National Writing Project

Teachers of the 2008 NWP Annual Report: Renee Webster

Publication: 2008 NWP Annual Report

Summary: Meet Renee Webster, Perry Elementary School, Perry, Michigan; co-director of the Red Cedar Writing Project.


"Digital recorders capture the smart thinking of first-graders," says Renee Webster.

Renee, a 34-year veteran teacher, wants to preserve that smart thinking. "We can replay it and show our young students in what ways they were so smart." As a result, all children become more intentional about language, and special-needs students can participate more fully.

In Renee's class, students record their book talks and their best ideas. This year they have created a documentary for graduating kindergartners. Based on their experiences and interviews with other first-graders, their documentary delivers essential tips for making the leap to first grade.

"I like using the digital voice recorder because I can listen to the podcast on the Internet," says Ryan, first grade student. "It explodes your audience. And it records everything."

Writing by Renee Webster

Other 2008 NWP Annual Report Profiles

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