About Writing

Love Ties My Shoes: Long-term English Learners as Thoughtful Writers

Author: Lynn Jacobs Summary: Students in a high school English Language Development class writing a book? Lynn Jacobs’ story of her students success can inform teacher study groups and inspire professional development sessions. For details about the project, powerful student voices describing the process, and ties to professional literature that...

Thank You for Sharing: Developing Students’ Social Skills to Improve Peer Writing Conferences

Author: Keri Franklin Summary: In this article, Keri Franklin provides ideas and methods to prepare student authors for meaningful peer conferences which promote social talk in students’ responses to peers’ writings. Students benefit from peer conferences by receiving ideas from an audience of peers and more feedback than one teacher...

Striking It Rich: Finding My Digital Story in Northern California

Author: Corey Harbaugh Summary: This short piece could be a useful conversation starter or reflective tool in an institute or workshop focused on narrative. Reflecting on his excitement about the allure of new digital storytelling tools, the author reveals his insight that the power of telling our stories and making...

Because Digital Writing Matters: A Conversation with the Authors

Summary: The NWP book, Because Digital Writing Matters, examines what teachers, administrators, and parents can do to help schools meet the challenges of digital writing and to equip students with the communication skills they need to thrive in an information-rich, high-speed, high-tech culture. It provides a roadmap for teachers and...

Book Review: Rethinking Rubrics in Writing Assessment

Author: Meg Petersen Summary: This review describes the work of high school teacher and author Maja Wilson, whose book examines what assessment without rubrics looks like and where it may take us. The sample chapter, “My Troubles with Rubrics,” advises that instead of reviewing student papers based on prescribed categories,...

Introduction: Why Digital Writing Matters

Author: National Writing Project, with Dànielle Nicole DeVoss, Elyse Eidman-Aadahl, and Troy Hicks Summary: What does it mean to write digitally? What does it mean to be a teacher of writing in a digital age? In this introduction to the book, Because Digital Writing Matters, the authors provide an overview...

Peer Review Times Two

Author: Denise Marchionda Summary: If you are developing or facilitating a professional development program that includes peer editing as a topic/theme/strand you will want to check out Denise Marchionda’s “two-peer editing system.” Marchionda shares the checklist and specific step-by-step directions she has students follow in her class when editing/reviewing one...

Reflective Journaling for Deeper Student Learning

Author: Anna Collins Trest Summary: Are you struggling to get students to write during journaling time? Are the responses you get cursory or less than you had hoped? If so (and even if not), then read how one elementary teacher transformed the depth of students’ writing responses by transitioning from...

Grammar, Grammars and the Teaching of Grammar

Author: Patrick Hartwell Summary: This article offers a recap of understandings of the concept of grammar: what it is, and when, why, and how it matters. The author, alluding to the relationship between grammar and power, suggests that we should consider how to support students in communicating strategically. This foundational...

Hey Matt! There’s a Reason We Write Like Every Day!

Author: Molly Toussant Summary: Students often wonder why they have to write every day. In this piece, with her students as her audience, one teacher outlines and then elaborates the beliefs that guide her teaching of writing. Points of use for this article may be early in summer institutes or...