Professional Development

Professional Development Opportunity for Georgia Teachers

"Literacy expectations are likely to accelerate in the coming decades. To participate fully in society and the workplace in 2020, citizens will need powerful literacy abilities that until now have been achieved by only a small percentage of the population." (NCTE)

The Kennesaw Mountain Writing Project is committed to serving the professional development needs of educators from all grade levels and in all instructional settings, kindergarten through university. KMWP programs are grounded in research-based practices and aligned with national and state standards for literacy learning. Our programs promote reflective practice among all teachers and academic success for all learners. We enhance teacher leadership to prepare all students for productive citizenship.

The distinguishing characteristics of the KMWP professional development program include:

two teachers talkingTeachers teaching teachers

  • Delivery through a variety of models
    • Workshops
    • Multi-session courses
    • Small-team study groups
    • Sustained Inquiry
  • Collaboration with individual schools and/or districts to create professional development targeting specific site-based and instructional needs

We Offer:

  • School Workshop Series
    For example, Teacher Consultants worked at a local elementary school to guide study of writing strategies and to support creation of a school-wide writing program.
  • Evening & Weekend Seminars
    For example, Teacher Consultants facilitated colleagues trying out new technologies for teaching writing.
  • Summer Programs for Schools/Districts
    For example, in a growing Atlanta area school system, Teacher Consultants worked with K-12 educators in a week-long summer institute aimed at improving instruction in reading and writing, while supporting participants’ own growth as readers and writers.
  • District-Wide Partnership
    For example, KMWP collaborated with a metro-Atlanta school district to facilitate The Writer’s Guild, a team of teachers who developed and field tested interdisciplinary lessons aligned with rubrics and sample student work. The collection, created by district K-8 teachers and KMWP Teacher Consultants over a 15-month period, produced standards-based models for the district website.

To discuss professional development for your needs, contact: Dr. Jennifer Dail,

  • Professional Development Presentations

    The presentations below are examples of professional development that was tailored to the needs of specific schools and districts. Contact KMWP if you are interested in developing learning opportunities for your teachers facilitated by Writing Project fellows. E-mail Dr. Jennifer Dail at

    Culturally Relevant and Sustaining Pedagogy

    Devereaux, Michelle. (June, 2013). Culturally Relevant Pedagogy: What Is It and How Do I Use It? Area Two (Cobb County) KMWP Summer Institute. This session detailed what Culturally Relevant Pedagogy is and offered ideas for implementing this pedagogy in the classroom.

    Devereaux, Michelle. (April, 2013). Culturally Relevant Pedagogy: What Is It and How Do I Use It? Campbell High School Professional Development, Literacy Team. This session detailed what Culturally Relevant Pedagogy is and offered ideas for implementing this pedagogy in the classroom. Additionally, this session explored language variation in the classroom and how to support the movement from student discourse to writing.

    Devereaux, Michelle. (January, 2013). Culturally Responsive Pedagogy and Writing. Rome RESA Professional Development. This session detailed what Culturally Relevant Pedagogy is and offered ideas for implementing this pedagogy in the classroom. Additionally, this session explored language variation in the classroom and strategies for using language differences as an instructional beginning.

    Devereaux, Michelle. (August, 2012). Culturally Relevant Pedagogy in Our Classrooms. KMWP Summer Institute. This session detailed what Culturally Relevant Pedagogy is and offered ideas for implementing this pedagogy in the classroom.

    Language Varieties and Classroom Discourse

    Devereaux, Michelle (August, 2013) Code-Switching and Contrastive Analysis: Using Students Strengths to Build Bridges. Campbell High School. This session covered the form and function of non-Standard American dialects. It detailed applicable strategies designed to respect the dialects students come to class with while offering them access to Standard English.

    Literacy Across Content Areas

    Huie, Mary Lynn. (July, 2013). Getting Technical about Literacy: Embedding the Common Core Literacy Standards in the Technical Education Curriculum. GACTE (Georgia Association of Career Technical Education).

    Huie, Mary Lynn. (May, 2013). Literacy Design Collaborative Training for Curriculum Specialists and Literacy Coaches. GACIS (Georgia Association of Curriculum and Instruction Specialists).

    Huie, Mary Lynn. (July, 2013). New Literacy and Math Standards: Implications for Teaching and Learning. SREB Networking Conference on Common Core, Charlotte, NC.

    Huie, Mary Lynn. (March 2013). Literacy Design Collaborative: Tools for the Common Core. GASSP (Georgia Association of Secondary School Principals).

