John Creger


English teacher John Creger learned from sophomores at American High School in Fremont CA from 1988 through 2023. In his publications and presentations since 1998, John communicates to educators what his sophomores’ continuing response to his Personal Creed Project teaches him about a deeper kind of literacy. He published his first book, The Personal Creed Project and a New Vision of Learning, in 2004, along with articles in professional journals in 2002, 2012, 2015, 2018, and 2020. He launched this first Heritage course for teachers in 2020, following up the next year with his second, Connecting with Hard to Reach and Marginalized Students. In 2023, he and a team of former students formed The Personal Creed Organization to promote and support self-discovery, launching an online course for the general public on the Udemy platform: A Journey of Reflection into Your Values and Your Life: Discover Yourself with the Personal Creed Project. He earned a B.A. from the University of California at Berkeley, and an M.A. from San Francisco State University, both in English. In recognition of the Personal Creed Project, the National Council of Teachers of English and the National Writing Project presented John the James Moffett Memorial Award for Teacher Research.

Offered Courses


Course No. ED474d, ED574d

Tuition $315 ‑ $415

Quarter Credits 5

Students who respond to us the least might actually need us the most. This course introduces an approach that prepares teachers to counter the harm inflicted when students internalize the negative stereotypes society aims at black, brown, native and other groups of marginalized students. In The Innocent Classroom, the author of our course text Alexs Pate reveals how internalized stereotypes create a sense of unwarranted guilt in these students that adversely affects their engagement in learning. This course is designed to help teachers create individual relationships that can guide our hard-to-reach and marginalized students to shed this sense of guilt, restore their innocence, and re-engage in learning.


Course No. ED471w, ED571w

Tuition $315 ‑ $415

Quarter Credits 5

This course prepares elementary, intermediate and secondary language arts and other teachers to build curriculum that guides their students to understand themselves by a) reflecting on their lives to date, b) discovering what they value, and c) deciding how they wish to make a difference in the world. 

Building on research into the developmental needs of young people, and my own classroom research on deepening the experience of learning, you'll learn ways to design your students' self-discovery into the reading, writing and conversation strands of your courses. In the approach you'll learn here, this self-discovery culminates in a life-changing classroom community rite-of-passage called the Personal Creed Project.