of curriculum units related to African American literature of the civil rights movement and designed specifically for their own students.
“We hope that these units inspire other teachers to share their creativity with colleagues in an effort to benefit more students in more classrooms across the district,” Gartlan said. Flanagan’s seminar was one of eight CTI conducted on a wide range of topics for a total of 94 CMS teachers from all grade levels and subject areas, led by Davidson College and UNC Charlotte faculty. The units developed in all eight seminars will be posted soon on the CTI and Yale National Initiative websites for use by teachers around the world. CTI recently announced a new set of eight seminars for CMS teachers to begin in April.

Information is available at www.charlotteteachers.org.

About Charlotte Teachers Institute
The Charlotte Teachers Institute (CTI) is an initiative designed to strengthen teaching in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools (CMS) by cultivating content-knowledge, creativity, leadership skills and collaboration within and among Charlotte’s public school teachers. An affiliate of the Yale National Initiative at Yale University, CTI exists as a partnership among CMS, Davidson College, and the University of North Carolina at Charlotte (UNC Charlotte), and is made possible by a joint commitment of resources from all three Institute partners and through the generosity of private funders and community partners. Through intensive, semester-long seminars, led by faculty from UNC Charlotte and Davidson College, CMS teachers learn new content, work collaboratively with other district teachers, and develop curriculum units for their own classrooms. Participating teachers receive continuing education credits and a stipend. For more information, please visit charlotteteachers.org.

About the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African American Art+Culture
The Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture presents, preserves and celebrates excellence in the art, history and culture of African-Americans and those of African descent. The Gantt Center presents the renowned touring exhibition America I AM: The African American Imprint – celebrating nearly 500 years of African American contributions to the United States – through March 3. The Gantt Center is the only African-American cultural institution to host this exhibition and serves as the last venue to house it in the Southeast as the exhibit makes its final tour. Covering more than 10,000 square feet, the exhibition presents a historical continuum of pivotal moments in courage, conviction and creativity that helps to solidify the undeniable imprint of African Americans across the nation and around the world. The more than 200 artifacts and information within the exhibit provide context to how African Americans have contributed to and shaped American culture across four core areas – economic, socio-political, cultural and spiritual – throughout the country’s history, including the
inauguration of the first African-American president. The exhibit fills the Gantt Center galleries with objects as diverse as the typewriter Alex Haley used for his Pulitzer Prize-winning book Roots to Prince’s guitar. Developed in partnership with Tavis Smiley, America I AM: The African American Imprint was organized by Cincinnati Museum Center and Arts and Exhibitions International (AEI), and is made possible by Wal-Mart.

Press Releases

CTI Presents ‘Exploding Canons’ at the McColl Center

Faculty and Artists Explore Time through Art and Science

CHARLOTTE — January 13, 2012 — Exploring and expressing the concept of time intrigues artists and scientists alike, and “Exploding Canons: All the Time in the World” will continue the exploration on Friday, Jan. 25, in an event presented by the Charlotte Teachers Institute (CTI) and the McColl Center for Visual Art.

The evening at the McColl Center begins with a 5:30 p.m. reception, followed by a discussion at 6:30 p.m. when national and local academic experts including the McColl’s visiting artists, will consider time through art, physics, biology, environmental science and personal experiences. Following the panel, the art exhibition “All the Time in the World” will remain open until 9 p.m. CTI designed the event in conjunction with the exhibition, which opens that evening.

“The McColl Center has been a leader in arts integration in the Charlotte community for many years,” said CTI Director Scott Gartlan. “This natural collaboration expands our signature approach to interdisciplinary study by showcasing six scholars from four states in six different educational institutions from Stanford University to the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools. This will be an unprecedented cultural and scientific event.”

The exhibition features video, installation and mixed media work by Gail Wight, associate professor of art practice at Stanford University, and Mary Tsiongas, associate professor of art and art history at the University of New Mexico. Exhibition curator Arif Khan, curator of art at the Clay Center for Arts & Sciences, said the exhibition “explores creative ways of expressing or marking time and shows how an understanding of science can influence the practice of contemporary art.”

Topics and presenters in the panel discussion are:

  • “Visualizing the Invisible Universe: From the Very Large to the Very Small” – Mario Belloni, professor of physics, Davidson College.
  • “Images of Time: Photography and Film in Contemporary Art” – Jae Emerling, professor of art and art history, UNC Charlotte.
  • “Reflecting Sustainability Through Art: Production, Consumption and Waste in the Modern World” – Beth Lasure, art teacher, Mallard Creek High School.

