2012 Words Without Walls Residency Sites:
Students from the 2011 Words Without Walls residency at Sisters Middle School
Words Without Walls provides creative writing residencies in public schools, alternative educational programs, and social welfare programs. Residencies are taught by author/instructors under the supervision of NOW's Programs Director. In 2012, NOW will offer residencies in sixteen sites and thirty-two classrooms in Deschutes, Jefferson, and Crook Counties.
Residencies are typically ten sessions long and NOW works closely with the site to structure curriculum around the site and classroom's needs. NOW's creative writing curriculum has been developed by The Nature of Words staff, applying proven principles from programs such as Literary Arts' Writers In The Schools, and rubrics established by the State of Oregon for creative writing instruction. At the conclusion of each residency, students present their work to the community. All performances are free and open to the public.
"The program has consistently demonstrated an enormous impact upon the students who participated. As a teacher, it has also provided me with a wealth of curriculum and resources to better connect with my students' writing."
-Jim Churchill-Dicks, English teacher at Crook County High School
"I became really proud of myself and amazed at how well I could write."
-Student, Sisters Academy
"The difference these workshops make in the lives of inmates and families is marked. The men who take these workshops take them very seriously and it is wonderful to see them begin to view themselves as "real writers." I firmly belive that this opportunity will help them not only learn self expression and confidence, but will contribute to helping them focus when they transition to post-prison life."
-Cody Yeager, Director of Education, Deer Ridge Correctional Institution
"I learned a wide variety of skills in prison... but none were as life altering as those I was taught by The Nature of Words! I learned through class that writing can be a blast. I learned how to take the chaotic thoughts and emotions, using them for fuel for my writing. With the advent of such an outlet for me has become not only life altering but life saving as well."
-Kenneth Oakes, former inmate, Deer Ridge Correctional Institution