Coming up in November

Hi everyone,

Mary Jo Fresch
Laura Robb
Tim Rasinski
David L. Harrison

Here’s the new flyer from the upcoming California State Reading conference. The four of us (MARY JO, LAURA, TIM, and I) have an article coming up in the CA Reader this fall but we had to split up into to make videos for the conference.

We are thrilled to announce that we have added Virtual Workshops to our
Connected with Literacy 2022 Conference. CRA is excited to bring a collection
of 20-30 minute prerecorded videos, featuring presenters ranging from
researchers, award winning children’s authors to teachers who will bring
hands-on practical strategies and ideas you can take back and use with your

Donald Bear, Darl Kiernan and Sarah Negrete … Advancing Emergent and Beginning
Readers – Activities to develop Concept of Word, Phonological Awareness and Early Reading.
Learn to establish a personal reader routine. Phonics and fluency for emergent and
beginning readers are discussed.

Carol Jago … The Role of Literature in Troubling Times
In this workshop participants will explore how imagination can be a tool of response and
resistance. We will reflect upon works that pose complex, compelling questions and learn
protocols for scaffolding such texts for classroom use. Carol will also introduce you to vibrant
new fiction and nonfiction titles sure to engage young readers.
Lori Oczkus … The Science of Reading Comprehension : Short and Sharp Mini Lessons
that Work! – When students look for C’s and Q’s (words to clarify and questions) as they read
they stay engaged and their comprehension dramatically improves. Lori Oczkus, author and
literacy consultant, will demonstrate her favorite “Go To” lessons that dramatically improve
comprehension using any text at any grade level! Join us for this lively session loaded with
ideas to use immediately!

David Harrison and Tim Raskinski … Why Poetry for Reading Instruction – Let us
Count the Ways! – Poetry for children is one of the least valued texts for teaching reading.
We will make the case that poetry offers such great potential for improving all aspects of
reading. Moreover, we argue that poetry is particularly beneficial for students who struggle
in reading.

Mary Jo Fresch and Laura Robb … Powerful Comprehension Tools: Three Reading
Strategies That Work – Fresch and Robb model and discuss how three strategies (visualizing,
comparing/contrasting, and inferring) engage and motivate K-8 students. The strategies trigger
students’ critical thinking for active and deep comprehension.
Stephanie Jeppson … A Passion for Poetry

Viewers will learn a variety of easy to use poetry formats teachers can take back and use with
their students.
Kate Bowen … Using Picture Books to Spark Historical Inquiry and Empathy
This session will discuss historical inquiry in the classroom, offer quick-inquiry suggestions to
use with students, discuss picture books you can use in the elementary and middle school
classroom to support student inquiry and empathy, and provide examples of primary sources
to pair with picture books. Possible topics include titles by California authors, FAIR Act, Voting
Rights, Civil Rights, Indigenous Voices, AAPI, Environment, Women’s History, Labor, and Social

Videos will appear in the
conference program where
attendees will have access to
workshop links that they may
watch at their leisure for a
period of time after the
conference ends.
Visit the CRA
website at:
Contact the CRA
office at:
California Reading
485 Camino De Los Mares
Suite H150/476
San Clemente, CA 92673
Phone: 949-547-6664
Fax: 949-481-8163

If you plan to attend the conference or know someone who will, mark your calendar and spread the word. This year is whizzing by and we’ll be in California (virtually) before you know it!

Huffin’ and puffin’ away

Hi everyone,

My thanks to TINA HACKER for making and posting this announcement yesterday on a site maintained for Hallmark folks, past and present. It would be special to see some people I worked with, back in the day, when I speak at The Writers Place in November. Tina, thank you for sponsoring me for that event. I am looking forward to being back in Kansas City! Maybe some friends from the Springfield area and elsewhere will make plans to attend the free evening that is open to the public.

Yesterday I agreed to make a pre-recorded video with LAURA ROBB, JANAY BROWN-WOOD, and MARGARITA ENGLE for the NCTE conference in November. We’re already set to present at 10:30 a.m. the morning of November 21 in Anaheim.

