Institute in the Teaching of Writing

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The Oregon Writing Project Collaborative invites you to participate in their Institute in the Teaching of Writing (also known in the NWP network as the Summer Institute). The Institute is modeled after the Bay Area Writing Project and offers professional growth opportunities for teachers, kindergarten through college in all content areas, who wish to develop their writing skills and improve effectiveness in teaching writing. The Institute is the first course in the Certificate in the Teaching of Writing

The Institute will typically be offered in two formats, a winter/spring institute in Newberg and a summer institute in Salem. Both institutes offer an opportunity to look closely into both your own writing and your students' writing, to talk with colleagues about issues and ideas in the teaching of literacy, to explore writing in a digital age, to strengthen your skills and opportunities as a teacher leader, and to share classroom practices or activities. Following the Institute, participants are invited to return to campus to extend their work and/or design staff development activities for colleagues at their school sites. George Fox University graduate level semester credits can be earned by participants who complete the Institute and the required follow-up research or staff development projects. The Institute can also be taken for PDU's only.  


Teacher Writing  Participants will write, share, revise, and submit “polished” pieces for anthology and other professional publications.  This thread will include writing to prompts and sharing during the Institute as well as some on-line response within writing groups.

Inquiry  Participants will present a 45-minute “demonstration” on a “best practices” piece of his/her work.  This is a lesson or practice that is strong and worthy of further study and revision and which will be enriched by the ideas and contributions/discussions within this group.  This piece will be modeled and “coached” by an Institute team leader and/or a TC.

Common Core/EdTPA study  Participants in this Institute will use the time and space to further their professional learning on a topic of choice.  For K-12 teachers, that may be looking closely at and developing lessons for their classrooms to strengthen writing standards in light of Common Core requirements.  For college faculty, that work may include looking at the changes required in the shift from work samples to EdTPA.  There are strong and interesting intersections in both threads of work, including ways to strengthen Academic Language and use of video to analyze teaching and learning. 

Teacher Leadership  Participants will discuss what it means to be a teacher leader and explore opportunities to collaboratively design a leadership project of interest within the site.  That work might be to design and lead an inservice project, participate in Young Writers Camps, participate in leading a future Institute, develop and present a conference presentation, and/or develop a book or study group, or other activity.

Technology   Participants will explore the use of online responses to writing and the use of video reflection/analysis and/or other forms of digital media to enrich their teaching and learning. 

If you have questions or are interested in knowing more about the Institute please contact the Oregon Writing Project Collaborative at or by phone at 503-554-2881.

In Their Own Words

Comments from Program Participants

"OWP offers an opportunity to work collaboratively and share the best writing strategies with colleagues."

"A wonderful way to develop the habits of a writer."

"So many more ideas! I actually feel like going back to teach tomorrow. Craziness in July! I am excited and confident about teaching writing."

"I'm inspired to use writing in my science teaching to help my students verbalize abstract concepts."

"The Summer Institute has fostered in me a greater recognition of how all the grade levels, kindergarten through college, are connected and reflect each other."

"I appreciate the opportunity to explore the research and writings in the field ... With theory comes the power and justification to try always more things in teaching ..."

"I never knew writing would be so spirited and enlightening."

"The freedom to write and think and reflect and write again is a wonderful gift."