What should the Western Pennsylvania Writing Project become in these times, for the sakes of educators and their young people? As our colleagues at Allied Media of Detroit asked, during a Chrysalis Year, “How do we want to grow? Is it more like an oak tree, like mushrooms, like moss?” What seems most fruitful, given current conditions?
It’s time for us to slow down, gather ourselves, and reflect: What should we become—as a community of learning, as a network of engaged educators, as believers in a vision of “Beloved Community”? Thus, we intend to form a Chrysalis team—a core group of WPWP teacher-consultants over the years—who will reflect and study our accomplishments, our context, conditions, and possibilities.
The Western Pennsylvania Writing Project will continue to offer a variety of events, workshops, gatherings, and youth programs during the Chrysalis Summer of 2022—some face-to-face, some online, some hybrid. These will be open to interested folks from previous years and newcomers who would like to get connected with our network. We will pause our Invitational Summer Institute for Teachers for 2022, but plan to resume that program in 2023.
Very soon, we will post a Google site with links to a calendar of summer events. If you are interested in being part of the Chrysalis team, please contact Laura Roop at email@example.com
New Summer 2021 study group on The Mindful Writing Workshop: Teaching in the Age of Stress and Trauma, facilitated by Dr. Richard Koch, and sponsored by the National Writing Project.
Four hour-long sessions aimed at creating a community of educators focused on restoration and healing in the classroom. The sessions are scheduled on Wednesday afternoons in July: July 7, July 14, July 21, and July 21 at 3:00 ET.
For more information see this page:
Congratulations to the 2022 National Medalists! These students are invited to a National Ceremony in New York City in June. Please check your student Scholastic account for important information.
Pittsburgh CAPA School
Shelley Demus, 12th grade: Gold Medal | American Voices Medal | Best-in-Grade Award for Poetry. Title: blk
Elena Eiss, 10th grade: Silver Medal for Dramatic Script. Title: This Story
Josephine Reiter, 12th grade: Silver Medal for Poetry. Title: A Girl’s Guide to Falling from Grace
Amelia Staresinic, 11th grade: Silver Medal for Poetry. Title: A Family Tree
Mathilda Turich, 9th grade: Silver Medal for Journalism. Title: New Pronouns, New Problems
Fox Chapel High School
Anna Ferris, 12th grade: Silver Medal for Short Story. Title: The Last Line of Defense
North Allegheny High School
Sophie Lu, 12th grade: Silver Medal for Critical Essay. Title: Why Texas’ Heartbeat Bill is a Step Backward for our Democracy
Silver Medal for Personal Essay / Memoir. Title: A Tale of Pride and Prejudice
Katherine Peng, 11th grade: Gold Medal for Critical Essay. Title: A Perfect Model: The Effects of Stereotypes on the Asian-American Population
Samantha Podnar, 12th grade: Gold Medal | Civic Expression Award for Critical Essay. Title: “What They Want is To Destroy Us”: The Rampant, Undercover Fear Driving Anti-Mask Protests
Maya Sivakumar, 11th grade: Gold Medal for Short Story. Title: The Corner Store
Penn Trafford High School
Delena Steimer, 11th grade: Silver Medal for Poetry. Title: Post-Apocalypse
Oakland Catholic High School
Janise Zenmon, 12th grade: Silver Medal for Poetry. Title: My Life Time
Shady Side Academy Senior High School
Hannah Song, 11th grade: Gold Medal for Personal Essay / Memoir. Title: Pink Ribbons
Anker Zhao, 12th grade: Gold Medal for Journalism. Title: National Security versus Individual
Felix Gamper, 10th grade: Silver Medal for Personal Essay / Memoir. Title: Berg to Burg: The Local Impact of Climate Change
Go to our Pittsburgh Region Scholastic Google Site to see the winners–just scroll down and click on the link to the spreadsheet:
Age and Grade Requirements: Students ages 13 – 18 in grades 7 – 12 are eligible.
Writing Categories: For information on writing categories:
How to enter:
Students choose pieces they’ve written that fit within Scholastic categories.
Students create accounts in ORS (Online Registration System), including updating their grade every year: https://www.artandwriting.org/awards/how-to-enter.
Students upload their entry (entries) through their student account. Please note: As soon as a student uploads their work, they are entered in the Awards. A confirmation number is not provided or required.
Work must be uploaded by midnight on the deadline: Monday, December 6th, 2021
Payment and submission forms with parent signatures can be mailed after the upload deadline. Please see Entry Fee and Mailing Payment section below.
All student entries must be anonymous. If student name(s) or other identifiable information is found on an entry, the entry could be disqualified.
There are separate art categories; see the Scholastic Art and Writing Alliance website for these:
Pittsburgh area students may enter, but the Western Pennsylvania Writing Project does not administer the art awards.
Attention, interested young people entering grades 7-12! We are again holding Young Writers Institutes during two weeks in July. The dates are as follows:
Week One: Tuesday, July 5, Wednesday, July 6, and Thursday July 7
Week Two: Monday, July 11, Tuesday, July 12, Wednesday, July 13, and Friday, July 15
Three In-Person Sessions in Oakland: Tuesday, July 5, Monday, July 11, and Friday, July 15
Synchronous sessions (2 each day) will be held online in late mornings and early afternoons on July 6, 7, 12, 13.
Cost: $125 (Scholarships available if needed)
This year, we’d like to try some carefully selected face-to-face sessions along with online sessions using Google platforms. Writing coaches will guide you through synchronous and asynchronous writing workshops, lessons, discussions, activities and inquiries. You’ll identify your own writing goals for the Institute and we’ll lead you through the writing process to accomplish them! Have you ever considered submitting to the The 12th Annual New York Times Summer Reading Contest or Scholastic Writing Awards 2023? Maybe you’ve been itching to start writing that stellar novel you’re always daydreaming about? Let’s get started!
Here is the link for registration: https://forms.gle/M2ZBBtH5f4Rc1KWR6
If you have questions or concerns, please call WPWP Director Laura Roop at (734) 474-3926 or e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org
Camp coordinators and instructors are Colleen Geiger and Carly McPartland, both of whom are finishing up their public school teaching responsibilities for 2021-22 right now:
Colleen Geiger email@example.com
Carly McPartland firstname.lastname@example.org
Attention, students, grades 5, 6, 7! Join WPWP teacher-consultants Kathy Giegel and Sasha Reese for an exceptional week exploring powerful and important ways that youth voices can create and write. They will be offering an in-person Young Writers Institute for grades 5, 6, and 7 (upcoming school year) during the week of June 20-24, 2022, 9:00 am-12:00 pm. The location is :
Atlas Art Studio
75 Shenot Road
Wexford PA. 15090
Learn more and register at:
Questions? E-mail or call Kathy Giegel:
Limited to 16 participants. (Minimum of 10 participants required for institute.) _________________________________________________________________
Here are links to the anthologies created during the last three summers of Young Writers, Grades 7-12: