TEACHERS AS WRITERS 2 (TAW2, 2011-2012) Endorsed by the National Association for the Teaching of English (NATE) and supported by Professor Richard Andrews (Institute of Education, London University), this research project began in 2009 and is aimed at developing leading teachers of writing. The project is led by Dr Jeni Smith (Lecturer in Education at the UEA), and Simon Wrigley (past chair of NATE and English adviser for Buckinghamshire LA). TAW practices informed Ofsted’s recommendations in ‘English at the Crossroads’ (2010). Evidence from the project has been published by NATE. ‘Teachers as Writers 2’ will be a second Buckinghamshire group formed for one year, linked to the national site: nwp.org.uk
RATIONALE: Professor Richard Andrews proposed a national writing project similar to the successful NWP in the USA (nwp.org.us), and advocated, in ‘Getting Going’, that teachers of writing should write. Teachers of writing also need to gather to reflect on their practice. Furthermore, if writing is to develop and matter to all pupils, then teachers have to let their own experiences of writing influence the writing experiences they organise in classrooms. Writers’ development should include opportunities to reflect through writing, with no obligation other than to express themselves as they wish. Teachers also need space to reflect on the fullness of what writing means to them and on the process of writing. Standards rise, inclusion flourishes, and teachers’ professionalism grows when they are empowered and internally motivated rather than being over-reliant on externally imposed approaches to writing and the testing of writing. (cf Richard Andrews’ analysis and proposals in ‘Getting Going’ DCSF 2008).
2011- 2012 TAW2 GROUP: The group will be formed of up to 10 Primary and Secondary teachers who wish to write and reflect together. There will be 6 half-day meetings (one per half-term) as follows: 22/9/2011;
1/11/2011; 18/1/2012; 1/3/2012; 24/5/2012; 3/7/2012. All sessions will run 2-5 p.m. at the TLC. Teachers will also be expected to participate throughout the year in a closed electronic forum. This group will contribute to the research project, providing professional development for 10 teachers in writing and reflecting on the teaching of writing. The evidence gathered by the group will lead to publication, contributing to a growing bank of evidence. Teachers will be asked to ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦
write regularly and share some of their writing reflect on their writing journeys respond to and discuss with other writers, live and online termly observe, interview and record 2 pupils as writers introduce writing exercises and reflect on the teaching of writing
Applications to join TAW2 should be made to email@example.com by 1 July 2011 on the form provided. Applicants will hear by July 8th whether they have a place on the project.
Simon Wrigley, County Adviser for English, Buckinghamshire School Improvement Service 01296 383352 firstname.lastname@example.org