Fairfield, New Haven and Middlesex County teachers study writing this summer at Fairfield University


 

Teachers focus on writing, learning, and leading in the digital age

Image: Fairfield UniversityMore than sixteen Connecticut teachers will convene at Fairfield University and join approximately 3,000 kindergarten- through-college teachers across the country who will be attending four-week National Writing Project (NWP) Summer Institutes in July to learn new strategies to improve their students' writing skills.

"The Fairfield, New Haven and Middlesex County teachers who attend the Summer Institute will return to their classrooms next fall equipped with proven strategies for teaching young people how to write and how to use writing to learn," said Sharon J. Washington, NWP Executive Director.

Teachers from Ansonia, Bridgeport, Brookfield, Clinton, Easton, Fairfield, Monroe, New Canaan, New Haven and Stamford will participate. These teachers, under the leadership of experienced directors of the Connecticut Writing Project-Fairfield (CWP), an affiliate of the NWP, will spend four weeks in intensive study of theory and best practices of teaching youngsters from kindergarten through high school how to write creatively, clearly and correctly in many situations, both academic and personal. During the Institute, teachers will follow the practice of the NWP that believes the best teachers of teachers are teachers who have been successful in their classrooms. Each of the Institute Fellows will present demonstrations of their understanding of how to improve both writing and reading for students of all grades and abilities.

Washington continued, "Writing continues to be the signature means of communication in the digital age, and these institutes provide valuable continuous learning opportunities for local teachers." Located in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands and co-directed by local university faculty and classroom teachers, the NWP institutes offer teachers the opportunity to study the latest research on the teaching of writing and to share knowledge, expertise, and effective classroom practices.

A recent report by the Alliance for Excellent Education and Carnegie Corporation of New York adds another dimension to writing's importance to learning. "Writing to Read" identified particular writing practices that are, according to the report, "effective in helping students increase their reading skills and comprehension."

National research studies confirm significant gains in writing performance among students whose teachers participate in NWP programs. Past surveys of teachers who participated in summer institutes found that 95 percent gave high ratings "to the institute's contribution to their understanding of the teaching of writing and its usefulness for their own classrooms and students" (Inverness Research).

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Media Contact: Joan Grant, (203) 254-4000, ext. 2950, jgrant@fairfield.edu

Posted on June 7, 2010

Vol. 42, No. 310