Awards & Recognition
- NCWP Teacher Consultant
After my first year of teaching in 2007, I attended a three-day mini-institute at College of the Siskiyous lead by Suzanne Linebarger. From the very first inservice, I felt respected as a professional in my field. I was treated as a valuable resource with knowledge and expertise that needed to be shared with others. This empowered me as a teacher. I started my next school year with confidence and energy to tackle the many challenges that come with being a teacher. NCWP forever changed the lens that I view my teaching practice with. I see myself as a teacher researcher using inquiry to guide my instruction. I see my students and their work as a way to inform my instruction and it drives my inquiry further. Because of NCWP I see my teaching more holistically. I know that pedagogy is only one part. Without collaboration, reading of professional texts, and engaging in the writing process myself, my teaching would be not be as full.
Before working with NCWP I did not view myself as a writer. I knew I liked to write, I liked teaching writing, I knew writing was important, but I would have never described myself as a writer. Part of this was because I had a very limited view of what writing actually is. Now I know that my grocery lists, jotted down poems, responses and reflections, short articles, writing done alongside my students--it all matters. I write to find out how I feel about things, or to figure out something. I understand that to be an effective teacher of writing I need to be a writer myself.
From my very first Writing Project experience I was treated with respect as professional in my field. I always feel valued and that what I bring to the table matters. I love to work with others in my field and help foster that same experience for them. This transfers to my own school site as well. My continued professional development with NCWP keeps important professional readings in my hands that give me a context to view the latest developments in education. I am able to think critically and speak in an informed way that naturally leads to leadership. Being part of shaping my own school’s philosophy about literacy instruction adds depth and brings life to my role as a teacher.
I believe writing matters. It matters in all subjects and in all forms. Writing needs to be relevant to our students; it needs to have importance outside of the classroom. Writing must help our students wonder, ask important questions, argue, and talk. I believe that writing is the vehicle that moves students to work out difficult concepts and deepen their understanding.
These are my “go to,” books. I use them in one way or another every time I teach. They are practical, but coupled with analysis, student examples, and personal reflection from the authors.
- Reading Reasons by Kelly Gallagher
- Write Like This by Kelly Gallagher
- Texts and Lessons for Teaching Literature by Daniels/Steineke
- Texts and Lessons for Content Area Reading by Daniels/Steineke