Academic Support Writing Classes

District Writers' Academy’s academic writing classes are designed using an interactive, workshop-style format with a small enrollment (6-8 students). The approach is participatory with lots of hands-on exercises, games, and writing time to learn and practice skills. It reaches students who have sometimes been left behind in traditional classrooms and who learn in different ways--visual learners, auditory learners, those with ADHD.

Our courses also don't just teach kids WHAT to write. We teach them HOW to write--how to navigate the (sometimes difficult) process of writing, As writers ourselves, we know how hard writing can be and offer them pragmatic strategies to overcome writers' block, perfectionism, confusion--things every writer deals with. No more tears, drama, avoidance!

Because we encourage students to take risks, our classes do not assign grades. We do, however, provide abundant guidance and feedback to encourage and support progress.

Our students generally start seeing classroom grades improve within weeks and often feel confident enough to pursue their writing independently within 6-12 months. Our job is to teach ourselves out of a job!

Unless otherwise noted, all of our academic workshops are offered at  the Jr. (7th-9th grade) or the Sr. (10th-12th grade) level. Please contact us if you have questions about the appropriate placement for your child.

Features of our Academic Writing Classes

    • Small size--maximum enrollment of six or eight
    • Interactive methodology
    • Lots of hands-on writing time
    • Non-graded, with copious feedback
    • Instruction in writing process (how to write effectively and efficiently)
    • Basic and more advanced writing and language arts training
    • Custom-design a course for your student(s)

We can custom-design and custom-schedule any of our classes for specific students. Please contact us if you would like to discuss this possibility.


Fundamentals of Academic Writing (Sr Level)

Classroom Hours: 15
Price: $520 (Includes course handbook)

Session I:  Monday Dec 26-Friday Dec 30, 2-5 p.m. (December Break)

Finish the academic year strong with this winter-break workshop, which teaches the basic skills for writing an academic essay (prewriting, thesis statements, organization, specificity, paragraph development, research, transitions). Our interactive, workshop-style method creates a fun and safe space for teens to improve their writing in a small group setting (limited to six students). All students receive a comprehensive course handbook with resources they can use well after the course ends. 

Enrollment for this course is capped at 6 students per session.

This course is designed for high school sophomores, juniors and seniors.

Course meets virtually, on Zoom.

College Essay for the Win

Classroom Hours: 6
Price: $240


Session I– Fall Break Session: October 8-10, Sat/Sun/Mon; 3 p.m.-5 p.m.
Session II– Tuesdays October 11, 18 & 25, 5-7 pm.

The College Common App essay incorporates many principles of good writing—effective introductions, story-telling, compressing and expanding narrative, and writing with vivid detail. This class teaches these skills and gives students an opportunity to practice them as they work toward writing that perfect college essay. Students develop a rough draft and some solid writing skills they can use for a lifetime.
Enrollment for this course is capped at 6 students per session.

Brainstorm Your College Essay

Classroom Hours: 1
Price: $30

Session I– Wednesday, October 5, 5-6 p.m.
Session II-Thursday October 6, 6-7 p.m.


This one-hour workshop will introduce students to the college Common App essay questions, provide successful essay models, and give students specific writing prompts for identifying their own unique topic, as well as a chance to experiment and test drive a few topics. Students will leave the workshop with at least one good topic to explore and will receive a free takeaway packet with prompts, examples, and our own home-grown tips and resources for writing the essay. We all know starting is the hardest part, so that’s what this workshop is designed to do—break the ice. Please note: Although most of our writing classes are capped at 6 students, this class will accommodate up to 12, as it is a fast-paced workshop that benefits from more energy and input.

Enrollment for this course is capped at 12 students per session.

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Creative Writing Sr. Level

Classroom Hours: 6
Price: $240

Session I– Wednesdays October 12 -November 16  (Six weeks) 5-6 p.m.


 If you have a student who likes to read, who dreams about writing, who scribbles songs and poetry in a notebook—this is the class for them! Using exercises and games in a creative workshop setting, we will teach elements of writing stories, poetry and creative nonfiction, while encouraging students to explore and have fun with language. Although this is a creative writing class, the skills learned (sentence structure, description, precision and creativity of word choice) will help make students better and more confident writers overall. It’s a win-win for your creative student! Offered at the Jr. (7-9 Grade) and Senior (10-12 Grade) levels.
Enrollment for this course is capped at 6 students per session.
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Learn to Love Writing (Or at Least Not Hate It)

Classroom hours: 3
Price: $125

Session I (Sr. Level)— Nov 14, 21, 28, 5-6 p.m.
Session II (Sr. Level)—Thanksgiving Break Session: Nov 25-27, Fri/Sat/Sun, 4-5 p.m.


If you have a student who is resistant to writing, this workshop-style class will coach them through the writing process and help them move beyond writer’s block. We will demystify how good writing actually happens (Hint: contrary to popular opinion, it is not heavenly inspired!), teach them the three phases of writing, and provide students with practical tools, strategies and resources to support their writing in a fun, encouraging environment. Students will learn to write more efficiently and effectively. Maybe, just maybe, they will learn to like it too!

Enrollment for this course is capped at 6 students per session.

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Grammar Groundwork

Classroom Hours: 5
Price: $190

Session I– Mondays Nov 7-Dec 5 (Five Weeks) – 4-5 p.m.


A short course for students who need a grammar refresher. Along with addressing basic sentence structure, common usage, and common sentence errors, we also introduce students to more advanced elements of punctuation and grammar. Not to brag, but our way of teaching grammar is both fun AND fundamental.

Enrollment for this course is capped at 6 students per session.

Step Up Your Writing Game

Senior level only (grades 10-12)
Classroom Hours: 6
Price: $180

An advanced writing course for solid writers who want to transform their “B” game into an “A” game, this class teaches a more sophisticated understanding of prose style and rhetoric with exercises on vocabulary, word choice, sentence style and syntax. Students will leave the class knowing how to write more vividly, efficiently and memorably.

Research Skills

Classroom Hours: 5
Price: $150 (including course packet)

Using a fun topic of the student’s interest, we break down in a methodical way the steps of composing a research paper: identifying sources, distinguishing between quoting vs. paraphrasing,  proper citation, and elegantly incorporated research. Students emerge with a two-three-page research paper on a topic of their choice.

Analyze This!

Senior level only (grade 10-12)
Classroom Hours: 10
Price: $300 (including course packet)

English papers can be a real bugaboo for some students; the skill of literary analysis and reading texts can seem elusive. This course demystifies literary analysis and breaks down in practical steps how to read and write about literature. We’ll cover how to distinguish analysis from summary, develop close readings of texts, structure literary arguments, and how to write paragraphs and sentences that focus on analysis.


Parent, Potomac School, Virginia.

I asked my daughter what she thought of her writing classes the other day.  She said, ‘With all the tricks that Miss Suzanne taught us, I don’t think writing will be as scary.’ What you taught them is exactly what my daughter needed.  With all that guidance and the tool kit you gave her, she has found writing to be more fun and interesting.


Parent, Maret School

Suzanne worked with my high-school boys. She encouraged them to unlock their thoughts and taught them how to create a well-written, finished product.  The writing drills and creative practice exercises she did with them built their confidence.