Ozarks Writing Project Guess Day

Yesterday I had the privilege to be invited to the Ozarks Writing Project guest day. A teacher from another elementary in my district invited her principal and her principal invited me. Let me see if I can briefly describe OWP.....
  • 4 week summer institute for teachers focusing on the craft of teaching and learning about writing
  • Intense but valuable writing activities
  • Teachers teaching teachers
  • There is WAY more to it than that and hopefully some of the participants will comment and explain more eloquently than I have here:)
You might think that I am confident in my writing because I keep up this blog but you are wrong. I have read some blogs that get the same points across as I do but in a musical/story-like way. My goal is to just ideas out there in a short and sweet post.

Can you believe they were also promoting Twitter? They had the live twitter feed for #owp & #nwp scrolling so we could see what was going on with other writing institutes. Pretty cool stuff!

Unfortunately I was not able to stay all day but we did a really neat project with a teacher who teaches at-risk students. She talked about having a difficult time teaching about writing a reflection letter until she heard the Brad Paisly song "Letter to Me" on the radio. She then played the music video for her students and had them write letters to their future self. It was really neat.

I have a feeling this kind of stuff is what took place all the time for the 4-week institute. I really wanted to attend this summer but 4 weeks was more than I could manage. However, they are talking about hosting a principal version of this in the future.


  1. Not much time to comment...because yes, of course, we are on our way starting another demo about "Brainstorming Our Lives" so I'm interested in what types of writing are produced from this. :)

    Thank you for coming. The 4-weeks does impact a teacher and I think for almost every National Writing Project Summer Institute Fellow from around the US, they do walk into their classroom with a new lens about instruction and the impact that writing to learn has on our students.

    After the demo we process the activities of the demonstration itself and the importance of what we did and why it actually works in the classroom. It's a thoughtful and reflective conversation for the demonstrator, and I loved how the Rogersville principal said afterwards, "What a powerful impact this must make on teaching and instruction. I would imagine this discussion could really change the face of the classroom." And we all agreed, that yes, we are changing through our learning.

    Thanks again for attending! Please keep in touch (and you will be hearing from us, too) and recommend teacher leaders in your building.
    Casey Daugherty

  2. Awesome post! I am a memeber of the OWP. I wasn't there on guest day, but it's wonderful to see administrators get a glimpse of how wonderful the this type of professional development is. Speaking of Twitter. I found the link to your blog there.

    Larry neuburger