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Teaching Assistant at University of Illinois at Chicago |

Hannah Green is a PhD student in the Program for Writers at the University of Illinois at Chicago. While a creative writer by nature, she’s a teacher at heart and enjoys teaching writing in all its forms including composition, professional, technical, and creative writing. Her research interests include the place of the asylum in narratives of mental illness, the literature of Southern Africa, and oral storytelling. Her creative writing appears both in print and online in places such as The Rumpus, PANK, and McSweeney's. Hannah is also the Editor-in-Chief of During Office Hours.

Syllabus — Intro to the Writing of Fiction

Below you'll find a syllabus for a 200-level Intro to the Writing of Fiction course complete with readings and assignments.  Feature image courtesy of Andrew Seaman    

Time in Narratives

A simple handout that illustrates key concepts of time in narratives by comparing them to the basic controls we use when watching videos. Feature image...

Place Essays — Examples Using Research

Incorporating research into creative nonfiction essays helps bring the narrative to life but can be difficult to do. Below you'll find a collection of...

Place Essays – Finding Places to Write About

Writing about place is more than writing about a vacation or a childhood home. There are certain tensions evident in all spaces when we...

Advice: Revamping Office Hours

Are your office hours dragging? Do they feel like a waste of time? Or maybe they're just lagging this semester? Take a look at...

Student Engagement Articles

Maintaining student engagement can be difficult, especially as we near midterms where students' minds are preoccupied with any number of papers, exams, or presentations....

Handout: Concision for Creative Writers

If you're looking for a way to encourage your creative writing students to be more concise, try this simple concision handout.       Photo by Todd Quackenbush on Unsplash    

Handout: Avoiding ‘Thing’ Words

I'll admit right off the bat that my major pet peeve is 'thing' words. Something. Nothing. Anything. Everything. And just plain old thing. In...

Activity: The Office Challenge

Office hours can feel long, laborious, and lonely when no one shows up, especially in the beginning of a semester. One way I've found to increase my students' use of office hours is to challenge them to meet with me. 

Creating Usable Syllabi

We're all familiar with the frustrations that come from students not reading the syllabus. But I've come to realize the problem isn't one of whether or not the syllabus is read, but one of if and how it's used.

Three Ways to Visualize Your Syllabus

While the syllabus forms the foundation of a course, it doesn't always reach it's full potential. By nature, the syllabus is linear. The daily plans...

Activity: Zombie Apocalypse & Critical Thinking

It can be difficult to engage students in critical thinking, but this activity helps students think outside the box and anticipate problems. I've found...

Activity: Grammar as Meaning in ‘Dear John’ Letters

Students are often intimidated by grammar because they're led to believe it's a case of 'right' or 'wrong.' Some students get so caught up...

Activity: Characters, Conflict, and Goals

It can be difficult to reveal connections between key elements of craft in fiction writing classes, but this activity is designed to do just that.

Advice: Engaging the Unruly Class

An unruly class can leave us feeling flustered, frustrated, and downright helpless. Try these strategies to help refocus your students' attention.

Activity: Four Ways to Enhance Grading

Sometimes grading seems like a mystery to students so helping them understand how we reach our conclusions is a beneficial step in their learning process.

Activity: Ransom Notes

If you're looking for a different type of in-class activity to get students thinking about word choice, you'll find it with this fun but challenging task.

Activity: Drawing, Doodles, and Sketches

Most of the activities and assignments in our classrooms revolve around writing and reading, but having students draw, sketch, or doodle can give them news ways to express and connect their thoughts, ideas, and concerns. In this artical you'll find five ways to help students embrace their visual skills.

Five Revision Activities

Five revision activities you can use either inside or outside the classroom to show the importance and effects of revision. 

Handout: Literary Magazine Submissions

A handout covering the basics of submitting to literary magazines: where to submit, cover letters, terminology, and mistakes to avoid.

Lesson Plan: Paraphrasing

A PowerPoint presentation explaining what paraphrasing is, how to paraphrase, and an in-class activity for paraphrasing.

Handout: MLA & the Annotated Bibliography

A 2-page handout focusing on MLA citations and formatting for an annotated bibliography.

Lesson Plan: Incorporating Quotations, Claims, & Evidence

A PowerPoint presentation that breaks down different types of evidence and explains how and when to use them.

Handout: Types of Plagiarism

Plagiarism is more than just copying and pasting the words of others and this can sometimes be difficult to explain to students. The handout below illustrates the different types of plagiarism and provides examples that can be used for an in-class activity and discussion.

Visualizing Class Participation

A diagram that helps students and teachers be on the same page when it comes to understanding expectations for and evaluations of class participation.

Handout – Reflection on Professionalism & Participation

A handout distributed in class that asks students to reflect on their actions as a developing professional and their participation in class. Participation is...

Lego: The Building Blocks of Writing

One of my favorite in-class activities is simple, easy to set up, and, most importantly, it involves Lego. I often use this in composition...

Assignment: Career Profile

An engaging and easily adaptable assignment for early career students that helps them navigate their college career paths

QCS Workshop Responses

Silence in the classroom can be awkward, especially when your students are tasked with discussing their peers’ work in a creative writing workshop. I’ve found...

Learning to Read Online

In introductory writing classes with a research based project, most of us spend time teaching students how to read academic journal articles. We understand how to...

On What I Hope This Site Can Be

A Message from the Editor: For those of you that know me, and no doubt today, at the start of this project, many of you...

Discover new resources...

Advice: Opening up Office Hours

A common complaint of college instructors is how many of their students don’t come to office hours when they are struggling. As instructors, we...
advice column assignment

Assignment: The Advice Column Two Ways–Part One: Creative Nonfiction

Writing advice columns with the skills of the essayist allows CNF writers to focus on the shared, often abstract, subjects of disparate experiences.
career profile assignment

Assignment Sequence: The World as Seen, Heard, Experienced, Written

An assignment sequence where students explore the world of the arts, beginning with photography and increasing in writing involvement and critical scrutiny through the worlds of music and film before finally concluding in a work of literature. Through these various lenses, students examine both the status of these arts, what goes into evaluating them, and their relation to their campus, its history, and the world at large.