Talking about the Young Authors’ Book Project

Last week, we joined forces with the DC Charter School Alliance and one of our teacher partners from Bridges PCS to talk about the Young Authors’ Book Project (YABP), one of 826DC’s free writing programs!

Andrea Nelson, 826DC’s Director of Education, spoke with Bridges PCS teacher Susan Molholm and with Anne Herr, Director of Policy and Programs at the DC Charter School Alliance.

A Project with Purpose

“Our vision is that young people develop a lasting and positive relationship with writing,” said Andrea, “such that they develop the confidence and skills to be able to use that however they need, however they see fit, to live up to their own chosen fullest potential.”

YABP is one way through which we help young people do just that. Supported by 826DC staff, volunteers, and guest teaching artists, the students experience and steer the creation of a professionally-bound book. It’s a powerful experience that sees the students emerge at the end of the school year as published authors, books in hand.

Supporting Students—and Teachers

The conversation also highlighted how impactful it can be for schools to partner with community organizations like 826DC for project-based learning opportunities like YABP.

Susan’s fourth grade Bridges PCS students were part of this year’s YABP cohort. We worked with the students on “Sometimes I Have to be Brave.” It’s an anthology all about community and the people, places, and memories that make their communities so special.

“I felt it was a great opportunity to connect and extend our ELA and social studies curriculum,” said Susan. Indeed, she continued, “I could see a lot of improvement by the end of the year.”

One of the developments that she noticed?

Two of the students from Susan’s class got so excited about the writing we were doing about community activists, she said, they decided to spend a weekend working on a piece together all about Susan B. Anthony—just for fun.


You can read more excerpts from the discussion here.

You can also watch the full recording here.