Online this Summer: The IWT Off-Road Writing Workshop

Online this Summer: The IWT Off-Road Writing Workshop
HOSTED BY: New Roads High School, Santa Monica, CA

WHO CAN APPLY: High school students who have completed 9th, 10th, or 11th grades. 

DEADLINE: July 23, 2021

August 2–6, 2021

9:00 a.m.–2:00 p.m. Pacific Standard Time

Online This Summer: The IWT Off-Road Writing Workshop

New Roads High School, Santa Monica, California

New Roads High School and Bard College Institute for Writing and Thinking (IWT) are pleased to introduce the IWT Off-Road Writing Workshop at New Roads High School.  Modeled on Bard College’s Language & Thinking Program, established in 1982, this weeklong writing workshop cultivates fluency of expression in writing and speaking that is so necessary for college or university.  The workshop will be held online and hosted by New Roads High School in Santa Monica, CA, an institution known for its progressive and diverse curriculum. In small groups of 12 to 15, students will work together in two-hour morning and afternoon sessions from Monday to Friday, August 2–6, 2021. Workshops will run in Pacific Daylight Time.
In this weeklong workshop, you will explore contemporary and classic texts from literature, philosophy, the social sciences, and the visual and performing arts, and write and reflect about them in serious, speculative, and playful ways. The work you do here will help you become a more nuanced and mindful reader and an inventive, expansive writer. As you read and write alongside other curious-minded people, you will learn new methods for engaging interdisciplinary texts and innovative strategies that will stretch your intellectual and creative abilities. Most importantly, you will work together to question both the texts and your own assumptions.  Group projects can include short films, readings, and digital media zines. Texts will include such authors as: Anna Akhmatova, James Baldwin, Anne Carson, Teju Cole, Mahmoud Darwish, Natalie Diaz, Franz Kafka, Immanuel Kant, Robin Wall Kimmerer, Primo Levi, Audre Lorde, Michel de Montaigne, Sarah Ruhl, Edward Said, Carmen Giménez Smith, and Wallace Stevens.
You will write individually and in collaboration with others, and become aware of the choices you make in your own writing—from word choices in the expression of ideas to the opportunities offered by different forms. You will deepen your own learning in a community that values educational depth more than simply having the right answer. Working on a variety of projects in writing and other formats, workshops meet in the morning and afternoon in small classes and in one-on-one conferences with faculty.
Over the course of the week, you will build from informal “risky” writing to more finished pieces for a portfolio of interdisciplinary—and multidisciplinary—work. 

DATES: Aug. 2–6, 2021.  Monday–Friday.  9am–2pm Pacific Daylight Time. This time includes lunch and Zoom breaks.  
WHO CAN APPLY: High school students who have completed 9th, 10th, or 11th grades. 
DEADLINES: Students can submit applications until July 23, 2021.
RATES:  $675 for the week; $607.50 Early Bird rate (early bird deadline July 2).  Partial financial aid is available.  To apply for financial aid, please contact Molly Livingston, Program Administrator at
FACULTY: Bard IWT instructors hold advanced degrees in their fields and extensive training in Bard’s innovative approach to interdisciplinary inquiry.   

DAILY SCHEDULE (Pacific Daylight Time):
9:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. - Workshop Session 1 (with 15-minute midmorning break)
11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. - Lunch 
12:00 p.m. - 2:00 p.m. - Workshop Session 2​ (with 15-minute midafternoon break)
More Workshops for Students

More Workshops for Students

With generous support from the Bingham Trust, the Bard Institute for Writing and Thinking established the National Writing and Thinking Network in 1986 to provide imaginative, stimulating, and enjoyable summer writing programs for high school students. The Network’s summer workshops are modeled on the innovative three-week Language and Thinking Program that Bard College requires of all entering students. Offered at college-based sites in June and July, the summer workshops are intended for intellectually curious, motivated high school students in grades 9–12 who like to write and want to develop greater fluency and confidence in their writing. These two- and three-week workshops offer students the opportunity to work in a range of fiction and nonfiction forms, including poems, narratives, and essays, and to strengthen their writing and thinking skills. For more information, contact the workshop sites directly.

Lake Forest College Writing and Thinking Workshop

Lake Forest, Illinois
June 13 - 26, 2021

Tracy McCabe, Program Director

Bard College at Simon's Rock Young Writers Workshop

Great Barrington, Massachusetts
July 11 - 31, 2021

Jamie Hutchinson, Program Director

Students Speak

High School Students on Bard IWT Workshops

“I feel like I gained so much experience as a reader, writer and thinker.  Reading Kafka was pretty hard for me but now I feel ready to read and discuss new texts.”

“I feel the same way an old hinge feels after being oiled.”  

“[The workshop] stimulated the imagination and the organization of the thinking process.”  

“Being asked to write about myself, my opinions and my perception of things made me discover many things about myself and even surprised me.  Sometimes I would get new ideas and inspiration just through the process of writing – I eliminated the distance between my thoughts and a piece of paper.  For me, the most important part was to read texts of great writers and to analyze them with only myself and no judgment of others on my views and interpretations.”  

 “...the whole process of writing and the freedom of expression…was so stimulating [that] although I didn’t think I would enjoy these workshops, I finally loved…every moment.”