LLA Literacies for All Summer Institute - NCTE



Dr. April Baker-Bell  is an award-winning transdisciplinary teacher-researcher-activist and associate professor of language, literacy, and English education in the Department of English and Department of African American and African Studies at Michigan State University. Baker-Bell is an international leader in conversations on Black Language education, and her research interrogates the intersections of Black Language and literacies, anti-Black racism, and antiracist pedagogies. Her award-winning book, Linguistic Justice: Black Language, Literacy, Identity, and Pedagogy, brings together theory, research, and practice to dismantle Anti-Black Linguistic Racism (a term Baker-Bell coined) and white linguistic supremacy. Baker-Bell is the recipient of many awards and fellowships, including the 2021 Andrew W. Mellon Foundation’s New Directions Fellowship, the 2021 Michigan State University’s Community Engagement Scholarship Award and the 2021 Distinguished Partnership Award for Community-Engaged Creative Activity, the 2020 NCTE George Orwell Award for Distinguished Contribution to Honesty and Clarity in Public Language, the 2019 Michigan State University Alumni Award for Innovation & Leadership in Teaching and Learning, and the 2018 AERA Language and Social Processes Early Career Scholar Award.



Dr. Gloria Swindler Boutte is a Carolina Distinguished Professor at the University of South Carolina. Her scholarship focuses on equity pedagogies. She is the author/editor of five books: (1) We Be Lovin’ Black Children: Learning to Be Literate about the African Diaspora; (2) African Diaspora Literacy: The Heart of Transformation in K-12 Schools and Teacher Education (2019 AESA Critics’ Choice Award); (3) Educating African American Students: And How Are the Children?; (4) Resounding Voices: School Experiences of People from Diverse Ethnic Backgrounds; and (5) Multicultural Education: Raising Consciousness. She has nearly 100 publications. Boutte has presented nationally and internationally on equity issues and has received prestigious awards such as the Fulbright Scholar; Fulbright Specialist; 2020 National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) Outstanding Educator in the English Language Arts—Elementary Section; and the 2021 American Educational Research Association (AERA) 2021 Division K Legacy award. She is the founder and executive director of the Center for the Education and Equity of African American Students (CEEAAS).



Conference Details

Join LLA for the 2021 Virtual Summer Institute, Saturday, July 10. We are excited to announce our keynotes for this year’s event: Dr. April Baker-Bell and Dr. Gloria Swindler Boutte!

Our theme for the conference will reflect the possibilities or ways educational spaces have been reimagined during the pandemic. Our organization’s ongoing rejuvenation serves as an invitation for educators who believe that ALL children deserve personally meaningful learning contexts, that children (not programs) are the primary informants of literacy curriculum, and that teachers are experts in their classrooms to become active in the organization by sharing their visions and voices about the future of holistic literacy education.

Each of these ideas has particular relevance to the past and future of our organization and to the current state of literacy education.

  • Personally meaningful learning contexts are ones in which children’s languages and cultures are valued and recognized as assets for learning and where educators engage children in using multiple literacies to explore issues of equity in their local and global communities.
  • Curriculum is developed alongside children as they engage in authentic literacy events, and kidwatching is the foundation of this process. Instructional practices are selected with intention and implemented to support children’s developing language and literacy skills and literate identities.
  • Teachers as experts explore current research, cultivate an inquiry stance, and engage in collaborative action research as a continuous cycle of professional growth.

The Summer Institute affords educators the opportunity to come together to learn and explore these beliefs through a variety of forums including individual presentations, workshops, symposia, panels, conversations, and poster sessions. We invite proposals that focus on the following:

  • Collaborations between learners, teachers, parents, and community members, including community study, service learning, critical pedagogy, and social action
  • Collaborative projects that cross boundaries within and across communities, states, and countries
  • The use of technology, digital, visual, and critical literacies to bring us together across time and space, and across political, social, economic, and geographic boundaries
  • How literacy and access to it positions us socially, economically, and politically
  • What it means to be literate in varied languages and cultures
  • How the meaning of literacy has changed and continues to evolve
  • Including and nurturing diverse languages and literacies in bilingual, multilingual, and monolingual English settings
  • Reading literature that reflects the lives of our students and broadens our scope to lived experiences other than our own
  • How meaningful teaching and authentic learning engagements support individuals’ social and emotional well-being

In addition to other sessions, the NCTE Early Childhood Education Assembly sponsors an early childhood strand pertaining to the education of children from birth to age eight, their families, and teachers. Early literacy sessions also address diversities in early childhood and highlight practices and processes that are situated in social, historical, and cultural contexts.

Program and session details will be posted soon.

Institute Policies 




LLA 2021 will be a one-day virtual event held on Saturday, July 10.  Registration is now open!


