As a high school English teacher, Annie Karabell realized that many students need more individual attention on writing-intensive tasks than they are able to get during the course of the school day. She observed that students responded exceptionally well to one-on-on conferences and to specific, targeted feedback. In many cases, she noted that student-centered writing conferences propelled students to more creative thinking and coherent writing. 

While classroom writing instruction can introduce students to the fundamentals of research, organization, and composition, instruction in a group setting simply cannot address each student's unique needs, ideas, and thinking processes. For that reason, Annie opened The Writing Room in March 2017 to offer individual writing support to students. Building on her experience in both university and high school writing centers, Annie provides structure and support to students on research and writing assignments so that they can not only succeed on their current task, but also approach future writing tasks confidently and with effective strategies. 

Annie Karabell, Writing Specialist 


Annie Karabell graduated from Wake Forest University with a bachelor’s degree in English and a certification to teach secondary English. After graduation, she served as an AmeriCorps volunteer in Washington, DC, teaching writing, reading, and math classes to adult learners. Annie then received a master’s degree in English and American Literature from Georgetown University. While there, she served as a teaching assistant in writing-intensive courses and worked as a tutor in the university writing center. Annie presented papers at a number of graduate conferences and completed her master’s thesis on postcolonial feminism and narrative theory with the highest distinction. 

Annie then taught English in the Alexandria City Public Schools and at The Lab School of Washington. While teaching, Annie assisted in curriculum development, received grants for field trips and classroom materials, and co-led professional development for other teachers. In 2014, Annie was one of 100 teachers across the country named a PBS Digital Innovator for her work to integrate technology in the classroom. 

Since earning her master’s, Annie has taken additional graduate courses in the fields of writing, neuropsychology, learning disabilities, statistics, child language acquisition, and reading. She is also trained in developmental word study instruction and the Orton-Gillingham approach to literacy instruction. 

Annie has worked with diverse learners, including those with learning and attention challenges and gifted students. In addition to providing writing lessons, Annie offers support in reading comprehension, fluency, and decoding. 

Annie is currently the lead instructor for the Master Teacher Cadre in Secondary Special Education at American University, a professional development program aimed at supporting aspiring teacher-leaders in DC public and charter schools. In the Fall of 2018, Annie will become an adjunct faculty member in the School of Education at American University.  Annie has trained secondary teachers and college faculty members in learning disabilities, evidence-based practices, and writing instruction. 

Annie lives in Washington, DC, with her husband, daughter, and dog.