About Writing

Collaborating to Write Dialogue

Author: Janis Cramer Summary: By engaging children in a collaborative workshop environment to help them learn to develop characters, consider word choice, and interweave dialogue and description, the author simultaneously helped her students to strengthen social and independent writing skills. Opportunities to perform their dialogues in front of the class...

Using Metaphor to Explore Writing Processes

Author: Christian Knoeller Summary: In this article, Christian Knoeller describes a metaphor writing assignment that offers an effective alternative to instructional materials that present writing processes in overly simple and mechanical ways. Knoeller argues that metaphor enables examinations of how we compose and revise, how we go beyond static processes,...

30 Ideas for Teaching Writing

Summary: This resource offers successful strategies contributed by experienced Writing Project teachers. Readers will benefit from this variety of eclectic, classroom-tested techniques. These ideas originated as full-length articles in NWP publications (a link to the full article accompanies each idea below). This resource can be offered to summer institute or...

Students Tell Their Stories Digitally

Author: Joel Elliott Summary: When designing a digital storytelling workshop, it may be easy to forget that it’s really about the telling of stories and the writing practices that generate powerful narratives. This piece provides a good conceptual starting point and reminder that in such settings, students are more engaged,...

Rural Voices Radio, Volume II

Author: National Writing Project Summary: Rural Voices Radio, Volume II presents audio programs from four more Writing Project sites as part of the Rural Voices, Country Schools program. Each episode paints a portrait of a rural school, as told by the students and teachers themselves, and celebrates what’s “genuinely good,...

Teacher Discoveries and Connected Learning

Author: Joe Dillon Summary: How does digital writing shift our teaching? This blog post describes how multiple NWP teachers have applied Connected Learning principles to their classrooms. Hyperlinks within the piece take readers to additional details about each teacher’s work. From discovering how blogging can inform writing instruction to enacting...

Portfolios That Make a Difference: A Four-Year Journey

Author: Judith Ruhana Summary: In this article, a teacher recaps her journey with portfolio assessment over four years. The writer shows how teachers can and need to adjust their teaching based on their students’ reflections on learning. The article will be of interest to teachers grappling with issues of assessment...

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...

Author to Author: How Text Influences Young Writers

Author: Dina Sechio DeCristofaro Summary: What role does reading play in children’s development as writers? After surveying her fifth graders about where they get ideas for writing, the author of this piece examined the relationship between what students read and what they write. She identifies specific aspects of what her...

Rural Voices Radio

Summary: Rural Voices Radio, a product of the National Writing Project’s Rural Voices, Country Schools program, celebrates what is “genuinely good, genuinely rural” about America’s rural schools. Each half-hour program comprises original poems, stories, and essays by teachers and students from Writing Project sites across the country about the places...