2024 Summer Camps

Each July, the Missoula Writing Collaborative offers three unique summer camps for young writers.

For kids entering grades 3-8 we have two weeks of Words with Wings. This camp is for elementary and middle schoolers to explore the world of writing. Words with Wings will take place during July 8-12 and 15-19th and both half-day and full-day options are avaliable.

Our summer teen programming is made up of two camps the Rattlesnake Writing Workshop where 9th-12th graders explore creative writing  and Cracking the College Essay a camp for 11th-12th graders to get a jump start on their college application essays. 

Each camp takes place on the beautiful University of Montana campus and is led by MWC writers. Scholarships are available upon request. Please contact MWC Programs Director Rose Dickson with questions or for scholarship inquiries and sibling discounts at [email protected].

Scroll down to learn about each camp. Ready to register? Sign up at our registration pages below. We look forward to writing with your student this summer!

Words With Wings (Grades 3-8)

At Words with Wings Summer Camp, kids entering grades 3-8 spend their days immersed in writing activities under the guidance of a skilled instructor. In the afternoons, campers take their notebooks outside and find writing inspiration on field trips and on the University of Montana campus.

Our week culminates in an outdoor poetry reading on campus on Friday at noon. After camp, each camper will receive a copy of the 2024 Words With Wings anthology (with their own writing inside!) and will have the chance to read at the Montana Book Festival in September 2024.

Week 1: July 8-12 Week 2: July 15-19 (Campers are welcome to attend both weeks, but please note that programming and activities will be similar.)

Half-day and full day sessions are available.

Words with Wings Half-Day Session

Each morning we’ll meet on the University of Montana campus to write, share, and play with words. Each student will receive their own writing kit (notebook & pencils) and will work closely with a Missoula Writing Collaborative instructor. We’ll take our notebooks outside to write around campus and have lots of time to explore the world of words together.

The half-day session takes place from 9am to noon each day.

Early Bird Discount: $170  Full Price: $180   

Words with Wings Full-Day Session

The full-day session offers an opportunity for students to build on their morning experience. We’ll explore Missoula and its varied ecosystems by foot and bus. These excursions provide guided opportunities for developing writers to observe and write about the world around them. This year we’ll visit and learn about:

  • The Clark Fork River with the Watershed Education Network
  • The Missoula Butterfly House and Insectarium 
  • The Montana Museum of Art and Culture
  • The UM Planetarium

 The full-day session takes place from 9am to 5pm each day.

Early Bird Discount: $280  Full Price: $300

Rattlesnake Writing Workshop
(Grades 9-12)

The Rattlesnake Writing Workshop is a week of creativity, focused writing, and literary exploration for teens entering grades 9 through 12.

This camp is for anyone with an interest in writing, whether you are just starting or have been penning stories for years. Each day you’ll write, read, and revise your writing. Instruction will focus on poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction, with the option to explore other genres as well. Campers will explore Missoula’s museums, library, bookstores, and more. 

Week 1: July 8-12   Week 2: July 15-19

This camp takes place from 12:30-3:30 on the University of Montana campus. 

Early Bird Discount: $170  Full Price: $180 


Cracking the College Essay
(Grades 11-12)

Cracking the College Essay is a camp for rising 11th and 12th graders ready to craft a college admissions essay. Participants will conquer the blank page, receive individual help, and leave with a polished essay they can use and revise for a variety of applications.

 July 15-19

This camp takes place from 12:30 – 3:30 on the University of Montana campus.

Early Bird Discount: $170  Full Price: $180 

Refunds: Program fees are refundable up to a week before camp begins minus a non-refundable administrative fee of $25 per camp.