For over 20 years, our Lutheran schools have offered a weeklong professional-development experience designed to promote critical-thinking skills, and we've called it IMPACT (Involving Minds in Problem Analysis and Critical Thinking). There are two definitions of the word "impact." The first is to have a strong effect on someone. That's a good descriptor of what we want to accomplish. But I almost like the second definition of "impact" better: to come into forcible contact with another object. We certainly don't want our teachers to feel as if a Mack truck has hit them after a week with us! But we do want them to feel changed or altered in some way. IMPACT 2014 is set for June 16-20, and for the first time in recent years, teachers from our own schools will be co-facilitating! TLSP, in partnership with the schools mentioned below, is gearing up to offer a variety of "impactful" experiences this summer, including:Creating PBL Units: Project-based learning asks students to solve real-world problems or create projects that are meaningful and engaging. Our teachers will spend two days at Emmaus Lutheran School, learning about how they can incorporate PBL units into their curricula.Integrating Tech Tools: Technology must become a fundamental element in our classrooms. Wyneken Lutheran School has embraced this new reality and empowers its teachers to experiment and grow in this area. Our teachers will learn from them and share their own experiences as we prepare students for the 21st century.Reading and Writing Best Practice: Teaching is truly an art and a science. We'll learn about both as we gather together to share our own successes with a new reading curriculum. We're also excited to send our teachers to the All Write Conference, where they'll hear from some of the best teachers in the nation.MS Science Symposium: Middle school teachers-God bless them! The science department at Concordia Lutheran High School is creating a day of learning and experimenting that will support our middle school teachers in a new and exciting way.God has graced us with talented and dedicated teachers, and I can't wait to see them all in June.