From FAPE, to FERPA, to ESSA and PBIS, the field of education is filled with acronyms. But more recently, a new acronym has been making the rounds this time of year: NaNoWriMo.
You might be thinking: NaNo-what-mo? But have no fear, we at PDE are here to help explain.
NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month, celebrated every November around the world. At the beginning of the month, aspiring novelists put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboards) with the goal of creating a new 50,000-word novel. As the NaNoWriMo organization puts it, these individuals “enter the month as elementary school teachers, mechanics, or stay-at-home parents. They leave novelists.”
Last year, 427,653 writers participated in the program, including 90,561 students and educators in the Young Writers Program.
The Young Writers Program encourages students of all ages to write their own story with assistance from their teacher. Educators can access student workbooks, Common Core-aligned lesson plans, and a free classroom kit to use before, during, and after November. Young writers don’t need to hit 50,000 words, they can set their own word count that can be changed over time. For example, 2nd graders can aim for between 100-500 words, while 10th graders should aim for between 10,000-25,000 words.
Also last year, 406 libraries, bookstores, and community centers opened their doors to novelists through the Come Write In program. Come Write In encourages libraries, bookstores, and community centers to engage with aspiring writers through resources, support, and virtual events to share with patrons.
We all know the benefits of reading, but there are many intellectual, physiological, and emotional benefits to writing as well. They include: improved memory function, decreased symptomatology, and greater feelings of happiness.
This NaNoWriMo, whether you’re creating a memoir, a fantasy novel about dragons, a romance, or a who-done-it style thriller, a new world of imagination awaits you.
What will you write about?