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San Marcos Writing Project

San Marcos Writing Project

The San Marcos Writing Project (SMWP) is one of 190 sites of the National Writing Project (17 in California), which is a professional development network of teachers whose goal is to improve student-writing achievement by improving the teaching and learning of writing in the nation's schools.

The writing project is a resource for teachers and school districts. During the school year, writing project teachers can also provide professional development workshops for other teachers in their schools and communities. We host Open Institutes around relevant topics for two weeks in the summer or two to three day workshops during the school year. We also host Young Writer's Camps for two weeks in the summer at school sites around North San Diego County for students in grades two through eight.


Contact Information

Laurie Stowell, SMWP Director 
Nancy Pace-Skinner, SMWP Co-Director 

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Preparing College Ready Writers

The San Marcos Writing Project is pleased to offer four sessions to collaborate and align the skills, knowledge and ability students need in writing to meet California ELA and ELD State standards and to make a successful transition from high school to higher education and to the world of work. High school teachers and college faculty will meet and discuss the topic of the day.


Times for all workshops:

  • 8:30 - 9:00 am - Check-in, Breakfast, and Registration
  • 9:00 - 3:00 pm - Workshop 

More details and to apply: Preparing College Writers Flier and Registration Form

Space is limited - please register soon! 

Writing Center Study Group

For: two-day workshop is for middle and high school teachers and college faculty who are interested in starting a writing center on their campus

  • Date: June 21 -22, 2019
  • Time: 9:00-3:00pm
  • Location: University Hall 444 at Cal State San Marcos

More details and RSVP:  Writing Center Study Group Flyer and Registration

The Elementary Reading and Writing Connection 2-Day Workshop Series

For: this workshop offers practical tools, strategies, and resources for nonfiction reading and
writing to use with all of your students including English learners in grades 2-6.

  • Date: June 22 & 29, 2019
  • Time: 9:00-3:00pm
  • Location:  University Hall 444 at Cal State San Marcos

 More details and RSVP:  Elementary Reading and Writing Workshop Flyer and Registration

Arts and Literacy Maker Space 3-Day Bootcamp

For: teachers (general and arts specialists), parents, future teachers, teaching artists. Focus will be elementary and middle school, but secondary welcome! 

  • Date: June 26 -28, 2019
  • Time: 8:30-3:30pm
  • Location: North County Regional Education Center (NCREC)

More details and RSVP:  Arts and Literacy Maker Space 3-Day Bootcamp Flyer and Registration


Literacy, Imagination, and Educational Makerspaces: Where Do I Begin?

With Dr. Christiane Wood

  • Date: June 27 & 28, 2019
  • Time: 9:00-3:00pm
  • Location: University Hall 444 at CSUSM

More details and RSVP:  Literacy, Imagination, and Education Makerspaces Flyer and Registration

Young Writers' Camps

College Essay Writing Seminar

Sponsored by the San Marcos Writing Project and El Camino High School

  • Date: June 24-28, 2019
  • Time: 8:30-1:00pm
  • Location: El Camino High School, Room D201

More details and RSVP:  College Essay Writing Seminar Flyer and Registration

Teen Writers' Camp

Creative Writing and/or Academic Writing For Students Entering Grades 6-10
In Partnership with Poway Unified School District

  • Date: July 29-August 2, 2019
  • Time: 8:30-1:30pm
  • Location: Oak Valley Middle School

More details and RSVP:  Teen Writer's Camp Flyer and Registration

Young Writers' Camp

Learning Literacy Through the Arts Focus For Students Entering Grades 1-6
In Partnership with Poway Unified School District

  • Date: July 29-August 2, 2019
  • Time: 9:00-12:00pm
  • Location: Highland Ranch Elementary School

More details and RSVP:  Young Writers' Camp Flyer and Registration

Summer Institute

Invitational Summer Institute 

This institute will focus on reading and writing strategies that foster the success of English learners and all learners in K-12 classrooms. Teachers will attend a five-week (four days a week) intensive institute and two half-day follow-up meetings on Saturdays during the following academic year.

  • Date: June 24 to July 25, 2019
  • Time: Monday through Thursday 8:30-4:00pm
  • Location: CSUSM

More details and RSVP:  Invitational Summer Institute at CSUSM Flyer and Registration


Additional Opportunities

An Interdisciplinary Inquiry on Teaching the Holocaust 

An opportunity for Middle and High School Writing Project Teacher Leaders to travel to Manhattan this coming summer to attend an 11-day summer institute on teaching about the Holocaust and human rights. Travel, lodging and most meals are covered and the teachers also receive a small stipend to defray other costs.

  • Date: June 16 to June 27, 2019
  • Location: New York
  • Applications Due: February 15, 2019

More details:  The 14th Annual Olga Lengyel Institute New York Summer Seminar


Additional Information & Resources