Advocacy Toolkit for NWP Sites

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Summary: The NWP Advocacy Toolkit was developed to help NWP site leaders gain local, state, and national support for their sites, and to provide information about the federal legislative process. This toolkit is a valuable resource for sites in their ongoing efforts to educate policymakers about the importance of writing and of the writing project.

The toolkit offers tips for making appointments with legislators, writing letters and emails, and building relationships. It also provides background information about the legislative process, a listing of relevant Congressional committees, a glossary of legislative terms, and tips on using the media to promote local site efforts.

Seattle Test Boycott: Our Destination Is Not on the MAP

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Author: Jesse Hagopian

Summary: Jesse Hagopian—a high school history teacher in Seattle and founding member of Social Equality Educators—participated in the boycott against Seattle Public School’s mandated Measures of Academic Progress (MAP), along with numerous other teachers in the area. He shares how the boycott was organized and what lessons it holds for those who want to “liberate education from the standardized testing regime.”

Teacher as Community Member/Teacher as Connector

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Author: Danielle Filipiak

Summary: This multi-generational dialogue explores the ways in which teachers can strengthen their classrooms’ connection to communities, neighborhoods, and other contexts that their students navigate.

NWP Social Practices Part 1 of 6: Advocacy (NWP Radio)

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Summary: This NWP Radio episode, the first in a six part series examining a set of social practices embedded in NWP-style teacher leadership, examines three case studies of what teacher leadership through advocacy can look like, and how teachers can take up the practice of advocacy more generally.

The Harry Potter Alliance: Connecting Fan Interests and Civic Action

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Author: Connected Learning Alliance

Summary: This connected learning case study spotlights The Harry Potter Alliance, examining how utilizing the principles of Connected Learning allows the organization to engage a fan community in a variety of real-world civic action. It could be useful as part of an introduction to Connected Learning for teachers new to the theory, or as an advocacy tool for teachers working to create more space for connected learning.

Resources to Help You Plan Civic Literacy Projects

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Author: Nicole Mirra

Summary: Nicole Mirra shares resources she has created while developing Common Core-aligned civic literacy units, combining civic inquiry and academic literacy instruction.

Finding Support for Teaching Civic Literacy Skills in the Common Core Standards

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Author: Nicole Mirra

Summary: Rather than viewing civic education as a particular body of knowledge, belonging in social studies class, Mirra argues that civic literacy is a set of skills that can be incorporated throughout the curriculum, reinforcing Common Core standards along the way.

Site Outreach and Visibility

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Summary: How do you represent the breadth and depth of the work at your site to public and professional audiences? What do you highlight when approaching potential community and school district partners? How can you quantify and communicate your contributions to the university?

This collection of resources demonstrates how different National Writing Project sites describe, showcase, and market their rich and complex work. Whether created with an external or internal audience in mind, these resources provide insight into the value, reach, and impact of the sites’ work.

In addition to the resources included here, it would also be useful for sites to revisit the NWP Annual Reports, linked here, to see how the network describes the reach and relevance of its work and consider how that information might be usefully included in local site materials.

Connected Learning with Youth Voices

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Summary: Youth Voices is a connected-learning site that hosts digital learning curriculum openly available for teachers, based in sound theory about the teaching of writing. You will find incredible student work related to current events and issues, playlists that students and teachers can use, podcasts, and more. You can explore the student writing through the highlighted “Daily 25 Featured Discussions” on the homepage or visit the categories along the top of the page to find student writing on specific topics. No matter how you explore the site you are sure to be drawn to youth taking a stand and writing about some of the most pressing issues of the day.

We Are All Teachers of English Learners (NWP Radio)

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Summary: Many NWP sites have retooled their recruitment efforts, inservice offerings and institutes in light of the significant demographic changes that have placed English learners in almost every classroom. On this NWP Radio show, teacher consultants from four sites offer a look at their work with multilingual students as a foundation for the development of site inservice and continuity offerings. This resource may be of use to teacher leaders looking for specific ideas and plans to support teachers of English learners in their schools and service areas.