Writing with the James Webb Space Telescope

Ever since NASA began releasing images captured by the James Webb Space Telescope, I’ve become reacquainted with my child self’s way of thinking about space–how every Milky Way diorama, every glow in the dark star sticker affixed to the ceiling, every classroom poster of those dusty, celestial bodies evoked deep wonder. Part of the joy […]

Writers as Content Creators: Building Ideas to Write On

This summer during Camp Rewrite, I had an illuminating conversation with Utah teacher John Arthur. In his sixth grade classroom, he frames everything students do as “content creation”. After all, Arthur said, this is what every kid wants to be — a content creator. An influencer. So, what would it look like if we reframed […]

All Things Made New: My New Book About Writing

This year on Moving Writers, I’ve spotlighted re-reads of some older books about writing, and not all of them by teachers. Together, we examined the writer’s inner life with the poet Ted Hughes, practiced memory writing with the book Metro: Journeys in Writing Creatively, and honed our questions for conferring with the wonderful Barry Lane. […]

All Things Made New: A Classic of Classroom Revision

This year on Moving Writers, I am dusting off some old-but-wise books on my shelf about writing, creating a tiny review, then considering how one passage from the book can inform writing instruction today, even decades after the book was first published.  This month, I’ll consider After The End by Barry Lane, the original edition. […]

Syntax Study for Earth Day

Placing Maggie Smith’s “Good Bones” and Craig Santos Perez’s “Good Fossil Fuels” side by side can elicit a wide-ranging classroom conversation about the ways the climate crisis is downplayed.  Through describing points of convergence and divergence, students can ponder how the “recycled” aspects of Smith’s syntax and prosody appearing in Perez’s poem challenge their thinking […]