    Reading Instruction

    Woodall, Maya. (Spring, 2013). Close Reading without Compromise. KMWP Literacy Conference. Teacher participants were guided through the close reading strategies of Beers and Probst’s Notice and Note. Teachers participated in a guided lesson of this strategy to help them learn how to help students notice and note the reoccurring text features/signposts and facilitate closer reading and analysis.

    Visual/Multimodal Comprehension and Composition

    Crovitz, Darren. (2013). “Weigh the meaning and look not on the words”: Inference and Argument in Visual Texts. Cobb County School District: Three 60-minute workshops dealing with the potential of Norman Rockwell’s painting as complex texts in the classroom.

    Crovitz, Darren. (June 2013). Imagining the Impact of Images. Cobb County Area 2 Summer Institute. 90-minute workshop for teacher participants on visual scenario-based teaching possibilities.

    Crovitz, Darren. (August 2012). Scenario-Based Activities and Critical Thinking. Kennesaw Mountain Writing Project workshop, Cobb County School District. Three 60-minute workshops for teacher participants on visual scenario-based teaching possibilities.

    Vocabulary Instruction

    Crovitz, Darren. (May 2013). Approaches to Vocabulary Instruction. Campbell High School. 90-minute workshop for 20 teacher leaders on strategies for vocabulary development.

    Crovitz, Darren. (January 2013). Source-Based Vocabulary Development. Rome Educational Service Agency. Two 75-minute workshops for 20 teachers on strategies for vocabulary development.

    Writing Instruction

    Devereaux, Michelle (July, 2013). Power, Society, and Identity: Keys to Tactful Writing. Youth Writing Academy, Campbell High School. In this session students learned how an awareness of power, society, and identity can strengthen their writing.

    Devereaux, Michelle (January, 2013). You Have to Talk the Talk Before You Write: Using Discussion as a Bridge to Writing. Rome RESA Professional Development. This session detailed a variety of discussion strategies and explored how to help move students from discourse to writing.

    Drew, Kitty, & Mary Ann Stillerman. Write with a Camera: Capture Images and Convey Ideas through Cinematic Writing. Tap into your students’ interest and familiarity with visual media and show them how to write with a cinematic lens. Use strategies in a writer’s workshop mini-lesson, make them available in an anchor writing activity, or incorporate them into an interdisciplinary unit.

    Rish, Ryan. (August, 2013). Developing rhetorical dexterity with argumentation. Cobb County Professional Development Day. In this presentation, Ryan led English teachers in considering the role of warrant in argumentation within and across disciplines/subject areas. Argumentation is considered not as an autonomous skill, but rather as a situated literacy practice within a particular social and/or disciplinary domain.

  • KMWP has a history of publishing work related to the writing project. Below is a list of publications written and/or edited by members of KMWP.


    Teachers’ Writing Groups: Collaborative Inquiry and Reflection for Professional Growth

    Edited by Sarah Robbins, George Seaman, Kathleen Blake Yancey and Dede Yow (2006)

    How can teachers — in whatever setting they work — effectively facilitate their own professional development through collaborative writing and reflection? Teachers’ Writing Groups addresses this question by focusing on a community of educators that uses social writing as a vehicle for learning. This book delves into questions about writing, reflection, and professional development as an interactive social process.

    Writing Our Communities: Local Learning and Public Culture

    Edited by Dave Winter and Sarah Robbins (2005)

    Emphasizing student inquiry and writing, this rich collection offers teachers ready-to-use classroom resources with a sound basis in best practice. Student engagement with community becomes the centerpiece of the book, an engagement that takes place across disciplines through projects involving history, environment, culture and more. These lively, classroom-tested lessons are easily adapted to different teaching levels and settings. The book also effectively addresses curricular guidelines specific to local, regional and state settings, as well as to national standards.

    Whether you’re searching for brief exercises to introduce community studies in the classroom or for extended units, this book is a rich resource for your classroom, helping your students write about their communities while exploring, re-creating, discovering or rediscovering, reclaiming, preserving, and building these communities. NCTE and the National Writing Project.

    Writing America: Classroom Literacy and Public Engagement

    Edited by Sarah Robbins and Mimi Dyer, foreword by Paul Lauter (2004)

    This book tells the story of how Georgia-based National Writing Project teachers and their students used the study of communities to build their own community — one committed to the stewardship of communal spaces and ideas. The book details the students’ inquiry-based studies of topics as diverse as the area’s Cherokee heritage and the redevelopment of Atlanta. Readers will be inspired to help their own students create engaging projects that take literacy from an isolated skill to a socially relevant enterprise. Teachers College Press and the National Writing Project.

    More information about NWP publications.