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Minnesota Writing Project.Center for Writing's home page.

Minnesota Writing Project

The Minnesota Writing Project aims to improve K–college literacy in Minnesota. Housed within the Center for Writing at the University of Minnesota–Twin Cities, MWP is a local site of the National Writing Project, which "focuses the knowledge, expertise, and leadership of our nation's educators on sustained efforts to improve writing and learning for all learners."

2019–20 MWP Workshop Series

The Minnesota Writing Project’s 2019–20 Workshop Series features four events for teachers from all content areas, grades, and levels of experience to think and learn together with expert educators. We will share a variety of perspectives from research and practicing teachers for your consideration, and offer a space to dialogue about the work involved in taking up various aspects of teaching. Click here for more details.

Register now! 


Showcasing MWP teachers

Our Teacher Showcase feature gives our recent ISI participants a chance to speak their mind about the teaching of writing and the need for quality professional development. Return often to read these profiles.

Jonathan Nelson
Grade you teach:
7th grade
School: Minnetonka Middle School West
Summer Institute Writing:
Expired Candy
Teaching Demonstration: Thick and Thin: Crafting Research Questions

Reflections on teaching

How has your participation in the Summer Institute influenced your beliefs about the instruction of writing? The Summer Institute really made me a believer in the power of a strong writing community and writing group. I think writing is a great opportunity for students to confront themselves, and their writing groups help them to process and understand their own thoughts and beliefs. I hope to alter my writing instruction to allow students to be reflective and critical of their experiences as they grow into adult learners.

Describe one “take-away” from the Summer Institute that you plan to share with your colleagues or implement in your classroom. My take-away from the Summer Institute that I plan to share with my colleagues is the power of a writing group. With thoughtful planning, a lot of great professional development can emerge from teachers simply thinking, writing, and talking with other teachers (especially across content areas!).

In what ways does writing positively impact your students? Again, I think writing positively impacts students because it gives them a snapshot of their thinking at a particular time in their life. Writing is a process that is both easy and difficult, but the opportunities to grow as an individual make it an extremely worthwhile process. In addition, giving students the opportunity to share their work (and to hear the work of others) also helps build up communities and learners.

What do students need in your school to become better writers? Time. I wish I could give my students all the time in the world to work on their writing and find joy in their writing.

What is a resource on writing or the teaching of writing (book, article, website, other PD) that you would recommend? Write Like This by Kelly Gallagher.



link to past showcases page

MWP video: Teachers Celebrate MWP’s Invitational Summer Institute

From our first institute in 1991 to 2016, teachers share their experiences of participating.  Enjoy this short video featuring several teachers identifying the impact the institute has had on their personal and professional lives.   

Ann Thompson, Producer
Charlie McCarron, Videographer

click here for a full-screen version of the video




The Minnesota Writing Project is an official site of the National Writing Project and is housed in the Center for Writing, College of Liberal Arts, and the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities.

Upcoming MWP opportunities!

Scholastic Art & Writing Awards

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Register for the 2019–20 MWP Workshop Series


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