  • LLA member: $75
  • NCTE member: $100
  • NCTE nonmember: $150
  • student: $75
  • student nonmember: $75



Summer Institute Program (pdf)



Information for Attendees

See the FAQ, Accessibility Guide, and Tutorial below for tips for participating in the 2021 Literacies and Languages for All Summer Institute.

LLA 2021 FAQ

LLA 2021 Virtual Platform Accessibility Guide

LLA 2021 Virtual Platform Tutorial Guide


Information for Presenters

In addition to registering for the Summer Institute, presenters will want to read the “Information, Recommendations, and FAQ” and “Presentation Accessibility Requirements” documents and will need to sign the “Speaker Agreement.” These documents are linked below. A “Student Consent Form” is also included below in case a session includes students.

LLA 2021 Presenter Information, Recommendations, and FAQ

LLA 2021 Speaker Agreement

LLA 2021 Presentation Accessibility Requirements

LLA 2021 Student Consent Form


Questions? Email us at NCTEevents@ncte.org.


Important Dates & Links

  • Webcast Auditorium Orientation (access recording here)
  • July 2: deadline for presenters to return signed speaker agreements (email: NCTEevents@ncte.org)
  • July 2: deadline for presenters to upload files for Prerecorded/Scheduled and On-Demand sessions
  • August 9: presentation archive closes at 11:59 p.m. ET


Plans for the 2022 Summer Institute

The 2022 LLA Summer Institute is currently planned to be in person. The location will be Normal, Illinois, and will include a Preconference Workshop, a five-hour, cosponsored, intensive workshop taking place the afternoon before the opening session of the Summer Institute and focusing on the complex political and critical issues that surround whole language philosophy and teaching. With goals of teacher support and professional development, advocacy, and political action, participants actively engage in dialogue and small- and whole-group interactions. A separate Preconference Proposal form should be submitted by the dates indicated on the proposal form.

The Literacies for All Summer Institute is a peer-reviewed conference. All proposals addressing whole language beliefs will be considered. Look for more information about the conference on this website, on the Facebook page, and follow us on Twitter.

Important Notes: Because LLA is a not-for-profit organization, the financial viability of its Summer Institute depends upon the support of everyone who attends. Invited participants are required to register for the conference when they accept their invitation. NCTE/LLA is unable to reimburse program participants for travel or living expenses. Session proposers should advise all involved in their proposal that submission of a proposal does not constitute an invitation to appear on the program. Invitations will be sent next spring following the Program Planning Committee’s peer-review and selection process.

LLA Scholarship Fund

LLA Scholarships assist teachers who embrace whole language practices in their classrooms. Scholarships are available each year for teachers to attend the Literacies for All Summer Institute. The scholarship supports registration costs and one year of LLA/NCTE membership. Each award is valued to be no more than $300. Scholarship application deadline: May 20, 2021

Scholarship Application


Special thanks to the sponsors who help to make the Literacies for All Summer Institute possible.


Center for Expansion of Language and Thinking (CELT)

Early Childhood Education Assembly (ECEA)

Past LLA Literacies for All Summer Institutes


2019 Literacies for All Summer Institute
July 10-12, 2019, Columbia, South Carolina
Embracing Diversity through Meaningful Inquiry

2018 Literacies for All Summer Institute
July 12-14, 2018, Baltimore, Maryland
Sustaining Joy in Our Learning Communities during Challenging Times

2017 Literacies for All Summer Institute
July 20-22, 2017, Tucson Arizona
Global Literacies, Global Conversations: Celebrating Our Connections

2016 Literacies for All Summer Institute
July 14-16, 2016, St. Louis, Missouri
Literacy That Matters: Curriculum, Creativity, and Critical Action

2015 Literacies for All Summer Institute
July 9-11, 2015, Atlanta, Georgia
Sharing Our Stories: Re-visioning Our Worlds: Reading, Writing, and Taking Action

2014 Literacies for All Summer Institute
July 17-19, 2014, Pasadena, California
Making Meaning: Teaching and Learning Together

2013 Literacies for All Summer Institute
July 18-20, 2013, Hofstra University, Hempstead, New York
Authentic Literacy Events and Social Actions: Celebrating Relationships and Partnerships

2012 Literacies for All Summer Institute
July 19-21, 2012, St. Louis, Missouri
Reclaiming Joy in Teaching, Learning, and Research

2011 Literacies for All Summer Institute
July 21-24, 2011, Las Vegas, Nevada
Teachers, Students, and Families Together: Nurturing Literate Communities

2010 Literacies for All Summer Institute
July 8-11, 2010, Indianapolis, Indiana
Reflecting on Our Practice: Pathways and Possibilities

2009 Literacies for All Summer Institute
July 9-12, 2009, Columbia, South Carolina
Learning in the Company of Others: Reading, Writing, and Inquiring in the 21st Century