National Writing Project

Resource Topics

Professional Development - General Professional Development Resources

Featured Resources

NWP at Rutgers: What We've Learned About School Partnerships

January 2009
NWP at Rutgers director Kim Lanza shares some lessons learned at the site as it developed inservice partnerships. More ›

Writing Project Partners with Denver High School for Six Years and Counting

March 2009
Elizabeth Radin Simons
Just as they have for five years, Northglenn High School teachers left "The Reading/Writing Connection," offered by the Denver Writing Project, with a bounty of new ideas about how to use writing to stimulate learning in their classrooms. More ›

Literacy Coaches Explore Their Work Through Vignettes

June 2008
Carrie Usui
What is the work of a literacy coach? During a weekend retreat funded by an Urban Sites Network minigrant, twelve UCLA Writing Project teacher-consultants serving as literacy coaches explored this question. More ›

 

Additional Resources

NWP Radio Archive

2017
Did you miss an episode? Find it here in this archive of NWP Radio, a program provided by the National Writing Project as an education resource on a broad range of topics for educators in and out of school. More ›

California English: Teachers in Charge of Their Own Learning

April 2012
This issue of California English continues the conversation about professional development and California's Common Core standards in education. California Writing Project teacher-leaders discuss the effective techniques they've learned and used in their classrooms, and encourage others to follow suit. More ›

NWP and the Common Core Standards

October 2011
NWP is developing a variety of resources and online spaces to help educators provide the professional development necessary to implement the work of the Common Core State Standards Initiative. More ›

State and Regional Networks Gain Focus with Visioning Retreats

February 2011
Bruce Penniman
Determining what kinds of work NWP sites can do better together than separately is challenging. Many networks have used visioning retreats to discover focus areas and decide what kinds of activities add value to sites. More ›

Karen Hamlin: Evolution of a Teacher

June 2010
Karen Hamlin, co-director of the Oregon Writing Project at Willamette, has initiated a program for Willamette teachers that allows them to visit the Galapagos Islands to teach English and ecology and study Spanish. More ›

Using Discourse Analysis to Improve Classroom Interaction

March 2010
Listen to this interview with authors Lesley A. Rex and Laura Schiller of the Oakland (MI) Writing Project. They discuss the finer points of classroom interaction, including how to study it and how to use that knowledge to improve teaching and learning. More ›

California English Celebrates the California Writing Project

February 2010
The November 2009 issue of California English magazine paid tribute to the California Writing Project's 35th anniversary by showcasing the work of California Writing Project teachers—and the many ways they demonstrate that successful teachers are the best teachers of teachers. More ›

Book Review: Essential Readings on Comprehension

January 2010
Cathy Blanchfield
Cathy Blanchfield, a teacher with the San Joaquin Valley Writing Project, finds this collection of articles focused on teaching reading comprehension in the content areas particularly useful to workshop facilitators working with content area teachers. More ›

School Partnership Leads to “Exciting Writing Week” in Little Rock

July 2009
Elizabeth Radin Simons
A partnership between an Arkansas elementary school and the Little Rock Writing Project has greatly advanced the school's writing culture, especially through its annual Exciting Writing Week. More ›

The NWP Directors Retreat: Fox Valley Writing Project Finds Lessons That Keep On Giving

June 2009
Fox Valley Writing Project leaders share their thinking about the connections among leadership development, continuity, and site development—thinking that has grown from their experiences at the 2007 Directors Retreat. More ›

Directors Retreat Strategic Planning Tools

April 2009
Susan Connell Biggs, Nick Coles
These strategic planning tools—a strategic planning template, timeline, and collaborative review of action plans—will help site leaders generate collective vision and set priorities for future development. More ›

Responsible Citizenship in a Global Environment

April 2009
Jacqueline Jones Royster
In her keynote speech at the 2009 NWP Spring Meeting, Jacqueline Jones Royster, professor of English at The Ohio State University, discusses how teachers have the responsibility of being agents and enablers of both stability and change. More ›

