Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Tips for Setting Up a H.S. Writing Center

I think I have convinced my fellow English teacher in my district to work with me to organize and set up a writing center for next year. Great, right? The only problem is we're not really sure where to begin. I thought if I posted this here some of you might have some great tips. (A particular concern is how to train tutors from among the student body and how to attract tutors. We could do the tutoring ourselves--it might be easier--but everything I've read so far suggests that this is sort of missing the whole point. What do you think?) I intend to read a few books on the subject over the summer and do a lot more digging around on the internet, but any feedback or advice in the meantime would be greatly appreciated.


Amy said...

I would think that teacher recommendation would be the best way to get initial tutors, though I'm guessing you want them to work for free? Would you be able to tie this to any kind of community service requirement at your school? (I recall National Honor Society making me do volunteer work, and I believe A+ requires tutoring.)

I don't know how one would train high school tutors. When I trained here, I simply observed a few appointments, did a few supervised sessions, and then went out on my own. I could imagine, though, that you might want to help high schoolers recognize the kinds of issues that should be getting attention in a tutoring session (i.e., not spending all their time on spelling). On the other hand, the learning experience for the tutor is possibly more important than for the tutoree, and it might be worth it to give them some free rein when practical.

S00nerfan1 said...

There are several ways to develop a game plan for a writing center. You can talk with colleagues at other schools, do an on-site visit to a writing center (Use MSU's), find a blog about the subject, and their are numerous websites devoted to writing, and I'm sure some have ideas that might help you.