WITS Writers-in-Residence

Writers in the Schools (WITS), a program of Seattle Arts & Lectures, is looking for creative writers—poets, fiction writers, creative nonfiction writers, and cartoonists/graphic novelists—who are passionate about teaching the power and pleasure of writing to young people, elementary through high school aged, and who are excited to collaborate with public school teachers to create environments that foster a sense of inquiry, creativity, and inclusion.

WITS does the majority of our hiring and placements during the summer and early fall, but accept inquiries throughout the year. School placements vary and may be either weekly throughout the school-year, or take place over a shorter window of time, as a multi-day per week intensive.

♦ Prepare and circulate to teachers and WITS staff a syllabus incorporating reading selections and writing prompts, taking into account your classroom teacher’s desired learning outcomes and curriculum
♦ Guide students to write through exciting and innovative creative writing lessons
♦ Provide regular written feedback to your students on their writing
♦ Attend a half-day writer retreat in September
♦ Attend writer meetings (5-6 over the course of the year)
♦ Attend a residency planning meeting with WITS staff and classroom teacher(s) at the beginning of each residency
♦ Be observed by WITS staff throughout the year, and participate in one-on-one debrief sessions
♦ Collect excellent student work and permissions throughout the year and submit it to WITS staff on deadline for displays, online and print publication, etc.
♦ Coordinate end-of-semester/trimester culminating events for your classes
♦ Choose and prepare students to read at the annual student readings in May
♦ Contribute to the WITS blog
♦ Complete an annual self-evaluation and review with WITS staff

Required Qualifications:
♦ One to two years of teaching or mentoring experience with elementary, middle, or high school students
♦ Desire, ability, and flexibility to collaborate with public school teachers
♦ Excellent written and oral communication skills
♦ Outstanding organizational skills and attention to detail
♦ Established record of publications and/or performances
♦ Availability to complete every session of a scheduled residency—either throughout the academic year (October through June), or in an intensive multi day per week setting— schedules vary by school

Desired Qualifications:
♦ Writers experienced with diverse populations, English Language Learners, and/or Special Education students
♦ Bilingual writers
♦ Asset-based, social justice framework to working with all students

♦ Compensation for a full-residency of 84 teaching hours starts at $78/teaching hour (rate assumes outside of class time spent on preparation and feedback and is paid in monthly installments. Partial or greater residencies are scaled accordingly).
♦ Free tickets to Seattle Arts & Lectures events
♦ Professional development training and inspiring colleagues

How to Apply:
Send the following via email to wits@lectures.org:

♦ Cover letter
♦ A resume indicating significant teaching and writing experience
♦ Names, phone numbers, and email addresses for three references, at least one of whom should be familiar with your teaching
♦ Three- to five-page creative writing sample in the genre you most like to teach
♦ One page describing three specific writing goals you would have for a WITS residency, and why these goals feel essential to you
♦ Two specific teaching exercises/lesson plans you would use to help students achieve those goals. Please identify if the exercises are intended for elementary, middle, or high school students.

Note: Please save all materials as one pdf document, and label: Firstname.Lastname_WITS2019-20application. Include: “WITS 2019-20 Application” as the email subject line.

Due Date: August 16th, 2019 by noon.

People of color and bilingual applicants are especially encouraged to apply. Writers selected for interviews will be contacted in late August.