Lasure, a founding teacher leader in CTI, was recently named a McColl Center Artist-in-Residence. Her remarks will focus on curriculum ideas related to art and science she developed in a recent CTI seminar. Khan will moderate the panel. Wight and Tsiongas will join the local academics in the discussion, which includes a question and answer period.

The Exploding Canons program and the McColl Center exhibition are free and open to the public. CMS educators from all grades and subject areas are especially encouraged to attend. Seating for the Exploding Canons program is limited, so registration at the CTI website (www.charlotteteachers.org) is recommended.

The McColl Center is located at 721 N. Tryon St. in uptown Charlotte. Free parking is available in the McColl Center lot at the corner of 10th and Church streets. Metered parking is also available on 10th, Church and Tryon streets (free after 6 p.m.). Handicapped-accessible parking is located in the small lot directly behind the McColl Center on Church Street.

The “Exploding Canons” speakers series optimizes the partnerships among CTI to offer educators and the public collaborative educational opportunities that highlight university and college faculty, explore diverse topics in an interdisciplinary manner, and encourage community conversation.  This marks the eighth event in the “Exploding Canons” series, which has served more than 1,500 people, half of whom were CMS teachers.

Press Releases

Charlotte Teachers Institute Honors 94 Teachers for Seminar Achievements

Charlotte Teachers Institute (CTI) Honors 94 Teachers for Seminar Achievements

CHARLOTTE – Dec. 19, 2012 – Charlotte Teachers Institute recently honored 94 teachers in the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools for accomplishments that include the writing of 1,900 pages of new curriculum accessible by teachers worldwide.

The teachers, called CTI Fellows, completed CTI seminars led by Davidson College and UNC Charlotte professors. They expanded the impact of what they were learning by developing the new curriculum units for their own students, and for other teachers via the CTI and Yale National Initiative (YNI) websites. CTI recognized Fellows’ work at its 2012 Fellows’ Finale Celebration at the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art.

The educators represent every grade level, with 29 elementary, 25 middle, and 40 high school teachers. They teach subjects ranging from art to biology, world history to foreign languages and ESL, language arts and costume design to physics, and math to technology.

“Together, these teachers spent nearly 3,000 hours attending CTI seminars at Davidson College and UNC Charlotte,” said CTI Executive Director Scott Gartlan. “In addition, they spent time reading and researching, and writing the original curriculum units. They plan to share their curriculum units with nearly 500 other CMS teachers and 7,425 CMS students will learn from the units the teachers created this year.”

“CTI provides teachers and higher education faculty with a transformative experience that changes their teaching forever,” Gartlan added. “This year’s Fellows have collectively taught for over 1,080 years, or 11.6 years per teacher. Of those combined years, they have taught 807 in CMS.  They plan to teach a combined 1,177 additional years.”

In a recent CTI/Yale National Initiative survey, a CTI Fellow spoke of the initiative’s impact. “CTI has helped me grow into a better teacher by reminding me that I must constantly evaluate my effectiveness and look for opportunities to improve, even in the smallest of ways,” the teacher said.

Each year, CTI teacher leaders request and select seminars designed in conjunction with UNC Charlotte and Davidson College faculty. A CMS teacher coordinates each seminar, in partnership with the higher education faculty member. This year, seminars and seminar leaders included:

  • The Science of NASCAR – Peter Tkacik, mechanical engineering, UNC Charlotte
  • Reading African American Lives – Jeffrey Leak, English, UNC Charlotte
  • Entertaining with Math – Tim Chartier, mathematics, Davidson College
  • American Political Parties: Their Failures and Their Futures – Susan Roberts, political science, Davidson College
  • Reading Media Imagery: Critical Thinking and Literacy, led by Dan Grano, communication studies, UNC Charlotte
  • ‘All Immigration is Local’: Exploring the New Geography of Immigration – Heather Smith, geography and earth sciences, UNC Charlotte
  • African American Literature of the Civil Rights Movement – Brenda Flanagan, English, Davidson College
  • Environmental Science and Climate Change – Cindy Hauser, chemistry, Davidson College

Each CTI Fellow received three continuing education units and a stipend for seminar completion. Additionally, each Fellow is now eligible to apply to attend the YNI Summer Intensive Seminars at Yale University in July 2013.  CTI is one of five Institutes nationwide affiliated with the Yale program, including others in New Haven, CT; Pittsburgh, PA; Philadelphia, PA; and New Castle, DE.  Richmond, VA will be the site of a new Teachers Institute.

