Author Melissa Heaton teaches at Mapleton Junior High School. Among other things, Melissa helps organize regular Walk and Writes for the CUWP fellows. Below, you can catch a glimpse of her getting ready to chow down at Gurus after a Walk and Write in Downtown Provo.
Wait! Don’t let the term Walk and Write conjure up fears of multi-tasking failures. You don’t have to be a multi-tasking aficionado to participate. Just put on your walking shoes. Grab a pen and some paper. Then, walk outside and write with other educators who are as passionate about writing and teaching as you. You will be surprised how efficiently you can walk and write–and even chew gum at the same time.
Walk and Writes are a tradition of the CUWP. Writing fellows gather outside in small groups and explore their surroundings. Then, they write and share. Walk and Writes are one of the highlights of the Summer Institute. Also, two Walk and Writes are scheduled in October and April for all writing fellows.
Walk and Writes focus on a primary goal of the CUWP: help teachers write and share their writing. Every time I participate in a Walk and Write, I join a diverse community of supportive educators and friends. Second, I become an even better writing teacher because I’m writing. I’m doing what I ask my students to do, and I’m not so far removed from their writing realities. As I continue to write, I find that my teaching skills are strengthened, and I better understand how to help my students through the writing process. Last, I get ideas. Ideas for teaching. Ideas for writing. It’s exciting how being outside, away from a desk or classroom, can bring a flood of ideas into my head–jewels that lead to a treasure of writing.
Now that you know all about Walk and Writes, come join us. But, don’t bring any bug spray. You are destined to get bit by the writing bug no matter what you do.
If you are interested in becoming a member of the Central Utah Writing Project, we invite you to apply for our next summer institute.