To be successful in a world where communication happens at unprecedented speeds and volumes, students must be able to express their ideas effectively. To that end, The Oakridge School launched a campus-wide writing initiative to tackle important questions:
- How do we encourage students to write more?
- How can we align the K-12 writing curriculum to better maximize student potential?
- What are we doing to prepare students to be effective communicators, both for college and the competitive job market?
- How can we make writing meaningful and relevant for each individual learner?
After further exploration and professional development workshops, Oakridge is starting to see changes in writing instruction on campus. Lower School teachers have implemented a new curriculum for teaching narrative and expository writing called Empowering Writers, and in recent years, the Middle School has added two courses to their curriculum: 5th Grade Fundamental Writing and 9th Grade Advanced Writing.
In both the Middle and Upper Schools, faculty are implementing a writing program whose reach expands across the curricula and beyond the walls of the English classroom. To do this, they have adopted some of the principles and concepts of the Jane Schaffer writing program, an academic writing system for students and teachers, to make terminology more consistent and goals more clearly stated. Students develop knowledge and mastery of genre, rhetoric, and purpose while connecting to real-world audiences in the process.