The Charlotte Teachers Institute is an educational partnership among Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, Davidson College and the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, working to improve teaching in Charlotte-Mecklenburg public schools. CTI cultivates content-knowledge, creativity, leadership skills and collaboration within and among Charlotte’s public school teachers. Programs include long-term seminars and special events for teachers, as well as community presentations such as its “Exploding Canons” interdisciplinary discussion series. Resources come from the three Institute partners and private funding institutions, such as the Arthur Vining Davis Foundations, the Belk Foundation, the Piedmont Natural Gas Foundation and the Wells Fargo Foundation. The Institute is housed at UNC Charlotte within the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences.

For more information, contact CTI Executive Director Scott Gartlan, 704-687-2026, info@charlotteteachers.org.

 

 

CTI News Events Exploding Canons Press Releases

Exploding Canons: Sustainability in Charlotte and Beyond – 10/16/12

Charlotte Teachers Institute’s “Exploding Canons” speakers series sets its sights on sustainable living in an interdisciplinary panel discussion and information expo on Tuesday, October 16, 2012 from 5:30 to 9 p.m., at UNC Charlotte Center City at 320 E. 9thStreet.

Academic and community experts from a variety of disciplines and backgrounds will examine the topic of sustainability, at the “Sustainability in Charlotte and Beyond” event. Sponsored by Piedmont Natural Gas with support from the Charlotte Nature Museum and Discovery Place, the event is free and open to the public.

“The breadth of speakers on this Exploding Canons panel reflects the relation of sustainability to many aspects of life,” said CTI Executive Director Scott Gartlan. “The expo will present a wide representation of organizations and businesses who are working diligently to address current needs without compromising the needs of future generations. This will be a great opportunity for the community to connect with academic experts in a variety of fields, as well as get practical information about daily living and viable business choices.”

The event begins with a reception and information expo in the atrium at 5:30 p.m., followed by the panel discussion from 6:30 to 8 p.m. in the auditorium. The panel includes faculty from Davidson College, UNC Charlotte, Wake Forest University and Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools. Follow-up conversation, coffee and the expo continue after the panel discussion until 9 p.m.  Space is limited, so registration at http://charlotteteachers.org is recommended. CMS teachers and administrators from all grade levels and subject areas are especially encouraged to attend.

Featured topics and speakers include:

  • “The Politics of Sustainability,” Graham Bullock, assistant professor of political science and environmental studies, Davidson College
  • “The Business Case for Sustainability,” Dan Fogel, executive professor of business and associate director of the Center for Energy, Environment & Sustainability, Wake Forest University
  • “Air Quality: When the ‘Top Ten’ is Not the Goal,” Cindy DeForest Hauser, associate professor of chemistry, Davidson College
  • “Visualizing Alternative Futures of Urbanization and Sustainable Growth,” Ross Meentemeyer, professor of geography and earth sciences and executive director of the Center for Applied Geographic Information Science, UNC Charlotte
  • “Small Changes/Big Results: Creating a Positive Impact on the Environment,” Jashonai Payne, 5th grade teacher, Clear Creek Elementary School; and Deb Semmler, physics teacher, East Mecklenburg High School
  • “New Materials for Modern Infrastructure,” Brett Tempest, assistant professor of civil and environmental engineering, UNC Charlotte

Rob Phocas, energy and sustainability manager for the City of Charlotte, will serve as moderator for the panel discussion.

Participating groups in the information expo include Catawba River District, Center for Sustainability/Central Piedmont Community College, Charlotte Mecklenburg Storm Water Services, Charlotte Nature Museum, City of Charlotte, Clean Air Carolina, Davidson College’s Office of Sustainability, Discovery Place, Duke Energy – Smart Energy Now, Envision Charlotte, Friendship Gardens, Garinger High School Fit and Green, Juice from Juice, McColl Center for Visual Art, Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation Greenway Program, Mecklenburg County Solid Waste Services (Wipe Out Waste), North Carolina Air Awareness, North Carolina Sustainable Energy Association, Piedmont Natural Gas , Project for Innovation, Energy and Sustainability – North Carolina (PiES), Queen City Forward, Sustain Charlotte, UNC Charlotte Levine Scholars Program, UNC Charlotte’s Office of Sustainability, US Green Buildings Council – Charlotte Region Chapter, and others.

The “Exploding Canons” speakers series leverages the partnerships among CTI to offer educators and the public collaborative educational opportunities that highlight university and college faculty, explore diverse topics in an interdisciplinary manner, and encourage community conversation.

