NaNoWriMo Young Writers Program

What does NaNoWriMo stand for?
National Novel Writing Month

When does it take place?
Every November 1st through 30th.

What's the goal?
To write a novel as fast as you can without worrying about editing. The goal, in short,  is word count. For adults, the goal is 50,000 words. For the Young Writers Program (YWP) anyone under 17 can set their own word count goal that is "reasonable, yet challenging" to them. Participants in YWP can change their word count goal along the way, all the way up to November 24 to allow for maintaining challenge.

How do you win?
You reach your word count goal by November 30. That's it. Throughout the month you just copy and paste your novel into their app and it verifies word count. It's not posted, no one reads it. The goal is to write write write. The more you write the better and more confident you get.

What do I get for winning?
A NaNoWriMo winner badge and certificate to show off along with bragging rights. CreateSpace will offer all winners a promo code to turn their novel into 5 Free paperback books.

How big is this?
"In 2011, 250,000 adults participated through our main site, and 50,000 young writers participated through the YWP."

What is offered to help us teach this?
There are free workbooks, lesson plans, participant badges, progress sheets, classroom/group kits, Common Core Curriculum, online classes and lots and lots of support. You can find groups in your area and a huge forum for both student and parent to go to for help.

The workbooks are PDFs that you can type in and save your progress or print out. It will take your student through the process of preparing to write their novel. There are lots of goal worksheets to use to keep motivation high. It has a great sense of humor. 

How would this work with my Elementary Grade students?
Lower elementary students have the most flexibility. You can focus on storytelling rather than writing. You can work in short sessions every day and track the word count at the end. You can have them act out the story and transcribe it, keeping track of word count. There are many more ideas at the YWP site here

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