National Writing Project

Thursday Sessions Round B: Messing Around and Geeking Out

This round of afternoon breakout sessions provides opportunities for conversations about teaching and learning and being an NWP site.


Round B: 1:30 p.m.–3:00 p.m.

B1: Educator Innovator and You

1:30pm - 3:00pm Gaylord, Hotel Ballroom Level, Annapolis 1

Educator Innovator, powered by the National Writing Project, is partnering with LRNG to offer a challenge that funds creative solutions to the issues presented by time and space when teachers implement interest-driven, production-centered work for their students. Learn more about these and other opportunities available at Educator Innovator and find out how you and your Writing Project site can engage with this exciting initiative.

Paul Oh, National Writing Project

B2: A Conversation About the National Writing Project

1:30pm - 3:00pm Gaylord, Hotel Ballroom Level, Annapolis 2

Join Executive Director Elyse Eidman-Aadahl for an informal discussion about the National Writing Project. This session will include opportunities to discuss new activities and directions, and share ideas about the future.

Elyse Eidman-Aadahl, National Writing Project

B3: Hacktivist Media Projects: (Re)Mixing and (Re)Imagining Writing and Science Learning

1:30pm - 3:00pm Gaylord, Hotel Ballroom Level, Annapolis 3

This panel (re)mixes and (re)imagines work by our Writing Project sites partnering with science museums through projects that invite underrepresented students to “make steam” and “make science” through hacktivist media-making projects. Makers do things with science, technology, engineering, art, and mathematics (STEAM) to figure out how things work and “make” things for their own purposes. Making brings science learning and literacy together by following the recursive processes of writing: launching an idea, composing, reflecting, sharing, and looping back and around. Come “make” with us and learn how to build relationships with informal science educators who value iterative learning and deep play.

William Banks, Tar River Writing Project
Lil Brannon, UNC Charlotte Writing Project
Steve Fulton, UNC Charlotte Writing Project
Danielle Lewis Ange, Tar River Writing Project
Lacy Manship, UNC Charlotte Writing Project
Cindy Urbanski, UNC Charlotte Writing Project
Stephanie West-Puckett, Tar River Writing Project

B4: The Life of a Piece of Writing

1:30pm - 3:00pm Gaylord, Hotel Ballroom Level, Annapolis 4

What if you kept track of everything that you and your students did during an extended unit and organized it on an easily accessible webpage? It has now been done. Join us for an exploratory session of Inside the Life of a Piece of Writing , a valuable resource examining how we represent our work and the work of our students.

Rachel Bear, Boise State University Writing Project
Casey Olsen, Elk River Writing Project

B5: Routines of Writing: New Practices that Promote Fluency for Citizenship and College and Career

1:30pm - 3:00pm Gaylord, Hotel Ballroom Level, Fort Washington Boardroom

Experience how to infuse critical reading and writing into daily routines of writing. We will explore how to build fluency with challenging and engaging reading and writing practices. These practices can be used in the classroom or in professional development programs.

Linda Denstaedt, Oakland Writing Project
Debbie Jones, Wiregrass Writing Project

B6: Building Site Capacity and Learning Together Through Leadership Institutes and Opportunities

1:30pm - 3:00pm Gaylord, Hotel Ballroom Level, Wilson B

From providing professional development in schools to making connections to school and community partners, from advocacy to fundraising, teacher leadership is at the heart of Writing Project work. Join NWP colleagues for roundtable discussions exploring the variety of ways that sites have developed to support teacher-consultants in learning together to develop expertise and lead the work of Writing Project sites. Through lively conversations, participants will learn and share ideas for advanced institute designs, diversifying and expanding site leadership, and more.

Patricia Ball, National Writing Project at Carroll University
Stephanie Bell, Penn State Lehigh Valley Writing Project
Mary Bellavance, Southern Maine Writing Project
Heather Casey, National Writing Project at Rider University
Nancy Coco, Penn State Lehigh Valley Writing Project
Tim Hebda, Southern Maine Writing Project
Jeremy Hyler, Chippewa River Writing Project
Darshna Katwala, Long Island Writing Project
Richard Louth, Southeastern Louisiana Writing Project
Jonathan Lovell, San Jose Area Writing Project
Aimee Marsland, Rhode Island Writing Project
Ken Martin, University of Maine Writing Project
Deborah Meister, Chippewa River Writing Project
Janet Neyer, Chippewa River Writing Project
Laurell Parris, National Writing Project at Rider University
Donna Pasternak, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Writing Project
Leslie Patterson, North Star of Texas Writing Project
Elise Riepenhoff, National Writing Project at Carroll University
Karen Rigoni, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Writing Project
Alexa Sandmann, National Writing Project at Kent State University
Lucy Spence, Santee-Wateree Writing Project
Susan Vander Does, Rhode Island Writing Project
Kate Walley, National Writing Project at Kent State University
Carol Wickstrom, North Star of Texas Writing Project

B7: Business Planning for Program Development and Site Sustainability

1:30pm - 3:00pm Gaylord, Hotel Ballroom Level, Wilson C

Join us for a hands-on exploration of Business Planning for Program Development , a dynamic new resource that offers a guided inquiry for NWP site leaders interested in starting a new or revitalizing an existing site program. Site leaders that have used the resource in strategic planning to develop revenue-generating programs will share their experiences.