About the Charlotte Teachers Institute

The Charlotte Teachers Institute is an educational partnership among Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, Davidson College and the University of North Carolina at Charlotte that works to improve teaching in Charlotte-Mecklenburg public schools. An affiliate of the Yale National Initiative at Yale University, CTI cultivates content-knowledge, creativity, leadership skills and collaboration within and among Charlotte’s public school teachers. Programs include long-term seminars and special events for teachers, as well as community presentations. CTI’s “Exploding Canons” events engage and educate CMS teachers and the community-at-large, as CTI and a variety of partnering organizations produce forums for college and university faculty and other educators to examine topics through multi-disciplinary lenses.

CTI programs are made possible by a joint commitment of resources from all three Institute partners and through the generosity of private funding institutions such as the Arthur Vining Davis Foundations, the Belk Foundation, and the Wells Fargo Foundation. The institute is housed at UNC Charlotte within the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences.

Currently, 102 CMS teachers in grades K-12 are enrolled in eight, multidisciplinary seminars that began in the spring and continue until December. The seminars’ weekly meetings recess during the summer, while teachers immerse themselves in reading and research related to curriculum units they are developing for their students. These curriculum units generate learning beyond each teacher’s classroom, as the final units are shared with teachers’ school colleagues and are also published on the CTI and Yale National Initiative websites, making them accessible to teachers worldwide.

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For more information, contact CTI Executive Director Scott Gartlan, 704-687-2026, info@charlotteteachers.org

 

Press Releases

(8/24/2012) Charlotte Teachers Institute Receives $50,000 from The Wells Fargo Foundation

CHARLOTTE – Aug. 24, 2012 – The Charlotte Teachers Institute has received a $50,000 gift from The Wells Fargo Foundation to support the institute’s work in strengthening teaching in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools.

“We are thrilled to receive this confident and sustained support from such a well respected member of our community as the Wells Fargo Foundation,” said Scott Gartlan, CTI executive director. “Our work is focused on making connections between public school teachers and university professors to meet the needs of students in the classroom. This gift will allow us to continue this work.”

An innovative partnership among the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, Davidson College and CMS, Charlotte Teachers Institute brings together faculty, staff and other resources to engage teachers in academic seminars. The Wells Fargo Foundation presented its gift to the UNC Charlotte Foundation on behalf of CTI.

“The Wells Fargo Foundation continues to be impressed with the professional development Charlotte Teachers Institute offers our local teachers,” said Jay Everette, community affairs manager at Well Fargo, “Many participants say that this program helps them teach with more impact and passion. We also like the fact that curriculum created by these educators through their experience with Charlotte Teachers Institute is shared nationally with other educators via Yale University.”

The Wells Fargo Foundation has supported the institute since CTI’s inception in 2009. This most recent gift will support CTI’s general programming, including the 2012 round of seminars which began in late April. Through seminars led by UNC Charlotte and Davidson College faculty, CMS teachers learn new content, work collaboratively with other teachers, and develop new curricula for their students. Teachers serve as leaders in the institute and choose seminar topics they deem most important and engaging for current CMS teachers and their students.  To date, more than 200 CMS teachers have participated in the Charlotte Teachers Institute seminars teaching more than 40,000 students.

An affiliate of the Yale National Initiative at Yale University, CTI cultivates content-knowledge, creativity, leadership skills and collaboration. Programs include long-term seminars and special events for teachers, as well as community presentations such as the popular Exploding Canons cultural collaboration series.

Currently, 102 CMS teachers in grades K-12 are enrolled in eight, multidisciplinary seminars that continue until December. The seminars’ weekly meetings recess during the summer, while teachers immerse themselves in reading and research related to the curriculum units they are developing for their students. These curriculum units generate learning beyond each teacher’s classroom, as the final units are shared with teachers’ school colleagues and are also published on the CTI and Yale National Initiative websites, making them accessible to teachers worldwide.

CTI programs are made possible by a joint commitment of resources from all three Institute partners and through the generosity of private funding institutions such as The Wells Fargo Foundation. The institute is housed at UNC Charlotte within the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences.

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For more information, contact CTI Executive Director Scott Gartlan at scott.gartlan@uncc.edu or 704-687-2026.

Press Releases

(4/3/12) CTI Presents “Exploding Canons: Violins of Hope, Courage and Music”

CHARLOTTE — April 3, 2012 — Charlotte Teachers Institute will present “Exploding Canons: Violins of Hope, Courage and Music” from 5:15 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on Monday, April 16, at UNC Charlotte Center City. Local academic experts and music educators will reflect on 18 revealing violins and their extraordinary histories related to the Holocaust, considering their structure, their pasts and their power. The audience also will have the opportunity to view the instruments and meet the visionaries who brought the “Violins of Hope” exhibition to life.

