We're busting out of our hats with exciting programming! 826DC offers free creative and expository writing help to students year-round (it’s true, not even the U.S. Congress works as hard as we do!) through the six programs featured below. Writers ages 6-18 and their teachers can access our offerings and enter into a publishing opportunity unlike any other, in which student voices come first every time. And did we mention that all of our programs are free?


Student Publishing

While every aspect of our programming promotes student voices, no program does so quite like our flagship publishing program: the Young Authors’ Book Project. YABP includes students in every aspect of writing, editing, and publishing from the rough pages of drafting to the polished pages of a professionally published product. Past partners have included Capital City Public Charter School and DC’s 2016 Teacher of the Year Topher Kandik of the SEED School of Washington.

After-school Tutoring

Mondays through Thursdays can be rough thanks to all the homework that comes with the daily academic grind. From 3:30-6:00pm, though…POOF! The work gets done during our two-hour Monday-Thursday volunteer-supported homework help sessions, complete with a half hour of creative writing.

To register or add your name to the student waitlist, contact Emily.

Note: After-School Tutoring is currently only accepting applications from DC-based families whose students receive free or reduced lunch or self-identify as English Language Learners.

Field Trips

In these two-hour, action-packed, teamwork-centered, Common-Core-ticking, publishing-focused writing sessions, DC-based students and teachers participate in the writing process from brainstorming to holding a freshly bound book.

Field Trips are available to DC-based schools Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays from 10am-12pm. 826DC’s Field Trips are entirely free for Title 1 schools. Other schools may request Field Trips and are charged on a sliding scale, but in adherence with our mission, partnerships with Title 1 schools take priority. Unfortunately, we cannot provide transportation. If you’d like to join us for a Field Trip, contact Crys.

Field Trips to 826DC are an astounding experience for all!

Storytelling & Bookmaking

Available in English & Spanish, Grades 1-4

Putting the basic concepts of a story to practice, young writers will drum up characters, setting, and plot unlike any they’ve read before in this fast-paced exercise. No two books will be the same, either, as students individually write their own endings after collectively writing a story to its natural pause-point: the cliffhanger.

Choose Your Own Adventure

Grades 4-7

The analog proto-video game of your literary dreams! Young writers work collectively to create stories centered on consequences, adventure, present tense, and second-person narration. It’s group writing on a whole other level.

Love and Madness: Sonnets & Blazons

Grades 7-10

Who said literary analysis only happens at the college level? Students will compare the sonnets of Shakespeare and blazons of Spenser then rip ‘em up and start again with their own interpretations. It’s close reading meets form imitation in 14-16 lines (but no fewer).

Love and Madness: Romeo & Juliet

Grades 7-10

Whether it’s Zeffirelli or Luhrman, the story of Romeo & Juliet grabs us. In this activity, students will see just how adaptable Shakespeare’s classic is and, after careful examination of examples, will try their hand at the star cross’d lovers’ tale.

Writing Workshops

Know a young writer just bursting with ideas? Want to give the reluctant reader a way into new worlds? Join us for any one of our wonderful Saturday or Evening Writing Workshops where, in two hours, young writers will explore a new topic and leave with a piece of writing of which they can be proud.

Read more and register for upcoming workshops:

Reading All-stars

826DC’s Saturday literacy program, Reading All-Stars, provides DC Public School students with individualized, one-on-one literacy mentorship and enrichment at their school. Volunteer mentors and students build writing and reading skills together, as well as a deeper love for the written word, all while working closely with school administrators and teachers to reinforce and build on classroom learning. Plus, the kids get lots of stickers!

Saturday literacy programs are co-led by a dedicated team of volunteers and supported by committed volunteer mentors.

Our 2015-2016 Saturday literacy program partner school is Harriet Tubman Elementary School.



826DC offers support to teachers in the K-12 classroom though this program, one of our most flexible and teacher-driven. Teachers can choose a curriculum delivery model or for 826DC small group/one-on-one support. In-Schools can range from one class period to multi-week sessions.

See Examples of Student Writing

For examples of the work we’ve done in the classroom, check out the student writing gallery.

Student Writing Gallery

How much does it cost?

The program is 100% free to schools, teachers, and students.

What have you been up to recently?

Editing and Publishing
826DC joined five classrooms of 11th grade students to work in small groups on revisions for a personal memoir project around food writing over the course of two days. 826DC then worked remotely with the students via Google Docs to proofread and copyedit their work. Finally, 826DC designed and published a collection of the students’ writing and corresponding recipes.

Poetry Writing Workshop
During National Poetry Month in April, 826DC led a poetry writing workshop for a group of 9th-12th graders, focusing on a reading and discussing a poem and guiding the students through writing poetic responses to the work. Students’ poems were subsequently submitted for publication consideration on the Poetry Foundation’s website.

Group Storytelling
826DC led a storytelling writing workshop with 1st-3rd graders. We introduced the students to the basics of any narrative (protagonist/hero, antagonist/villain, plot, setting, characters, and dialogue), and then guided the students through writing the story as a group. The students then wrote their own individual endings to the story and illustrated the pages themselves. Each student received a bound copy of the book to keep.

Realistic Fiction
Over three days, 826DC led a lesson with 7th graders to build their “show, don’t tell” descriptive language skills.

LoNoMeMo (Local Novel Mentoring Month)
826DC volunteers served as mentors for high school students who (frantically) wrote 50,000 word novels within the span of a month.

How can I get involved?

If you’re interested in hosting 826DC in your classroom, the first step is to fill out the Teacher Interest Form. We ask for a minimum of four weeks advance notice for most In-School Writing, Editing, and Publishing partnerships.

Teacher Interest Form

I must know more!

If you have questions about our In-Schools Writing, Editing, and Publishing program, please reach out to our Programs Director.

In-Schools Writing, Editing, and Publishing Questions

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