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TCRWP News

92nd Saturday Reunion
March 18, 2017 9:00 AM - 3:00 PM

January 11th, 2017

For one Saturday in both the spring and the fall, the TCRWP opens its doors to thousands of educators from all over the country. We offer keynotes and closings by renowned authors and leaders in the field of education, senior Project staff, including Lucy Calkins and all TCRWP staff developers. Read More ...

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Remembering Kathleen Tolan

December 5th, 2016

It is with immeasurable sadness that I write to tell you that we have lost our beloved Kathleen Tolan. She died in her sleep on December 4, at the age of 53.
There is no loss that our organization could ever suffer that could be so deep, so devastating. Kathleen supported each of us with boundless love and intensity. Read More

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TCRWP 2016 Preliminary Data Report

November 29th, 2016

The Teachers College Reading and Writing Project at Columbia University tracks student achievement and student growth in a variety of ways, including using running records to measure growth in reading levels, using performance assessments to measure students' growth in higher order text-based thinking, and using normed on-demand argument, information, and narrative writing to measure growth in writing. We also collect state testing data. This report examines state testing data. Read More...

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TCRWP Social Studies Institute

November 18th, 2016

This November, the TCRWP hosted a three day Social Studies Institute. The institute was designed for teachers of students in grades 3-8 and grew out of the success of the Content Area Institutes of past years. The institute opened with a keynote by TCRWP Associate Director of Professional Development, Emily Butler Smith on the key ideas that underlie the TCRWP's work in social studies. Read More...

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The TCRWP Classroom Libraries Are Here!

November 10th, 2016

On Friday, October 21, Heinemann Publishers hosted a party to celebrate the arrival of the TCRWP Classroom Libraries. In honor of the occasion, one entire library—the fourth grade on-benchmark library—was displayed in all its glory, filling twenty bins, each bearing its own distinctive label. Guests at the celebration were amazed by the sheer size of the collection, and were thrilled to hear more about the genesis of the effort. Read More...

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New Kindergarten Unit Coming Soon!

November 10th, 2016

We are excited to announce that Looking Closely Like Scientists, a new Units of Study book for kindergarten writers, is in the works. The unit will be co-authored by Allyse Bader, Lizzie Hetzer and Marie Mounteer. "We're looking forward to turning this unit into a book," Allyse says, "It's been a long time favorite among kindergarten teachers across the country—and it's also a unit that has undergone especially dramatic revision." Read More...

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Drew Dudley Opens 2016-17 Principals Conference Days

November 7th, 2016

At the first TCRWP Principals Conference of the year, Drew Dudley empowered over 200 principals to create cultures of leadership in their own buildings and to celebrate what he called "lollipop moments." Read More...

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Facebook Conversations and Twitter Chats: #TCRWP

September 1st, 2016

The TCRWP has been developing more online digital forums, through which schools can collaborate and share ideas about their implementation of the reading and writing Units of Study. We host weekly chats on Twitter and this year have launched three facebook pages for conversations about the Units of Study series. Read More...

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Units of Study Video Orientations

August 23rd, 2016

The TCRWP has developed a collection of free videos that provide grade-specific mini-courses that will provide support for teachers who are implementing Units of Study for Reading, K-5 and Units of Study for Writing, K-8. We thought about the most important advice we can give you at this critical moment. You'll be given a fast-paced overview of the sequence of units for your grade level, answers to predictable questions, and the nuts and bolts help with the first unit. Read more...

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One Day Professional Development Conferences

July 27th, 2016

Beginning this September, the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project will offer a series of one-day professional development conferences to be held at locations across the country and at Teachers College. Tickets for all TCRWP one-day conferences are available online. Read More....

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Check Out Lucy and Mary's Article on School-Wide Reform in Writing

July 15th, 2016

More and more schools are realizing that the teaching of writing needs to be a priority. What does research say about the conditions that will accelerate students' growth as writers, and how can school leaders help whole schools provide those conditions to every child? Read More...

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TCRWP Classroom Libraries Now Available for Preorder!

