On Saturday, April 2, 2011, the Kean University Writing Project hosted its first Annual Spring Professional Development event "Teachers Teaching Teachers: A Day of Conversations, Practices, Sharing, Readings, and Writing about Writing in the Classroom." More than 70 educational professionals came together to participate in workshops focusing on the intricacies of writing in the K-16 classroom setting. Kean University Writing Project teacher fellows Marie Meriton, Lisa Bottone, Pat Kranz, MonaRae Stokes, Pam Westry-Rodgers, Kim Kiefer, Kathy Bentley, and Sue Kenney hosted the eight interactive workshops offered to attendees. Participants were delighted with the selection of sessions offered, almost to a fault – "Please don’t make us choose next time! I want to attend them all!" Post-event praise ran high among participants: "[T]his past weekend [event] has truly inspired me…I even started to implement some of the techniques in my classroom [the following Monday] morning!" Teachers Teaching Teachers event organizer Mark Sutton adds with heartfelt thanks to all of Saturday’s participants, "I heard nothing but compliments on the quality of the sessions and the chances for people to talk. The day was a perfect representation of what NWP should be: teachers helping each other become better teachers. [The teachers] should all be proud of the part [they] played in that."
The Kean University Writing Project (KUWP) is a regional site of the National Writing Project (NWP), a federally funded organization that provides professional development services to teachers throughout the United States. There are over 200 sites in the NWP network. The Kean University Writing Project takes its mission seriously: To provide high quality professional development services, in accordance with the National Writing Project’s "teachers teaching teachers" model of inservice delivery. Teachers are the heart of this organization.
KUWP Director Linda Best on the inclusion of teacher fellows delivering workshops during professional development events such as the one held on April 2nd: "Teachers from the region who participate in KUWP programming are the future of this important site. Their outreach, both in the classroom and to colleagues, extends our mission, enhancing the teaching of writing and offering the promise of success for the diverse student populations we serve. In the short time since earning the status as an approved site of the National Writing Project, KUWP has distinguished itself—through the work of its teacher-consultants--both regionally and nationally in programming like the successful event they ran on April 2nd."
The Kean University Writing Project offers professional development to schools and districts year round. Teachers are invited to apply to the site’s Invitational Summer Institute (ISI), hosted annually in July. Participation in the ISI entitles graduates of the program to all the benefits of becoming a KUWP teacher fellow, including the opportunity to host workshops like those discussed above. For more information, call (908) 737-0377 or visit us at our website, www.kuwp.org.