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 the local site of the National Writing Project, an authorized provider of No Child Left Behind.
Much of what we read in the local education section of the newspaper describes shifting tests scores or school closings. It is infrequent that we are offered a peek into the mind and heart of teachers. Our new Teacher Showcase feature will give 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.
In Teaching for Joy and Justice, Linda Christensen uses writing as a means to empower her students, young people who often come to her feeling as though they have very little power in the world.
My Reflective Practice Group book for the summer institute was Kimberly Hill Campbell and Kristi Latimer’s Beyond the Five Paragraph Essay. While the title is maybe a bit misleading (Campbell and Latimer don’t quite take readers all the way “beyond” and into what an alternative formal summative assessment might look like), they do a good job of pointing out the flaws in the 5-paragraph essay, as well as providing resources for teachers who are interested in creating a real culture of writing in their classrooms. They talk about writing to explore ideas, something that’s not often taught. Most interesting to me was their reworking of the writing process, which placed thesis generation near the end.
Believing that teachers can empower other teachers, members provide an environment in which teachers can learn from one another and then share that learning with others in their classrooms, departments, schools, and districts. MWP is committed to improving the literacy of all students, strengthening university and school collaboration on reading and writing instruction, and increasing the professional power of teachers in meeting state standards and the curricular demands of NCLB.
Identifies exemplary teachers who can teach other teachers
Encourages teachers to write
Assists schools and districts in identifying their literacy needs and supports them in meeting those needs through pertinent staff development
Supports long-term reform and improvement in literacy instruction through classroom-based, action research
Maintains partnerships between schools and the University
Promotes cultural, racial, and ethnic diversity and understanding within MWP
For additional information, see About MWP.
Muriel Thompson, Director
MWP teacher consultants:
The MWP Book Club will begin discussing Pat Conroy's My Reading Life on Monday, April 14.
For more information, go to our News & Events page.
Check out Candance Doerr-Stevens' profile on our Center for Writing alumni pages!