June 14th, 2016

We're pleased to announce that Heinemann is now accepting preorders for the forthcoming TCRWP Classroom Libraries. We are excited to get these books into the hands of teachers and students everywhere, to read and enjoy all year long. The entire TCRWP staff worked tirelessly with Lucy Calkins to provide a rich variety of texts for classroom libraries. You will see that there are classroom libraries of 500-700 books, both for specific grade levels and for students who are reading below grade level benchmarks. Read More...

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New Units of Study Are Here!

June 13th, 2016

The Teachers College Reading and Writing Project and Heinemann are proud to announce the release of four additional book-length Units of Study, each addressing an especially key topic from the If...Then… titles in the Units of Study series. These four books were written out of the tremendous feedback from teachers on their power. They are designed to help teachers dig deeper into these topics and to provide the instruction necessary to build stronger readers and writers in their classrooms. Read More ...

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Summer Institutes in the Teaching of Reading and Writing...All Summer Long

June 13th, 2016

As July turns into August, the TCRWP team is revving up for two more institutes at the College, and reflecting on several score of "homegrown institutes" we have led in states dotting the country. From Hawaii to Texas, Georgia to Maine, we been welcomed by districts both large and small. Read More ...

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The TCRWP’s 2016-2017 Suggested Sequence for Units of Study

April 13th, 2016

The TCRWP is excited to release our suggested curricular sequence for the upcoming year so that those of you from TCRWP districts outside of New York City will be able to consider aligning your calendar to ours if doing so will help you benefit from the documents we write and from conference days that support the units in this sequence. Click here to download the document.

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New Units of Study Coming Soon!

March 7th, 2016

We are excited to announce that four new Units of Study books, edited by Lucy Calkins, are in the works. The new books include two in writing—information writing for grade two and literary essay for grade five, and two in reading—word detectives for grade one and mystery for grade three. Read More...

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New Project Underway at the TCRWP

January 21st, 2016

The TCRWP is excited to announce that a classroom library project is underway Read more...

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Digital Literacy at the TCRWP

January 19th, 2016

As a part of our workshop offerings for teachers in schools that partner with the TCRWP, we've been delighted to welcome Heidi Hayes Jacobs, Kristin Ziemke, and Troy Hicks. Both teachers and TCRWP staff developers have been thinking and teaching alongside one another, aiming to determine ways to best make use of digital tools in workshop classrooms to support student growth. Read more…

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Andrew Solomon Opens Principals Conference

October 20th, 2015

Andrew Solomon brought down the house at the TCRWP's first Principals Conference. Read More

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Units of Study Conference Days

August 31st, 2015

These one-day seminars are led by Lucy Calkins and senior colleagues and are designed to help teachers learn how to use the new Units of Study for Teaching Reading or Units of Study in Opinion, Information, and Narrative Writing to reach ambitious new global standards.

Click here for more information

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TCRWP Launches Unit of Study Facebook Groups

August 30th, 2015

The school year is well underway and the Units of Study for Reading, K-5, and the Units of Study in Opinion, Information, and Narrative Writing, K-8, are launching reading and writing workshops across the country and the world. Read More...

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Available Now: Online Mini-Courses, “Getting Started with Units of Study in Reading”

August 13th, 2015

The Teachers College Reading and Writing Project and Heinemann Publishing is excited to release a free online mini-course for each grade, Kindergarten through Grade 5, designed by Lucy Calkins, to help groups of teachers become oriented to and get started using the brand-new Units of Study in Teaching Reading series. Continue Reading

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College Essays: The Art of Telling One’s Story With Grace and Insight

August 13th, 2015

Every job interview, scholarship application, and college application essay will ask young adults to tell their story. One of the greatest gifts teachers can give young adults is the skill to tell their own story with power and grace. There is an art to this writing, and it is an art we can teach young writers. It involves the skills of blending narrative craft with essay structures, of attending to language and grammatical choices, of immersing oneself in the genre, of daring to innovate while carefully considering audience. Click here for more information

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Books of the Month

August 12th, 2015

When NYC Schools Chancellor, Carmen Farina was principal of PS 6 in Manhattan, she instituted a 'Book of the Month' program that has been adopted by many TCRWP schools over the years. These books are gifts to each classroom at the beginning of the month and are a wonderful way for schools to come together and celebrate and reinforce the importance of literacy. Read More

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A Collaboration with The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation

August 10th, 2015

This July, the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation and the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project hosted their second annual Institute in American History and Content Area Literacy. Click here for more information.