Israeli master violinmaker Amnon Weinstein collected and carefully restored the violins and gathered their stories to give voice to the people they represent. Weinstein’s Violins of Hope were first played publicly in 2008 and are making their first journey to the Americas in this debut exhibition at UNC Charlotte Center City April 15-22.

This Exploding Canons series event offers something special for the Charlotte community, says CTI Executive Director Scott Gartlan.  “This is an opportunity for us to share the work and passion of Amnon and Assi Weinstein,” Gartlan says. “We are incredibly fortunate to have four professors, two teachers and the Weinsteins in one place on one night to illuminate the beauty, mystery, and music of these violins.”

“Exploding Canons: Violins of Hope, Courage and Music” begins with a reception in the Center City Atrium at 5:15 pm., followed by the panel discussion from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m. in the Center City Auditorium. The Center City Gallery’s Violins of Hope exhibition will remain open until 9:00 pm.

Writer Assaela (Assi) Bielski Weinstein, wife of Amnon and daughter of one the Bielski partisans, will provide the welcome address. Featured topics and presenters for the Exploding Canons panel discussion include:

  • “Strings + Wood = Violin?” – Dan Boye, professor of physics, Davidson College
  • “Music: A Human Response” –  Rebecca Engen, associate professor and director of music therapy, Queens University of Charlotte
  •  “The Violins of Hope in the Holocaust “ – Jay Grymes, associate professor of musicology, UNC Charlotte

Ken Lambla, dean of UNC Charlotte’s College of Arts + Architecture and a key organizer for “Violins of Hope” in Charlotte, will moderate the panel discussion. Musical performances on violin and cello by Jennifer Frisina, orchestra director at Randolph IB and Alexander Graham Middle Schools, and Leigh Marsh, orchestra director at South Mecklenburg High School and Quail Hollow Middle School, will complete the program.

CTI’s “Exploding Canons: Violins of Hope, Courage and Music” is sponsored by the John S. & James L. Knight Foundation and CTI’s educational partners: UNC Charlotte, Davidson College and CMS. Community partners include the Charlotte Symphony, Musical Minds and WFAE 90.7. The “Exploding Canons” speakers series leverages the partnerships among CTI to offer educators and the public collaborative educational opportunities that highlight university and college faculty, explore diverse topics in an interdisciplinary manner, and encourage community conversation.

This “Exploding Canons” event is free and open to the public. For more information and registration visit CTI’s website at www.charlotteteachers.org. CMS teachers and administrators from all grade levels and subject areas are especially encouraged to attend.  Seats are limited and will be reserved on a first-come, first-served basis.

UNC Charlotte Center City is located at 320 E. 9th Street, at the corner of Ninth and Brevard streets.  Parking  is available for $5 at the 707 N. Brevard Street parking lot at the intersection with 11th Street.

 

About the Charlotte Teachers Institute

The Charlotte Teachers Institute, a collaboration among Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, Davidson College and the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, cultivates content-knowledge, creativity, leadership skills and collaboration within and among Charlotte’s public school teachers through intensive, long-term seminars and a variety of educational events. CTI’s “Exploding Canons” events engage and educate CMS teachers and the community-at-large, as CTI and a variety of partnering organizations produce forums for college and university faculty and other educators to examine topics through multi-disciplinary lenses. CTI is made possible by generous support from the Arthur Vining Davis Foundations, the Wells Fargo Foundation, the Belk Foundation and the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation.

About “Violins of Hope”

“Violins of Hope” is presented in Charlotte by UNC Charlotte’s College of Arts + Architecture in partnership with about 20 cultural and academic partners in the region and through financial support from Wells Fargo Private Bank, the Leon Levine Foundation, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, the Blumenthal Foundation, the Arts & Science Council, Foundation for the Carolinas, the Jewish Federation of Greater Charlotte, US Airways, Lufthansa German Airlinesand other individual and community supporters. More information is on the Web at www.violinsofhopecharlotte.com. Watch “Violins of Hope” on YouTube.

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For more information, contact CTI Executive Director Scott Gartlan, 704-687-2026, info@charlotteteachers.org

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools Public Relations media contact: LaTarzja Henry, 980-344-0009, l.henry@cms.k12.nc.us

Davidson College Public Relations media contact: Stacey Schmeidel, 704-894-2798, stschmeidel@davidson.edu

UNC Charlotte Public Relations media contact: Buffie Stephens, 704-687-5830, BuffieStephens@uncc.edu