Working Solo: The Experience of a Lone Teacher-Consultant

March 2008
Lyon Rathbun
Taking a writing project approach, a teacher introduces the magic of writing to teachers and students in a low-performing school in an economically depressed former mining town. More ›

Missouri Sites Implement Literacy Academies

July 2007
Michael Muenks, the Missouri Department of Education's director of assessment, needed a professional development program to help boost literacy in underperforming middle schools. He welcomed the three-year program developed by the Missouri Writing Projects Network. More ›

NWP Professional Writing Retreat Handbook

May 2007
Tom Fox, Kathleen O'Shaughnessy, Joe Check, Carol Tateishi
This Handbook offers advice about planning, funding, and conducting a retreat and provides tools and resources to help sites design local retreats. Learn more about NWP's Professional Writing Retreats. More ›

Confronting the Challenges of Participatory Culture: Media Education of the 21st Century

2006
Henry Jenkins
Educators today confront an ever-shifting landscape when it comes to Internet technologies and their potential for expanding participatory cultures. Henry Jenkins, director of the Comparative Media Studies department at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, explores new frameworks for literacy through the lens of participatory culture. More ›

Post-Tsunami Storytelling in Indonesia

The Voice, 2006
Katherine Schultz
Schultz was invited to Indonesia to mentor new teachers hired to replace those who perished in the tsunami-devastated province of Aceh. The Indonesian teachers left with new visions of child-centered teaching and learning. More ›

Writing to Learn for Preservice Teachers

The Quarterly, 2005
Samuel Totten
Why do few teachers incorporate writing-to-learn strategies into their classrooms? The answer, according to the author, is not very complicated: they have never been taught these strategies. More ›

Dear Jaynie: A Meditation on Theory and Grad Talk

The Quarterly, 2004
Britton Gildersleeve
Gildersleeve believes that teachers need theory. In this article, written as a letter to a first grade teacher, she tells why. More ›

It Takes a School

The Voice, 2004
Mary Ann Smith
Smith describes a tour of Meade Elementary School, where a five-year partnership with the Philadelphia Writing Project has built a professional community working toward school reform. More ›

The Maryland Writing Project Is in My Closet

The Voice, 2004
Sarah Abernethy Snyder
A teacher-consultant shares how she uses such props as Lego blocks, fancy paper, seashells, a magic wand, and a kaleidoscope. More ›

The Writing Project and Tulsa Schools Collaborate for School Reform That Works

The Voice, 2004
Eileen Simmons
Simmons reports on how writing project inservice can support local reform efforts by centering on pedagogy and designing a program around teacher questions and concerns. More ›

Teaching the Teacher: What I Learned from Teaching a Content Literacy Methods Class

The Quarterly, Spring 2003
Ingrid Spence
When junior high school teacher Spence was approached to teach a methods class at the local university, she was enthusiastic. She soon learned that this feeling was not shared by some of her students. More ›

Because Writing Matters: A Book That Shares What We Know

The Quarterly, Winter 2003
Art Peterson
This NWP book pulls together the concepts that have generated the successful practice of writing project teachers and makes the case for what needs to be done to advance the teaching of writing in schools. More ›

Inverness Report Surveys Benefits of Summer Institutes for Teachers and Students

The Voice, May-June 2002
Carl Nagin
A report from a survey of summer institute participants confirms that NWP institutes offer "valuable and influential professional development experience to teachers." More ›

Observations in the Classroom

The Quarterly, Spring 2002
Allen Wiseman, Randy Koch
Springboarding off the summer institute practice of teacher demonstrations, Koch and Wiseman enter into a classroom observation project that puts Wiseman in Koch's college English classroom. The success of their efforts far exceeded their expectations. More ›

Do NWP Teachers Make a Difference?

