UC Merced Hosts Summer Writing Workshops for Teachers

Educators are invited to discover new techniques to teach writing, learn how to help students develop as writers and enhance their own abilities as writers when the UC Merced Writing Project offers a variety of short summer courses beginning June 9, 2003.

Open to K-12 educators in all disciplines, the courses meet in three, half-day sessions presented at the Merced Tri-College Center. One unit of credit is available for each course. Teachers may register for as many courses as they would like.

All courses share the common goals of enhancing skills and confidence in writing, and introducing effective approaches to teaching writing. Individual sessions, however, also are designed to meet such targeted objectives as providing writing instruction that meets the California English Language Arts Standards and supporting resource specialists with strategies to meet the special needs of their students.

Among the other offerings are "Nonfiction Writing for K-2," "The Reading-Writing Connection Across Disciplines for Grades 7-12," "Writing for Teachers: Practicing the Craft for K-12," "Writing for an Audience: The Importance of Publishing Student Work for Grades 3-8" and "Readers Workshop Grades 7-12: They Said it Couldn't Be Done!"

Course instructors are local teachers who have graduated from the UC Merced Writing Project's Summer Invitational Institute and are now Teacher Consultants for the Writing Project. "These are quality educators who are dedicated to the teaching of writing, have high expectations for their students and are committed to continuing their own professional development," said Pauline Sahakian, director of the UC Merced Writing Project.

Since its inception in January 2001, more than 3,400 participants and 99 schools have taken part in programs presented by the UC Merced Writing Project, which is a California Writing Project site and affiliate of the National Writing Project. The success of the programs have resulted in a growing network of local educators who conduct Writing Project programs to an expanding circle of teachers and administrators as they continue their own professional development through reading, writing and research.

"Professional development programs can have a big, positive impact on schools - especially schools considered to be low-performing schools - and on student achievement," Sahakian said.

The summer sessions run from June 9 through July 30 and have a fee of $120 per course. Teachers are encouraged to check with their school administrators to find out if federal funding or other grant funding is available to cover registration costs. Friday, June 6 is the deadline to register for sessions starting Monday, June 9.

Registration forms and course information for the summer sessions are available online at www.ucmerced.edu. Information also can be obtained by contacting the UC Merced Writing Project office at (209) 381-6559 or by email at vicki.hernandez@ucop.edu. For additional background on the National Writing Project, please visit

Writing Workshop Schedule

Writing Workshop Application

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