Dr. Erik Jacobson is an Associate Professor in the Early Childhood, Elementary and Literacy Education Department at Montclair State University. In his ten years at MSU, he has taught a range of courses, from developmental reading courses for freshmen to advanced seminars for students receiving their Masters of Reading degrees and their Reading Specialist Certifications.
Most recently he has been teaching courses on content area literacy for future teachers in a variety of disciplines (e.g., history, math, physical education, art, etc.) and a course on the foundations of literacy for those specializing in the subject.
Jacobson has been with Write on Sports for ten years, since the second year of its existence. He joined the project to help develop the curriculum and to lead teacher preparation for the camps. He was initially the lead teacher in both camps the organization ran, but with the expansion of the project into multiple sites he has focused his teaching attention on Newark. Each year he works with Write on Sports teachers and staff to update the curriculum and to organize the teaching preparation effort. He is also responsible for initial teacher preparation at WoS affiliates and provides ongoing curricular support for each location. He has also helped facilitate other versions of the camp, including one-shot events at professional sporting events and after-school versions that run for several weeks.
For most of his career, Jacobson has focused on issues facing adults who need support in literacy or language learning, working as a teacher, a professional developer, and a researcher. He worked in community based adult education in the greater Boston area for ten years, teaching and working in a variety of programs (e.g., ESL, Citizenship, Family Literacy) and with a number of immigrant community-based organizations (including Haitian, Somali, and Capeverdean centers). In New Jersey he has worked with community-based organizations in Newark, Jersey City and Elizabeth, both providing professional development opportunities and working directly with students as a volunteer ESOL teacher.
Much of this work has included incorporating technology into the classroom, with a focus on students creating videos as a vehicle for exploring and improving their English skills. Jacobson has also conducted research on adult literacy programs in Japan, with a focus on efforts to provide Japanese language support for immigrants to Japan.
Jacobson received a Masters and Doctorate (in Language and Literacy) from Harvard University’s Graduate School of Education. He is currently on the board of the New Jersey Association for Lifelong Learning, and he is a past president of that organization.
Students at the Write on Sports camp in Newark watch as WoS Program Director Dr. Erik Jacobson works with another student on his long-form feature story.
Dr. Erik Jacobson, Write on Sports Program Director