The Quarterly, Summer 2002
Jon Marshall, Ruie Pritchard
The authors unveil some unsettling circumstances about teacher disincentives to initiate change. They define some of the constraints on the impact teachers can have in this age of standards and accountability. More ›

On Being a Hedgehog

The Quarterly, Winter 2002
Kathleen O'Shaughnessy
When the zeal for accountability ends up being the zeal for paperwork, reports, and teaching to lists of check-boxes, teachers are forced to get creative—and sometimes to move on. More ›

Book Review: Updrafts: Case Studies in Teacher Renewal, edited by Roy F. Fox

The Quarterly, Fall 2001
Michele Pittard
Updrafts, according to Pittard, reaches beyond the audience of practicing teachers seeking their own renewal to appeal to administrators and teacher educators concerned with problems such as the attrition of beginning teachers. More ›

A Voice That Is Heard: Living the Writing Project Philosophy as Coaches

The Quarterly, Summer 2001
Sidnie Myrick
Myrick describes how the key to successful coaching is the belief that a coach is no more and no less than a partner in this process. More ›

Recruiting Tips for a New Site: A Year-One Story

The Voice, January-February 2000
Liz Stephens
Site Director Stephens describes her strategies for promoting the new Central Texas Writing Project and recruiting for the site's first invitational summer institute. More ›

CSA Offers Teachers Powerful Tools

The Voice, November-December 2000
Becky Young, Asali Solomon, Art Peterson
A description of the NWP-sponsored workshops designed to involve teachers in the work of the Centre for Social Action, which promotes a unique approach to working with those who use social services. More ›

English Journal Meets Darth Vader:
Teacher-Consultants Need Theory to Back Up Practice

The Voice, September-October 2000
Helen Collins Sitler
Helen Collins Sitler discusses why teacher-consultants need theory to back up their successful classroom practices. More ›

Project Outreach Transforms Professional Development
A Report from Johnston County

The Voice, September-October 2000
Sandra O'Berry, Patsy Butler
What was it like for a small, rural satellite site to join the Project Outreach Network? "Like building a plane as it taxied down the runway: risky, but we hoped it would fly." More ›

Imaginary Gardens and Real Issues: Improving Language Arts in the Urban Elementary School

The Quarterly, Winter 2000
Joe Check
Using the form of a hypothetical narrative, Check argues that improved literacy instruction is inextricably linked to improved schools, and that the NWP is an ideal vehicle for helping urban schools build needed exemplary contexts. More ›

NBPTS: Six Stages of Certification

The Voice, November-December 1999
Nancy J. Larsen
More ›

Rediscovering the Passion to Teach

The Voice, November-December 1999
Diane Scollay
Scollay reflects on how the success of her summer institute demonstration propelled her from a teacher "considering another job" to one who has taught more than 1,000 teachers about the writing process. More ›

Tulsa Writing Camp

The Voice, November-December 1999
Eileen Simmons
Simmons describes how the Oklahoma State University Writing project developed a summer writing camp at two elementary schools, in which the schools' teachers serve as faculty after two weeks of professional development work with OSUWP teachers. More ›

The Truth About Lightning Bugs: What Our Children Know

The Quarterly, Spring 1999
Kim Patterson
Patterson argues that students from rural and economically deprived backgrounds come to school with valuable experience to share. The teacher's job is to find ways to use this knowledge and experience. More ›

My Beliefs About Teaching Before the National Writing Project (and How They Have Changed)

The Voice, Summer 1998
Susan Bennett
Bennett discusses how her involvement with the writing project has changed her views about her profession, about teacher community and collegiality, about reflective practice, and about university-based learning. More ›

Honing

The Quarterly, Spring/Summer 1994
Don Gallehr
Gallehr compares the honing of a blade to the sharpening that the NWP provides for the mind, explaining why the writing project has been so successful in improving education throughout the nation. More ›

Assessment of the Chicago Area Writing Project

The Quarterly, February 1981
Anne Mickles, Betty Jane Wagner, Steve Zemelman
In 1981, using the primary scoring system developed by NAEP, the authors analyze writing samples from CAWP teachers to document the efficacy of NWP techniques and strategies. More ›

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