The Forest Hills Eastern High School Writing Center opened in late January of 2017, and was created out of a conversation between then senior Ben Brown and English teacher Lynn Cvengros. “It initially came out of a ‘What if?’ question,” Ben said. “What if students had a place where they could get help with their writing?” And that included him. “I wanted to learn how to write from different perspectives.”
They tapped other students with an obvious passion and talent for the written word, and Cvengros’ senior composition class took form. Students used design thinking (more peer-to-peer teaching and student-led class design, in this case) to come up with a framework for the class. Students researched, investigated, and reported on elements of writing they wanted to improve. They also created a webpage where others could sign up for appointments during lunch or after school.
Teachers share their scoring standards with Cvengros, and the class makes sure everyone knows what the expectations are for each assignment they will be helping students with. The students aren’t paper checkers, more like editors and they offer suggestions for improvement.
This month the newest senior class members took their place in the Writing Center and began helping fellow classmates. Two seniors even presented to the FHPS board of education about the Writing Center and shared how students are helping their peers become stronger writers.
The Writing Center was first covered last year by School News Network. To read more about the Writing Center on the SNN website, click here.