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Friday, April 16, 2021

Summer Teen Creative Writing Camp


CLICK HERE to Register

The third annual creative writing camp will take place July 26-30. Due to ongoing COVID-19 concerns, we are offering the camp both in-person (at NDSU) and virtually (via Zoom). We are assembling an impressive line-up of authors and artists for this summer's camp. Confirmed instructors include: 


Tom Hart (graphic memoir)  

Kao Kalia Yang (fiction) 

Brady Bergeson (screenwriting) 

Peter Fane (fantasy world building) 

Whitney Jacobson (creative nonfiction) 

Miranda Larson (writing for tv/theatre)  

Kayla Jones (identity and social justice) 

Payal Doshi (children’s books)  

Crystal Gibbins (environmental writing) 

Greg Brister (flash fiction or poetry) 

Kwaician (music) 

William Heinzen (fantasy) 

Nick Healy (fiction) 


Students attending in person will receive daily snacks and lunch. The in-person cost is $200 and the virtual option $150. Scholarships are available for anyone with financial limitations (I have attached the application). Registration costs include all materials and a camp t-shirt. Please note that lodging through NDSU is not available.


Please promote this camp to the young people in your life. Last year, we had 33 students attend the virtual camp. We are shooting for even more this year, and with your help, we will get there. Contact Jamee Larson ( for questions or more information.

Monday, March 22, 2021

2021 Summer Institute: Engaged Virtual Writing!

2021 Summer Institute/Virtual Writing


ENGL 2000 – 2 CREDITS – NDSU credit fee: $150

Instruction Mode: Zoom (online synchronous)

 Course Description:

As a site of the National Writing Project, the RRVWP Summer Institute offers participants a place to read and discuss ideas about teaching writing and using writing to teach—plus time to write. Teachers also share best teaching practices through hands-on teaching demonstrations and explore the teaching of writing by writing. Readings cover best practices for remote/online learning, how to align K-12 teaching with writing for college, and resources from the National Writing Project’s C3WP (College, Career, Community Writing Program). 

Reflecting these course readings, this course will focus on:

  1. “Engaged Virtual Learning” and “Techniques in Online Teaching,” enhancing K-College teaching and student learning within remote, in-person, and/or hybrid learning environments. Co-author of our course text and expert in digital literacy, Troy Hicks, is invited as guest participant in our book discussion.
  2. The long road to writing in college and careers: what do college faculty want from students, and how can the work we do from K-College maintain a clear trajectory that meets those learning objectives?
  3. C3WP professional development tools for the teaching of evidence-based argumentative writing and the improved assessment of student work to determine instructional next steps.

 Course Schedule:

  • Friday, May 14 {5:15 - 6:45 p.m.}
  • Saturday, May 15 {9:00 - 11:30 a.m.}
  • Monday - Thursday, June 14 - 17 {8:45 a.m. - 12:00 Noon}
  • Monday - Thursday, June 21 - 24 {8:45 a.m. - 12:00 Noon}


Participants will:

  • grow in the understanding of teaching and learning writing through engaging in their own writing practice, reading current research and theory, reflecting upon their own writing processes and workshop experiences, and learning from other experienced teachers. 
  • demonstrate growth in giving response to writers by modeling responses in class and by describing appropriate classroom strategies.
  • become familiar with a wide range of print and on-line materials for teacher development and instructional use, including the resources of the National Writing Project Network.
  • develop leadership capacity in teaching writing and using writing to help students learn.
  • create their own teaching demonstrations (after seeing teaching demonstrations by Red River Valley Writing Project teacher consultants) which will be aligned with and exceed the Common Core State Standards.  
  • learn and apply the current best practices for teaching and engaging students in an in-person, remote, and/or hybrid learning environment.

 Texts & Readings:

  • Create, Compose, Connect! Reading, Writing, and Learning with Digital Tools by Jeremy Hyler & Troy Hicks
  • Writing Analytically (8th edition) by David Rosenwasser & Jill Stephen

Recommended C3WP readings: 

  • Teaching Argument by Jennifer Fletcher
  • Transforming Talk into Text by Thomas McCann
  • Rewriting: How to Do Things with Texts by Joseph Harris

 About The Instructor:

Benjamin Melby received his ABD & Masters in English Language & Literature from Indiana University in 2007/2006 and earned his Bachelors in English & German Language & Literature from University of Minnesota in 2002. Benjamin teaches a variety of first-year and upper-division writing courses at NDSU. His teaching focuses on topics such as the environment and our sense of place, the effects of technology, and racial justice. He currently is the Interim Director for the Red River Valley Writing Project.




Special Instructions:

This class is funded through the North Dakota Governor’s Emergency Education Relief (GEER) grant.

**Registration Instructions:

Summer registrations begin March 1, 2021.  URL will close May 12th @ 5:00 p.m.



Friday, March 12, 2021

Scholastic Art & Writing Awards: Virtual Ceremony


Virtual Awards Ceremony
Saturday, March 13, 5:30 – 8 PM 

Zoom Link:

Passcode: 639673

The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards Ceremony is the centerpiece of North Dakota’s Scholastic Art & Writing program, recognizing the vital role that arts education plays in cultivating more creative and thoughtful students. During the virtual ceremony we will announce the state’s winners of the literary and visual art competition, whose works are on display at the Plains Art Museum’s Starion Bank Gallery. 

Come join us at the virtual ceremony and be inspired by the award winners, readings, interviews, video footage of the exhibit, and keynote speaker Maria Modi.

Hosted by Plains Art Museum, NDSU, and the Red River Valley Writing Project.