CATE 2010 Convention


CATE 2010 Los Angeles Convention

James Gray Memorial Pre-Convention

Sponsored by the California Writing Project

California Writing Project logo

Improving Students' Academic Writing (ISAW):
Traveling the Road to Success

February 11, 2010 • Los Angeles, California

Do you want to empower all students to write academically, analytically, and engagingly? If yes, the California Writing Project invites you to join its statewide community of ISAW teachers, middle school through university, for a day of workshops focused on improving students' academic writing and critical reading.

Over eighteen workshops led by classroom teachers who are CWP and ISAW teacher leaders will address, but are not limited to, the following topics:

  • Accelerating the writing improvement of all students—the college-bound, English learners, those in the middle, struggling writers—and preparing more of them for college going
  • Building analytical skills—analysis of experience, observation, personal opinion, texts, and multiple texts
  • Developing text- and issue-based writing prompts and the scaffolding that individual writers need to write with confidence
  • Creating and using text sets that enlarge the classroom base for reading, provide differing perspectives on the same issue, and serve as models for the writing
  • Teaching and practicing close, critical reading strategies
  • Revising and editing for rhetorical effectiveness
  • Supporting students to examine the issues they care about in an analytical context
  • Preparing for gatekeeper, high stakes writing—from CAHSEE to college—without sacrificing student and teacher agency
  • Engaging students in challenging writing projects and lessons that connect with their cultures, communities, and aspirations
  • Making academic writing an integral part of the curriculum by focusing on improvement
  • Using embedded writing assessments that provide students, teachers, and parents information about student progress and writing quality.

ISAW is classroom tested and research supported: A current CWP study, funded by the U.S. Department of Education and the National Writing Project, is comparing the writing achievement of students whose teachers are participating in ISAW programs to that of students whose teachers are not. An independent group of readers evaluated students' improvement across eighteen dimensions of writing and found that students in ISAW classrooms outpace their comparison counterparts in all eighteen dimensions. Evaluators found the differences to be large enough to be considered statistically significant. These findings hold true for students with different racial and ethnic backgrounds, English learners, students from low socio-economic status, and males and females. For more information about ISAW link to:

Pre-convention registration includes:

  • A very special luncheon showcasing California's student winners of the Scholastic Writing Awards.
  • A wealth of curriculum resources and instructional materials
  • Time to browse and buy California and National Writing Project publications and resources.

Cost: $125 for CATE members; $165 for non-members. The Pre-convention is included in Package A, or you can choose it as an "a la carte" option. Refer to the CATE 2010 registration form or for more information.



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