National Writing Project

NWP Plunges Teachers Into Specific Expertise With a Thorough Immersion in Writing

By: Mary Ann Smith
Publication: Journal of Staff Development
Date: Summer 2006

Summary: This article from the Journal of Staff Development offers a look at the NWP model in action, reviews recent research findings, and gives recommendations for supporting teachers in their work of teaching students.

 

Excerpt

In other professions, to present a "case" before colleagues is not uncommon. But in teaching, to make public a slice of classroom practice is rare.

The institute prepares teachers to articulate and interrogate their practice in a way that benefits a room full of colleagues. Devlin's reaction to the institute demonstrations is typical: "We found out that our knowledge mattered. I had never before thought that what I knew counted for something. The demonstrations also made me look more closely at everything in my classroom, beginning with my students." At the institute, Devlin also explored theory and research in small groups with her colleagues.

"As professionals, teachers need to immerse themselves in the why as well as the what of their work," noted NWP founder James Gray.

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