About Writing

Teacher Transformation in the National Writing Project

Author: Anne Elrod Whitney Summary: Why do teachers so often attribute their personal and professional “transformation” to their writing project experiences? Researcher Anne Whitney considers how participants’ writing time and writing group experience impacts their identity as writers, learners, and instructional leaders. Reading this study could spur an interesting discussion...

Looking at Student Writing as Part of Professional Development

Author: Bruce Penniman, Stephanie Joyce, Karen Smith and Julie Webb Summary: In this NWP webinar, several leaders from the Area3 (UC-Davis) and Western Massachusetts Writing Projects discuss their experiences offering professional development to high needs elementary schools. While the site leaders offer helpful insights and perspectives on the development of...

Helping High School Students “Gear Up” for College

Author: Art Peterson Summary: This article highlights a program designed to support 9th graders in understanding how to differentiate and act upon revision and editing concerns. The program’s development and implementation reflects a collaboration between area high school writing centers, teachers, and university composition faculty. Since Gear-Up funds programs throughout...

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...

Local Site Research Initiative Final Report: Impact of NWP Professional Development on Student Learning

Summary: This report on the 2004-2006 results of Local Sites Research Initiative studies demonstrates the positive impact of NWP professional development on student learning. Conducted at a variety of sites around the nation, these studies consistently showed greater improvement in writing on every measured attribute among students taught by NWP-trained...

Are You Ready for College Writing?

Author: Mary Ann Smith Summary: What is college writing like? This report describes a series of pilot workshops for high school juniors focused on this question. Students in the workshops quickly discovered that college writing is not the traditional five-paragraph essay. Instead, it is multifaceted, always involves critical thinking, and...

Inviting Parents in: Expanding Our Community Base to Support Writing

Author: Cathy Fleischer and Kimberly Coupe Pavlock Summary: Looking for ideas for ways to reach out to parents to help them understand why we teach writing in the ways we do and to share successful strategies for how they might help their children or teens with writing?  And what about...

Writing Together, at Home and Online

Summary: A sojourn at home can be the occasion for lots of creativity around topics and projects of interest. For those with internet access and a suitable devices, there are also ways to connect with others as you write. Here are some of our favorites from our colleague organizations in...

Formative Assessment as a Compass: Looking at Student Work as an Intentional Part of Ongoing Professional Development

Author: Beth Rimer and Terri McAvoy Summary: This e-book is a practical resource for teachers as they think about formative assessment in relation to writing instruction. Led by questions posed by the authors and links within the text, a study group, individual teacher or professional development program facilitator can use...

Extending the Conversation: Writing as Praxis

Author: Robert Yagelski Summary: This essay is a key reading for individuals and study groups looking to understand the “transformation” that teachers say occurs in writing project institutes and other programs when they write, respond as members of writing groups, revise, and publish. Yagelski grounds his exploration in theory as he considers...