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NEW!! Units of Study for Teaching Reading

June 30th, 2015

School has begun and the Units of Study for Reading, K-5 are in use in reading workshops around the world! Be sure to join the TCRWP's discussion group about the Units of Study for Reading on Facebook and post your comments to Twitter #RUOS. You can post pictures, videos, comments and questions. Read more about the series here.

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Follow us on Twitter!!

June 24th, 2015

We encourage you to follow us on Twitter @TCRWP and use the hashtag #TCRWP to track tweets, updates, and comments from educators here at the Project and around the globe! Join us for special chats across the summer, too, especially the week of August 16th and 23rd for our Reading Units of Study Twitter Festival, hosted by co-authors of the new series: Units of Study for Teaching Reading, A Workshop Curriculum, Grade-by-Grade, K-5. Click Here

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Summer Institute season is here!

June 24th, 2015

Homegrown reading and writing institutes are dotting the country in school districts near and far.

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Reading Rescue™: Creating Shared Responsibility for All Our Students

June 21st, 2015

The Teachers College Reading and Writing project recently hosted the 2nd Annual Reading Rescue™ Institute. Over 200 Reading Rescue™ tutors and coordinators attended two days of workshops.

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A New Arrival

April 17th, 2015

This week Lucy wrote the final word on the final book in the new series, Units of Study in Teaching Reading. The last few books are now, in publishing language, "off the loom." The only thing that remains to be done is that page proofs are still arriving by day. We have a few days to reread each book, adding student work and making any final improvements that will make it perfect. When the last book was sent off, the Project family and Lucy especially, sent up their own imaginary fireworks.

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Congratulations!

April 16th, 2015

The TCRWP is delighted that Judy Chin, Coordinator of Strategic Development, has been elected to New York State's Board of Regents. Judy Chin is making history as the first Asian-American on the Board of Regents in its 231 years. When Judy entered Kindergarten in New York City, she did not speak English. When interviewed by New York State Legislators, Judy said that her experiences taught her, "how challenging it must be, how frightening it must be to be a young child on the first day of school in the American school system and not able to speak a word of English."

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​Content Area Literacy Institute in Williamsburg, VA

April 15th, 2015

In addition to the four summer institutes held at Teachers College and 'Homegrown' institutes held all over the country, the TCRWP will once again partner with the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation for an institute dedicated to content area literacy on-site in Colonial Williamsburg. This grant-funded institute will take place from July 21-27, 2015 and is open to teachers in New York State. Scholarships are available, and the Scholarship Application deadline has been extended to by May 13, 2015.

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March 28, 2015: The TCRWP's 88th Reunion

March 30th, 2015

On Saturday, March 28 th, almost 4,500 teachers gathered at Teachers College for the 88th Saturday Reunion. This was the largest day ever—the numbers have climbed steadily over the years. Teachers, literacy coaches and administrators came from far away places—Singapore and Spain, Chile and England—and from across the United States. Patricia Polacco was the keynote speaker at Riverside Church. Even before she spoke, she was greeted with a standing ovation and many who have heard her often said they'd never heard her speak so well.

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Liftoff to Learning: Heathcote Elementary

March 25th, 2015

Liftoff to Learning: Heathcote Elementary students apply the design-thinking process and the freedom to get creative to build their own rockets in Scarsdale, NY. Using only a few basic materials and their imaginations the students gain perspective of the design (and redesign) process through trial and error, building off of their initial experiences and re-evaluating their ideas. Watch how the students jump into action, take risks and discover a new way of learning! Click here to see for yourself!

