Edison Student Publishers is passionate about bringing together a quality experience for all participants. It’s about technology, writing and creating, but it’s equally about relationships, community and problem-solving. We hope your family will join us on our unique adventure!
About the Program | Program Highlights | Upcoming Classes | How to Sign Up | Alternatives | Calendar | Volunteering and Snacks | Our Philosophy | About Our Advisors | Stay Informed!
About the Program
Edison Student Publishers is an extracurricular program for students at Edison Elementary, Eugene, Oregon. While engaged in publishing activities, students explore positive and powerful ways to share their interests, skills and opinions, creatively and respectfully, through drafting, collaboration, conferencing and revising. The students develop the content for each edition. Opinions expressed are those of each author and do not necessarily reflect those of the publishing program or Edison School. We invite your feedback.
- Small groups – approximately 12 students per class; mixed grade groupings; all abilities welcome.
- Student choice (and responsibility!) – Students decide what to create and we work with them to figure out how to do it.
- Diversity and collaboration – We learn to respectfully share our strengths and confidently seek help with skills and tasks we haven’t yet mastered. Working independently and together, we discover the fun and power of our diverse abilities.
- Opportunities to explore and apply advance technology tools and strategies – Word processing and editing, desktop publishing, digital photography, graphics software and hardware, digital recorders, and more
- Choosing the best tools for the job – Sometimes we download photos from an iPhone to a computer over wireless networks, other times we sketch an illustration or diagram with colored pencils before scanning it to a computer. Usually, we creatively combine both traditional and technological tools, learning that one is not better than the other.
- Authentic project-based activities – Publishing for a broad audience at school and on the web encourages students to put forth their best work, collaborate with others, and consider the impact of what they produce.
- Developmental approach – We believe that mistakes and success go hand-in-hand, that nothing has to be perfect but we should always try our best, and that determination and flexibility both matter!
- Critical thinking – As a group, we decide what might interest our audience; we solve technical and interpersonal challenges, and we make practical decisions about the tools and materials needed to complete a task.
- Multiple program formats – After school (1 1/2 hrs/week for 8 weeks), summer camp (5 half days), and non-school days (5.5 hours), each resulting in one print and online edition distributed to the Edison community.
Our classes are typically on Wednesdays from 1:15 to 2:45. The grade levels vary by class.
Look for more Edison Student Publishing classes throughout the year, possibly including special no-school day sessions. Registration usually takes place approximately 2 weeks before a class begins. Sign up for email notifications or follow us on Facebook if you’d like to receive notices when a new session opens for registration. We also announce new classes in the Edison eNews and on the bulletin board to the right of the office.
How to Sign Up
We’ll announce a new class at least one week before it begins. We have an online registration form and also post sign-up forms to the right of the Edison office. In either case, you must submit your payment and/or receive approval for a scholarship request to secure a spot in the class. If the class fills before we receive your payment and/or scholarship request, we will notify you and give you a full refund.
If you would like to be informed by email when a new class is announced, subscribe to our blog.
Can’t join our class? Consider some of the other ways students can get involved in publishing and pursue their creative interests:
- Any Edison student may submit work they’ve done outside of our program – stories, letters, artwork, comics, etc. We will publish these in the print version on a space-available basis, and will always post them on our website, edisonlightbulb.edublogs.org. Best strategy is to email me, but you may also submit stories, letters or articles online, or in my box at Edison.
- The student pages of this web site includes many tips and resources for students interested in writing, publishing, illustrating and technology. (Watch for updates to the site to make it more user-friendly!)
- The Young Writers Association is a local organization offering classes, contests, camps and inspiration for young writers!
- The local Science Factory often offers technology classes and camps, including occasional Saturday classes and “No School Day Camps.”
- If you travel, try visiting one of the growing number of “826” centers across the country. Originating at 826 Valencia in San Francisco, these store-front operations offer workshops, drop-in help and other supports to aspiring young writers, plus fantastic one-of-a-kind thematic gift shops (pirates, space, detectives and more)
- Literary Access Online – offers kids a way to publish their writing online.
- KidSpace – offers kids a place to publish their stories and artwork online.
View class schedules, snack and volunteer sign-ups, publishing dates, etc. If you’d like to volunteer or provide snack for a given week, email me, and I’ll add your name to the calendar.
Volunteering and Snacks
We need parents, grandparents, neighbors and older students to help students come up with ideas, edit their work, or make short trips around the school for breaks, photo shoots, interviews, etc. We also need a weekly snack to fuel our creative energies!
On your day, please drop off a simple, healthy snack which does not contain nuts or nut products by 1 p.m. Beverages are optional. I can provide reusable cups and bowls. Snacks need not be elaborate. You may also team up with another parent to jointly provide a snack.
Note: some students enjoy doing reports, recipes or surveys about food, drinks or recipes. You might ask if your child would like to do this on the day you provide snack.
No technical skills required! What’s most important is a compassionate, fun attitude, and the ability to help kids come up with original ideas, edit their work, set off on an interview, etc. Parents may also drop in any time to observe or volunteer; other volunteers, please contact me first! As will all 4J and Edison activities, volunteers must complete a background check for 4J, which can be found on the 4J volunteer page.
Our publishing program philosophy is to work ‘from the inside out’ – to start with the students’ own personal interests and talents, and help each of them find ways to share those things with others. At first, it’s finding ways to translate what’s in their head or what gets them excited into words, photos, drawings, graphs, puzzles, etc. As we move toward editing, we have to make sure their messages are appropriate and understandable for our K-5 family audience. Finally, we reach the layout stage , when we all have to work together to make our projects fit into a cohesive publication. In my mind, it’s a wonderful blending of the individual and the community, of creativity and cooperation.
About Our Advisors
Edison Student Publishers was created by Kirsten Haugen, an educator and former Edison parent with over 20 years experience working with educational technology. She has been offering publishing and other technology classes at Edison since 2005. For over 20 years, she has worked with teachers and students of all ages and abilities to use technology tools in effective, creative and innovative ways. She has a masters in special education. Learn more about her work at Haugen’s Tech Tips
Ellen Wischnowski has been assisting the program almost continuously since it started. She has endless patience and kindness for kids, combined with high standards and a gift for clear communication. Her two children have both contributed fabulous works to our print and blog publications.
o receive occasional emails regarding enrollment, other classes and new issues. (Please note, this online form is for you to receive updates only. It does not constitute enrolling in a class or wait list!)
You can also follow our blog by subscribing to updates via email or Facebook. (see links in the sidebar).
Leave a Reply