On today’s agenda, I’ll pick up some pictures I ordered from photographer RANDY BACON from his recent exhibit in partnership with Ozark Literacy Council, “Words and Pictures.” Later in the day I’ll meet with an editor via Google. For now, it’s back in the wheel.

A nice thing

Hi everyone,

LAURA ROBB and I have received word that our 2020 book with Corwin Publishing, Guided Practice for Reading Growth, Grades 4-8, has now been slated for publication by SAGE Knowledge as part of their 2023 SK title list.

SAGE Knowledge is the premier social sciences digital library. Hosting more than 5,000 titles, it includes an expansive range of SAGE eBook and eReference content, including scholarly books, reference works, handbooks, and professional development titles. SAGE Knowledge is sold primarily to the academic library market.

New acceptance, new invitation

Hi everyone,

Yesterday LAURA ROBB, MARY JO FRESCH, TIM RASINSKI, and I got word that our 3,700-word article –“The Art and Science of Teaching Reading” — has been accepted as an Op Ed column for the fall issue of California Reader. We’re delighted. Editors of education journals send out submissions to experts in the field to review. The editor of California Reader shared with us five comments about our article and they are all complimentary. Here’s one of them.Absolutely excellent discussion of the limitations of SOR (Science of Reading) and the practical applications of the ART.  We need this!!!!  Reading Specialists and Classroom Teachers alike will benefit from this easy to comprehend and apply article.  Thank you!!!

Laura Robb
Mary Jo Fresch
Tim Rasinski

On another matter, we also received an official invitation to submit a pre-recorded, 30-minute video for the 2022 Virtual CRA Literacy Conference, Connected With Literacy. “The virtual format provides us this exciting opportunity to reach out to literacy colleagues who might be willing to present 1-2 powerful literacy strategies in a short pre-recorded session. Accepted videos will be available for registrants on demand from the opening of the conference on October 21st through December 31, 2022.” We made a video for the California conference last year so we’re happy to be invited again.

And on a personal matter, I want to thank you for all your sweet birthday wishes to SANDY yesterday. I know she’ll be posting a lot of thank-you notes, too, but I have this handy format available to me so I’m taking advantage of it. THANK YOU!!


What to do today?

Hi everyone,

Yesterday I submitted a proposal for a book that DAN BURR and I want to do. He and I haven’t worked together since I wrote and he illustrated PIRATES (2008) and COWBOYS (2012) for Boyds Mills Press.

PIRATES, especially, received recognition, including Kansas State Reading Circle, NCTE Notable Poetry Book, Nominated for Cybils Award, selected for VOYA’s Nonfiction Honor List, Texas Bluebonnet Master Reading List, Indiana Young Hoosier Book Award Master Reading List, and selected to represent the state of Missouri at the National Book Fair in Washington D.C. I would love to get a new book in the works with Dan.

I also sent a proposal for a book with TIM RASINSKI. We’ve already done the work and leased rights to use it in schools in Pennsylvania and Virginia. Now we’re thinking we might see about getting it published instead of marketing it ourselves.

Also submitted a new story I wrote with JANE YOLEN to a publisher neither of us has worked with before. I need to start thinking about something else I might do for that house.

Jane and I haven’t done anything together since RUM PUM PUM (Holiday House, 2019), which I loved doing.

Also checked signals with KATE COSGROVE about a book we’re interested in doing together. THE DIRT BOOK continues to do well and we love working together.

I think today I’ll work a bit more on the idea to do with Kate. I need to move that one along enough that I can submit it somewhere.

Elsewhere, Tim Rasinski, LYNNE KULICH, and I continue to wait for the readers to report in about the proposal we submitted several weeks ago for a new education book.

LAURA ROBB, Tim Rasinski, and I expect to get a pub date anytime now for a book we’re just completing for Teacher Created Materials. I hope to see that one come out late this year.