A New Year's Letter from Lucy

December 19th, 2014

As we bring 2014 to a close, I thought I'd take a moment to share some of the TCRWP's news with the community that constitutes the Project.

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Digital and Media Literacy Institute (in Paris!)

November 19th, 2014

The Teachers College Reading and Writing Project is pleased to announce the first Digital and Media Literacy Institute. This cutting-edge institute will share the Project's latest thinking on the intersection of technology and current media with the tried and true practices of the reading and writing workshop model. Participants will leave the institute able to not only tap the power of technology in literacy instruction, but also seamlessly integrate critical reading and writing skills.

For more information please click here.

​TCRWP Featured Speaker: Grant Wiggins

October 8th, 2014

The TCRWP welcomed renowned educator, author and reformer, Grant Wiggins, to speak to an audience of school principals and classroom teachers on the topic of transfer. Wiggins is best known for the concept of “backward design” in curriculum planning.

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Donalyn Miller Teaches Important Lessons about Fostering Lifelong Readers

October 7th, 2014

Donalyn Miller, also known as the Book Whisperer, was a keynote speaker at the TCRWP August Reading Institute. She came and spoke about the importance, the research, and the ways teachers can help students become lifelong readers. So what exactly do lifelong readers do? A few very predictable things...

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We Love Writing Camp!

September 16th, 2014

“Writing Camp, a place where words really get on paper/Writing Camp, a place where stories come out sooner or later...” This reflection from a fourth grade student was written on the last day of the August 2014 Writing Camp for elementary and middle school students, facilitated by Audra Robb of TCRWP, and planned with Chappaqua school district administrators and teachers.

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The Saudi Team at TCRWP

August 11th, 2014

Among the participants at the 2014 Writing Institute were 14 master teachers and supervisors from Saudi Arabia, who came with the mission to learn to teach writing in order to pass that knowledge on to hundreds of teachers across their country. This is a video they made of their trip.

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A Protocol for Argument Work in Read Aloud

July 24th, 2014

In Mary Ehrenworth's keynote address at the Reading Institute, she suggested working on argument during read aloud. below you will find a protocol that she presented in how to engage students in this work during reading.

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Summer Institute Season is Here!

July 8th, 2014

Summer institute season is in full swing! Now that the first two Teachers College Reading and Writing Project institutes are over, participants from across the country, and across the world, have returned home, with full hearts, full minds, and certainly full notebooks!

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TCRWP Twitter Spotlight!

June 30th, 2014

Read through the #TCRWP's Twitter Guide to learn helpful ways to improve the learning in your schools and districts! Information on the Summer Chat series, the new Middle School Units of Study in Writing Twitter Festival, and TCRWP staff handles are also available!

P.S. 54 Oscar Night!

June 23rd, 2014

New York City is certainly no stranger to red carpet events, but needless to say, when PS 54, the Magnet School for Environmental Studies in Bedford Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, hosted their own black-tie affair, it was a night to remember!

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Preparing Children for the Summer Ahead

June 16th, 2014

With summer fast approaching, you are probably starting to think about ways to support your students' reading and writing development through the summer months. Many of you have read Richard Allington and Ann McGill-Franzen's article on the dangers of summer reading setback (http://www.jstor.org/stable/20440508?origin=JSTOR-pdf) and know that summer can jeopardize the strides you have made across the school year, especially for your most vulnerable students.

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Parents as Writing Partners

June 9th, 2014

A look back on Mary Ehrenworth's article in Educational Leadership, "Parents as Writing Partners." Parents are eager to support their children's writing skills. Give them a tool kit that shows them how.

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Running Records -- Powerful Assessment Tools

May 19th, 2014

As teachers conduct running records, the initial goal is often to see if readers are ready to move into the next level. While using running records to track student movement and insure that students are matched to just right books is crucial to the success of any reading workshop, perhaps the most important information provided by running records is the analysis of the student’s reading process. In turn, this analysis informs the instructional plans made for a student.

