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For the past fifteen years, Stacey has worked with writers and teachers of writers, inspiring them with the power of writing workshop. Stacey began her career in education teaching fifth grade at PS 171 in East Harlem, New York, and then fourth grade at The Learning Community, a public charter school in Central Falls, Rhode Island. Stacey now works as a literacy consultant and an adjunct professor. She is also the Chief of Operations and Lead Writer for Two Writing Teachers, a popular blog about the teaching of writing.
Stacey grew up in the New York Metropolitan Area and wanted to be a writer thanks to the inspiration of her first-grade teacher, Carol Snook, who used the writing workshop approach (in 1982) long before it was popular. She thought of becoming a teacher during college, but instead worked as an assistant editor for iVillage.com and did public relations for several small cosmetics companies. "With every press release I wrote, I realized my true calling was to work with children,” she says. Stacey earned her MS Ed degree from Hunter College of the City University of New York and a master's degree in literacy from Teachers College at Columbia University.
Stacey specializes in mentor texts, conferring, and the routines of writing workshop. Her passion is helping teachers develop a writing identity. "When I was a classroom teacher, I wanted my students to live like writers. I realized my students needed to see my writing, hear my thinking about writing, and understand my struggles as a writer if I was going to have credibility when I conferred with them,” she says. Seeing as teachers are the living, breathing authors in the room, Stacey believes teachers must sit beside students, as writers, and talk about their writing process so young writers can understand why and how craft moves are made. “Some teachers I’ve worked with don’t think they’re good writers. They’re paralyzed with fear because somewhere along the way they were made to feel afraid of writing. One of my greatest joys is helping teachers overcome their discomfort with writing so they can positively impact the lives of the children they teach by becoming a mentor author for their students.”
Stacey’s first Stenhouse book, Day By Day: Refining Writing Workshop Through 180 Days of Reflective Practice, co-authored with Ruth Ayres, provides teachers with daily encouragement, practical strategies, and advice to run an effective writing workshop that meets the needs of elementary writers. Craft Moves: Lesson Sets for Teaching Writing with Mentor Texts, includes more than 180 lessons to teach various craft moves found in children’s picture books that will help K–5 students become better writers. Her latest book, Welcome to Writing Workshop: Engaging Today’s Students with a Model That Works, co-authored with Lynne Dorfman, provides readers with support to understand the fundamental elements of building and sustaining a writing workshop all year long. At the present time, Stacey is collaborating with Lynne on Jump Into Writing, which is a writing workshop curriculum for students in grades 2–5. Jump Into Writing will be available from Zaner-Bloser in the fall of 2020.
Beyond the Book
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- Conferring: The Heart of Writing Workshop
- Launching and Sustaining Writing Workshop
- Mentor Texts: Using Children’s Literature to Teach Craft
- Using Online and Social Media in Teaching Writing to Young Writers
- Nurture Writing Through Small-Group Work
- Inspire Young Writers by Being a Teacher-Writer
- The Importance of a Writer’s Notebook