Sharpen Your Saw with IEW Events and Resources

May 02, 2024 | Posted by the IEW Blog Team

“Renewal is the principle – and the process – that empowers us to move on an upward spiral of growth and change, of continuous improvement” (Stephen R. Covey). In this quote, fans of 7 Habits of Highly Effective People may recognize an illustration of Habit #7 – Sharpen the Saw®. For teachers, the summer break is an opportunity to sharpen our saws. Using this time to relax, read, or take a class, we are able to reflect on the previous year and consider ways to nourish and enhance our teaching skills. The KIPP Foundation Public Charter Schools Framework for Excellent Teaching calls for teachers to take advantage of learning opportunities both in and out of school. The framework describes an excellent teacher as one who “doesn’t settle or sit, but grows.”  

IEW is committed to helping teachers sharpen their saws by offering events and resources designed to improve their mastery of the Structure and Style® writing method. As has been our tradition for the past several years, this summer there are two training opportunities—the live Virtual Teaching Writing: Structure and Style workshop and The Great TWSS Adventure. Both events include a focus on encouraging and supporting participants to complete the TWSS practicum assignments and become an IEW® Accredited Instructor

The virtual workshop, which takes place over three consecutive Tuesdays on June 11, 18, and 25, features live, interactive instruction of Teaching Writing: Structure and Style, led by IEW Founder and Director Andrew Pudewa and IEW Implementation Coach Jeff Nease. This workshop is designed with teachers in mind, combining live-streamed sessions with independent assignments as participants watch portions of the video seminar and finish the practicum exercises between sessions. During the presentation, participants can ask questions using the chat feature, and IEW Educational Consultants will answer in real time. Participants will receive a certificate following the seminar and can earn Continuing Education Units (CEUs). For more information or to register for this seminar, visit the Virtual Teaching Writing: Structure and Style page on the website. 

The Great TWSS Adventure offers a community of participants from all over the globe an opportunity to complete the Teaching Writing: Structure and Style seminar following a schedule of one unit per week over nine weeks. Each week, Andrew Pudewa and Evan Smith will introduce that week’s unit and explain the related practicum assignment. Jeff Nease will fill in when Andrew is traveling for a speaking engagement. During the week, participants will watch the video segment for that unit and complete the practicum assignment. If questions arise between sessions, participants can email those questions to IEW for a response.

Andrew and Evan will begin The Great TWSS Adventure on Wednesday, June 5, at 1:00 PM CT on IEW's YouTube channel. This year the live Q & A has been expanded from thirty minutes to an hour. This will also allow time for a new feature – the presenters will share examples of students’ assignments for each unit at all three levels of Structure and Style for Students. As in past years, viewers will have an opportunity to ask questions about the previous week’s assignment or the current unit in the chat during the live show.

There is no cost to join The Great TWSS Adventure, but participants will need a copy of the Seminar Workbook and access to the Teaching Writing: Structure and Style (TWSS) video seminar. If you have purchased the full TWSS or if you have an active Premium Membership and a Seminar Workbook, you are all set. If your Premium Membership has expired and you need to renew it, contact the Schools Division ( or customer service ( for assistance. Be sure to sign up to receive weekly email reminders for The Great TWSS Adventure 2024!

In addition to our flagship teacher training course, IEW is known for the variety of saw-sharpening resources available on our IEW Resources page. Here is a sampling of blogs, podcasts, articles, and talks to help you hone your teaching skills this summer.

The Value of the Practicum Exercises in the Structure and Style Seminar
Premium Membership
An Exciting Addition to Premium Membership: TTAP
IEW Accreditation: The Secret Key to Success

Sharpening the Saw – Maintaining Your Edge as a Teacher (Episode 324)
How to Teach Writing with Confidence (Episode 339)
Summer Writing Ideas (Episode 373)
Homeschooling 101 – How to Prepare for the Fall (Episode 375)

However Imperfectly: Lessons Learned from Thirty Years of Teaching
Low-Tech Teaching with High-End Results  
What is IEW? Method not Madness
The Art of Teaching a Skill, or The Skill of Teaching an Art

Four Deadly Errors of Teaching Writing
Reaching the Reluctant Writer
Cultivating Language Arts – Preschool through High School

We hope this summer provides a little time to relax as you reflect on the past year and ponder the year ahead. As you consider ways to sharpen your saw, IEW’s summer events and resources will encourage you to grow and improve as a teacher. We’re here to support you as you do! 


by Jean Nichols

Sharpen the Saw® is a registered trademark of Franklin Covey Co. which does not sponsor, authorize, or endorse this article.

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