National Writing Project

Teachers Across the Country Connect in Summer Learning Opportunities—Focus on New Ways to Teach Writing, Engage Colleagues, and Develop Leadership

For Immediate Release


Berkeley, CA, May 28, 2013 — Like their students, teachers across the country look forward to their summer vacation. But this summer, many teachers will be taking some of their time to continue learning. More than 3,000 educators will connect to Invitational and Advanced Summer Institutes through the National Writing Project (NWP), a unique opportunity to expand their knowledge and understanding of how best to teach writing in the digital age. In addition to face-to-face learning opportunities this summer, NWP teacher-leaders will also be active participants in open online collaborations with thousands of local educators made possible through the Educator Innovator initiative.

Launching this summer, the Educator Innovator initiative will work to connect educators—in schools and universities, libraries, museums, science centers, and community-based organizations—with a specially curated set of learning opportunities that support their interests in creative and powerful learning for the young people they work with. The Educator Innovator initiative, funded as part of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation's Summer of Making and Connecting, is a summer campaign to encourage a broad range of people to take the summer to engage in creative and connected learning—to make something, to learn a new skill in a new way, and to experience their own creativity and capacity in fields as diverse as the arts and engineering.

"New literacies and technology are important factors in 21st century teaching and learning. Integrating these new technologies into the work of our Writing Project is an important way to support teachers, increase student engagement, and ultimately enhance student learning and achievement," said Dr. Kim Douillard, Director of the San Diego Area Writing Project.

Serving 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 network offers teachers the opportunity to study the latest research on teaching writing and share knowledge, expertise, and effective classroom practices with one another.

Following the summer activities, these teachers will be a part of a growing national network of teacher-leaders and "educator innovators." They will continue to collaborate in person and online, and to benefit from the knowledge and experience of other educators and partners such as The Mozilla Foundation.

"These teachers are eager to help their students become better writers and learners," said Dr. Sharon J. Washington, NWP Executive Director. "Following the summer learning opportunities, they will also be better equipped to support their colleagues as they prepare students to write in all disciplines to meet college- and career-ready standards."

National research studies have shown that professional development programs designed and delivered by NWP sites have a positive effect on the writing achievement of students across grade levels, schools, and contexts. To learn more, visit


The National Writing Project (NWP) is a nationwide network of educators working together to improve the teaching of writing in the nation's schools and in other settings. NWP provides high-quality professional development programs to teachers in a variety of disciplines and at all levels, from early childhood through university. Through its nearly 200 university-based sites serving all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands, the National Writing Project develops the leadership, programs, and research needed for teachers to help students become successful writers and learners. For more information, visit