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A TCRWP Day for Classroom Tech

May 12th, 2014

Across the country, classrooms are changing. In some cases, the change is gradual, while in others, it is immediate. And yet, no matter the speed with which it is happening, change is inevitable: technology is changing the way that teachers plan and teach and the ways that students learn.

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Five Easy Tips for Increasing Volume in Writing Workshop

April 23rd, 2014

When many of us picture our ideal writing workshop classrooms, we imagine students spread about, heads bent to the task, writing utensils filling page after page of writing, perhaps with some soft music playing in the background. We imagine conferring and pulling small groups in order to teach rich strategies and to give encouragement.

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A Look Back at the TCRWP Argument Institute

April 18th, 2014

In December 2013, the TCRWP hosted its first institute on argumentation. The week was kicked off at Teachers College, beginning with words from Lucy, followed by a keynote from Doug Reeves. During initial sessions, participants learned about the Project's collaboration with the Educational Testing Service (ETS). In 2012, a group of staff developers from the TCRWP, a group of researchers from CBAL – the research arm of ETS, and a cadre of K-8 New York City classroom teachers and literacy coaches began a think tank in order to explore learning progressions in argumentation and ways to strengthen the argument writing and reading of elementary and middle school students.

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Nell K. Duke, Researcher with a Heart

April 8th, 2014

"All kids have prior knowledge. The question is, does it match what they are learning in school?"

This was just one of many memorable quotes participants jotted down as Nell K. Duke spoke to principals during their January conference at Teachers College. Duke is a professor of literacy, language, and culture at the University of Michigan. She is also the author of numerous articles and books on early literacy development, reading comprehension instruction, and informational reading and writing in the primary grades. Her research often focuses on children living in poverty and issues of equity in literacy instruction. Passionate about children and about research, Duke shared many insights about what is truly important when it comes to developing children's reading and comprehension skills.

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​86th Spring Saturday Reunion

March 25th, 2014

On March 22, 2014 teachers from near and far gathered at Teachers College for the 86th TCRWP Saturday Reunion. The day began with three different keynote speakers. Shanna Schwartz, lead staff developer for the TCRWP, showed primary teachers the power of picture books and the ways that the same books could be used and reused to teach a variety of minilessons. Colleen Cruz, lead staff developer for the TCRWP, taught about the power of popular culture and provided teachers with ideas for how popular culture could be used to teach the most challenging work we tackle with students. Diane Ravitch, esteemed historian of education, gave the keynote address in Riverside Church. Frequently referring to her latest book, Reign of Error, Ravitch spoke about the need to fight for public education, against the misuse of standardized testing, and for appropriate interpretation and use of the Common Core State Standards. Throughout these keynotes, many listeners Tweeted highlights, allowing followers to track key points made by other speakers.

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Top 5 Ways to Become a Stronger Writing Teacher: A Book Study of Writing Pathways

March 3rd, 2014

Writing Pathways: Performance Assessments and Learning Progressions, K-5, by Lucy Calkins (Heinemann, 2013) has yielded insightful conversations about writing assessments and tracking student progress across the unit and year, as well as studying trends across the grade and school. This publication has also helped educators think about their own methods as writing teachers and how we can be more effective to promote the success of young writers. Here are five ways that you can study the writing in your school alongside a book study ofWriting Pathways. T

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Five Quick Things Teachers Can Do to Increase Vocabulary Awareness

January 20th, 2014

Expanding children's vocabulary is critical to their success in school and in life. There is a connection between a wider knowledge of vocabulary and increased comprehension because the more words children know the more subtleties they understand, and the more nuanced interpretations they are able to develop. Learning words requires much more than mere exposure, it requires usage in both speaking and writing. Kids love learning and using big, fancy words, so often teachers who create literacy rich classrooms that highlight vocabulary throughout the course of the day find their students' vocabulary skills increase. Below are a few ideas that teachers can put to use easily and immediately.

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TCRWP Twitter Book Chats

January 2nd, 2014

The TCRWP has established Twitter Chats every Wednesday evening from 7:30-8:30 EST.