Teacher Inquiry

Practitioner Inquiry and the Practice of Teaching: Some Thoughts on Better

Author: Susan Lytle Summary: In this article, Lytle observes that teacher-researchers aim primarily to teach better, a theme she finds illuminated in Atul Gawande’s Better: A Surgeon’s Notes on Performance, a physician-written book about the practice of medicine. She discusses why it makes a difference to ask those who work...

A Collection of Resources on Teacher Inquiry

Summary: This collection of materials on teacher inquiry was developed for a 2003 NWP Teacher Inquiry Communities Network online conference. A valuable resource for teachers who engage in or facilitate inquiry projects, the collection contains extensive and practical information on engaging in teacher inquiry including definitions, along with forms and...

Creating a Culture of Inquiry Through the Use of Model Lessons

Author: Suzanne Linebarger Summary: Suzanne Linebarger, associate director of the Northern California Writing Project, describes how her site conducts an inservice program of model lessons that supports collective teacher inquiry into key concepts in teaching reading and writing. Useful for teacher leaders developing or leading school-based or outside professional development,...

Lost in Translation: Assessing Writing of English Language Learners

Author: Tom Meyer, Fabiola Lieberstein-Solera, and Martha Young Summary: If you are planning professional development on the assessment of writing that involves students whose first language is not English, you may want to read this thoughtful article. The authors, the site director and two bilingual teacher leaders from the Hudson...

Such Stuff as Writing Dreams Are Made Of: Technology in the Writing Retreat

Author: Michelle Rogge Gannon Summary: This article describes how to plan and implement a Professional Writing Retreat that supports writers who create multimodal texts, and how to troubleshoot technology-related issues that might arise. Included are guidelines for responding to multimodal writers in ways that support their revision in various media....

School-Based Study Groups Build Community

Summary: Teacher leaders involved in planning and/or facilitating teacher study groups will find a useful resource in this brief article describing how the NWP in Vermont developed and launched a long-term school-based teacher study group with several districts. The leaders of the program found the “open-endedness of the study group...

Lawnmowers, Parties, and Writing Groups: What Teacher-Authors Have to Teach Us about Writing for Publication

Author: Anne Elrod Whitney Summary: When teachers write for others in their profession they are taking on a form of leadership and embracing a means of advocating for the value of classroom inquiry and reflective practice. This article by Anne Whitney, a researcher who has studied the professional practice of...

Protocols: Looking at Student Work (for participants) and Looking at Student Work (for facilitator)

Summary: This protocol from the Hudson Valley Writing Project takes teachers through the steps of looking at student work in a professional development session. The accompanying script helps a facilitator to guide participants through the “turns” in the protocol process. Adapted from the Prospect Center Descriptive Review Process and the...

“Save the Last Word for Me” Protocol

Author: Patricia Averette Summary: This protocol is designed for participants to clarify and deepen thinking about readings groups may engage with as part of an institute, teacher study group, or professional meeting. It provides a structure that enables group participants to engage in close reading and share their thinking in...

Revision and Writing Groups in the First Grade: Finding the Black Ninja Fish

Author: Joanna Franklin Summary: After her experience participating in a writing group in her NWP summer institute, this teacher/author developed an instructional sequence in order to teach revision in her first grade class. She begins in September with students rereading their writing, advances through Author’s Chair and the creation of...