WriteBoston Case Studies: Coaching Transforms Student Writing


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WriteBoston recently published two valuable new case studies on the impact of offering writing coaching to teachers.

WriteBoston promotes deep learning through writing. The organization offers training and coaching for teachers, along with writing opportunities for students, built on the premise that powerful thinking and writing are inseparable.

WriteBoston is offering Effective Writing in the Humanities Institute to all middle and high school humanities teachers looking to create a culture of writing in their classrooms. The institute will be offered July 7-11 at the Longfellow House in Cambridge.

WriteBoston School Case Studies

Boston Community Leadership Academy

English and Writing Workshop teacher Van Vuong works with students at Boston Community Leadership Academy.
English and Writing Workshop teacher Van Vuong works with students at Boston Community Leadership Academy.

At Boston Community Leadership Academy (BCLA), teachers and administrators alike credit WriteBoston with helping to transform the school’s approach to professional development.

Kelly Knopf-Goldner, a WriteBoston coach, works on-site with teachers two days a week. BCLA educators say that Ms. Knopf-Goldner, or “Ms. K-G” as she is affectionately known, has brought coherence and focus to teachers’ professional growth and classroom instruction.

Said Headmaster Brett Dickens, “Before WriteBoston, I always found professional development to be discouraging for teachers – too many presenters with no credibility and no follow-up. Now, with Kelly, the professional development is institutionalized, planned, teacher-driven, and sustained.”

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Pam Rogers, 9th grade English teacher and literacy coach, talks to a GLTS student about a writing assignment.

Greater Lawrence Technical School

Teachers at Greater Lawrence Technical School admit that they were somewhat skeptical at first about working with a WriteBoston coach. Many of them recalled frustrating past experiences with “expert consultants,” whose support was not tailored to their needs and rarely resulted in any meaningful change in their teaching practices. When Rebecca Steinitz began working with the faculty in the fall of 2011, she knew she had to deliver professional development that was relevant, customized, and actionable.

Two years later, teachers and administrators alike report that their work with WriteBoston has had a profound impact on teaching practice and on the overall culture of the school. Student writing has grown dramatically, in terms of both volume and quality. Teachers now hold students to high expectations for literacy, writing, and critical thinking, not only in English classes but increasingly in other academic subjects and in vocational classes as well.


 Share your views
  1. I guess listening is the key to tailor made courses

  2. Many personality development courses have creative writing as a part of their curriculum. This involves indulging in expressing your thoughts, feeling, and emotions in words. This process helps in understanding oneself in a better way.

  3. True teacher-leaders don’t have all the answers. Rather they view leadership as bringing in others and getting contributions from others.