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Ms. Wines’ Classroom Edit display name

  • Palm Springs High School
  • Palm Springs, CA
  • Nearly all students from low‑income households

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I’m Ms. Smith-Wines and this is my is my 17th year teaching and I am excited to embrace Project-Based Writing in my class this year and many years to follow. My project is to transform my classroom into a “not so traditional” classroom as much as possible and allow students to take risks with their writing with a public publishing each semester. This will allow students to experience why writing is so important to learn now and how it can be used in the world outside of school. The specific goal is to build a project-based writing classroom. The key to doing this is to create a happy and comfortable communal space, with a professional, grown-up vibe. As Liz Prather states in her book, Project-Based Writing, “Community is job number one" and is “the most vital component of any educational experience.” She also explains, what we all know too well, that in order for students to share ideas with peers and teachers, they need to know that their voice will be “fiercely protected from ridicule.” The learning environment needs to be controlled, yet comfortable. When all is said and done I would like my classroom to look like a studio at a writing retreat (and maybe a little like a science lab), a very untraditional-looking classroom. Envision desks and chairs, but also ottomans, floor cushions, cafe tables and lap tables around the room with students busy writing and producing work. There will also be specific areas for whole-group instruction, one-on-one conferencing, and small group writing meetings. It seems like a lot, but in actuality, it will be very simple. In order to promote sustained writing, or sustained reading for that matter, students need to feel at ease. Thank you for considering.

About my class

I’m Ms. Smith-Wines and this is my is my 17th year teaching and I am excited to embrace Project-Based Writing in my class this year and many years to follow. My project is to transform my classroom into a “not so traditional” classroom as much as possible and allow students to take risks with their writing with a public publishing each semester. This will allow students to experience why writing is so important to learn now and how it can be used in the world outside of school. The specific goal is to build a project-based writing classroom. The key to doing this is to create a happy and comfortable communal space, with a professional, grown-up vibe. As Liz Prather states in her book, Project-Based Writing, “Community is job number one" and is “the most vital component of any educational experience.” She also explains, what we all know too well, that in order for students to share ideas with peers and teachers, they need to know that their voice will be “fiercely protected from ridicule.” The learning environment needs to be controlled, yet comfortable. When all is said and done I would like my classroom to look like a studio at a writing retreat (and maybe a little like a science lab), a very untraditional-looking classroom. Envision desks and chairs, but also ottomans, floor cushions, cafe tables and lap tables around the room with students busy writing and producing work. There will also be specific areas for whole-group instruction, one-on-one conferencing, and small group writing meetings. It seems like a lot, but in actuality, it will be very simple. In order to promote sustained writing, or sustained reading for that matter, students need to feel at ease. Thank you for considering.

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