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Local Teachers Learn Writing Strategies at Summer Institute

Warner Hosts Fifth Annual Genesee Valley Writing Project Summer Institute
As part of its effort to improve the teaching of writing in area schools through teacher-centered professional development, the University of Rochester’s Warner School of Education will hold its 2012 Genesee Valley Writing Project Summer Institute from July 9-27 on River Campus.
The Summer Institute, the heart of the Genesee Valley Writing Project (GVWP), is a three-week long intensive professional development experience for teachers from urban, suburban, and rural regions of Monroe and surrounding counties who are committed to helping students improve their writing back in the classroom. This summer, the GVWP will provide seven local teachers of all levels with opportunities to meet, read, write, and develop teaching strategies.
During the Summer Institute, participating teachers will hear from fellow educators and writers; work through daily teacher demonstration workshops, collaborative writing groups, reading research groups, and presentations that draw from local and national literacy expertise; study the latest research on the teaching of writing; share knowledge, expertise, and effective classroom practices; and explore current issues related to understanding the power of writing to support social justice work.
Summer Institute participants, representing teachers from various disciplines and levels of instruction, teach in the Geneseo Central School District, Pittsford Central School District, West Irondequoit Central School District, Rochester City School District, Derech HaTorah of Rochester, and Nazareth College
Joanne Larson
According to Professor Joanne Larson, director of the GVWP, the professional development model of teachers teaching teachers has been the cornerstone of the GVWP since its inception. “Our local site, and in particular the Summer Institute, draws on teachers’ knowledge, wisdom, and experience to enhance writing instruction in all classrooms,” Larson says.  
The GVWP’s successful model for professional development helps teachers across all subject areas and grade levels, from early childhood to college level, learn strategies to teach students to become accomplished writers and learners. The program also creates professional communities that help teachers keep instruction fresh and vibrant in the classroom and prepares teacher-leaders who can provide professional development within their school districts.
All follow-up programs and activities—community outreach programs, mini-conferences, school-based inservice workshops, collaborative partnerships, and teacher study groups—will evolve from the centerpiece of the Summer Institute and take place throughout the remainder of the year. In addition to the Summer Institute, the GVWP is offering a new Young Writers Summer Camp this August for sixth- to eighth-grade students to learn and improve their prose and writing skills.
National Writing Project logoSponsored by and housed within the Warner School and administered through the Warner Center for Professional Development and Education Reform, the GVWP is the Greater Rochester site of the National Writing Project (NWP), a collaborative school-university partnership and federally-funded professional network linking teachers at over 200 university-based sites across the country. This is the fifth year that the Warner School and GVWP have received funding from the NWP to support excellence in the teaching of writing. In addition to introducing successful strategies in the teaching of writing, the NWP develops the leadership, programs, and research needed for teachers to help students become successful writers and learners in the classroom. To learn more about the NWP, visit www.nwp.org.
For more information about the GVWP, visit www.rochester.edu/warner/gvwp, or contact Joanne Larson at (585) 275-0900 or by e-mail at jlarson@warner.rochester.edu.
About the Warner School of Education
Founded in 1958, the University of Rochester’s Warner School of Education offers master’s and doctoral degree programs in teaching and curriculum, school leadership, higher education, educational policy, counseling, human development, and health professions education. The Warner School of Education offers a new accelerated option for its EdD programs that allows eligible students to earn a doctorate in education in as few as three years part time while holding a professional job in the same field. The Warner School of Education is recognized both regionally and nationally for its tradition of preparing practitioners and researchers to become leaders and agents of change in schools, universities, and community agencies; generating and disseminating research; and actively participating in education reform. 
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Media Contact: Theresa Danylak
585.275.0777; 585.278.6273 (cell)

Tags: Center for Professional Development and Education Reform, Genesee Valley Writing Project, Joanne Larson, professional development, teaching and curriculum