Mary Buckelew, Pennsylvania Writing and Literature Project
Pat Fox, National Writing Project
Karen Hamlin, Oregon WP Collaborative at George Fox
Ann Mascherino, Pennsylvania Writing and Literature Project
Susanna Thornhill, Oregon WP Collaborative at George Fox

B8: What NWP Sites Are Learning About Successful, Long-Term Professional Development

1:30pm - 3:00pm Gaylord, Hotel Ballroom Level, Wilson D

Writing Project sites across the country are developing expertise and building capacity in response to the increasing demand for professional development that addresses the Common Core and College- and Career-Ready Standards, as well as the needs of English Language Learners. Join NWP colleagues to explore effective practices, program models, and lessons learned from intensive work with high-need schools, along with how professional development partnerships are contributing to sustaining sites and strengthening site leadership.

Kathy Bass, San Antonio Writing Project
Susanna Benko, Indiana Writing Project
Megan Birch, National Writing Project in New Hampshire
Sean Connors, Northwest Arkansas Writing Project
Susan Coti, District of Columbia Area Writing Project
Jason Courtmanche, Connecticut Writing Project - Storrs
Cynthia Crenshaw, Red Mountain Writing Project
Lynne Dorfman, Pennsylvania Writing and Literature Project
Diane Dougherty, Pennsylvania Writing and Literature Project
Natasha Flowers, Red Mountain Writing Project
Mindy Gumpert, Tidewater Writing Project
Debra Gurvitz, Illinois Writing Project
Anne Hartline, Redwood Writing Project
Roxanne Henkin, San Antonio Writing Project
Nikki Holland, Northwest Arkansas Writing Project
Lennie Irvin, San Antonio Writing Project
Kellee Jenkins, District of Columbia Area Writing Project
Douglas Kaufman, Connecticut Writing Project - Storrs
Barbara Miller, Indiana Writing Project
Victoria Oglan, Midlands Writing Project
Barbara O`Byrne, Central West Virginia Writing Project
Meg Petersen, National Writing Project in New Hampshire
Pam Piedfort, San Antonio Writing Project
Debbie Price, Tidewater Writing Project
Gwyndolyn Savens, Gateway Writing Project
Nancy Singer, Gateway Writing Project
Katy Smith, Illinois Writing Project
Mary Styslinger, Midlands Writing Project

B9: WriteLab: Exploring Opportunities for Online Responses

1:30pm - 3:00pm Gaylord, Hotel Ballroom Level, Magnolia 3

We believe that writing software can do far more than simply catch grammatical errors. We invite you to join us in exploring a new software-based tool, WriteLab, that supports student writers with detailed and encouraging responses to their drafts and offers detailed suggestions for improvement. WriteLab draws on computer science and natural language processing to make visible patterns and choices in language usage. It reads each draft for such features as clarity, cohesion, conciseness, and logic as well as highlights the benefits and ease of working on multiple drafts before the writer determines that a draft is “ready to be read.” The tool is currently being beta-tested, and we are especially interested in your questions and comments after you explore the software and view examples of student work. Visit for more information.

Donald McQuade, University of California
Matthew Ramirez, WriteLab
Richard Sterling, Executive Director Emeritus, National Writing Project

B10: Teaching Young Men of Color: A Conversation

1:30pm - 3:00pm Gaylord, Hotel Ballroom Level, Magnolia 2

Including young men of color in productive learning communities, a challenge highlighted in the recent Teacher Voices report, "Teaching Young Men of Color," will be the focus of this session. Participants will discuss gender issues reflected in boys' test scores and dropout rates, talk about effective classroom practices and strategies, and consider the notion, "it is not enough to just push students to do more; as educators we, too, must consistently push ourselves to do more for our students.”

Ben Bates, Oklahoma State University Writing Project
Janelle Bence, North Star of Texas Writing Project
Samuel Reed, Philadelphia Writing Project
Bryan Ripley Crandall, Connecticut Writing Project - Fairfield

B11: The Role of Inquiry in Teaching About the Holocaust and Genocide

1:30pm - 3:00pm Gaylord, Hotel Ballroom Level, Magnolia 1

In this panel, teacher-consultants who have attended the Memorial Library Summer Seminar on Holocaust Education will explore the ways in which writing and inquiry deepen student response to learning about the Holocaust and other genocides. We will look at the "messy" undertaking of multimodal composing and how it increases student engagement as the work of survivors, artists, and authors, in various formats, is translated into their compositions, and consider how newly available primary source documents generate fresh opportunities for learning through parallel accounts of specific dimensions of Holocaust and genocide experience. Throughout, we will foreground the importance of moving students toward action in response to stories of suffering. The session is intended for site directors, teachers interested in Holocaust education, and those interested in applying for the 2015 Memorial Library's summer seminar in New York City.

Susan Fletcher, Ohio University Appalachian Writing Project
Jennifer Lemberg, New York City Writing Project
Sondra Perl, New York City Writing Project
Diana Wagner, Eastern Shore Writing Project

B12: Playing with Open Designs for Professional Learning

1:30pm - 3:00pm Gaylord, Hotel Ballroom Level, Azalea 1

Over the past two summers, Writing Project colleagues have been connecting with other educators around the world in a massive open online collaboration known as Making Learning Connected, or more commonly, CLMOOC. As designers, facilitators, and participants of CLMOOC, we can think of it as a giant online professional learning “sandbox” where we prototype and collaboratively design ways to connect learning for ourselves, as adults, and the youth with whom we work. Come join us to explore the open designs of CLMOOC and think about the implications for this kind of production-centered, interest-driven, and peer-supported connected learning and teaching in your own context.

Joe Dillon, Denver Writing Project
Karen Fasimpaur, Borderlands Writing Project
Kevin Hodgson, Western Massachusetts Writing Project
Anna Smith, Illinois State University
Mia Zamora, Kean University National Writing Project

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