Institute 14: Listening to the Voices of Struggling Readers and Writers: What They Want Educators to Know
Reading Today Online asked all of the Institute Chairpersons for IRA San Antonio to respond to three questions designed to give our readers and all of the prospective attendees a better understanding of the insights and benefits they will gain from attending these day-long programs. Below are responses from Institute 14 Chair Joan Williams from Sam Houston State University.
What is the professional urgency that this Institute is designed to address?
In almost every classroom in the United States, there are students who struggle with reading and writing. This fact is well documented. Do we look at the challenges of these students as a glass half empty or do we consider their incredible strengths in problem solving, critical thinking, and comprehension? This institute will concentrate on the voices of these students and ways to honor their contributions as we support their challenges with literacy.
What types of literacy professionals is this Institute designed for?
Institute 14 will be beneficial to many levels of educators, including elementary and secondary teachers, administrators, language arts coordinators, reading specialists, dyslexia specialists, Title I teachers, and university educators.
How will attendance at this Institute help those literacy professionals “make a difference” in their work?
Institute 14 will assist literacy professionals in making a difference in their work in several ways.
Three keynote addresses will be given throughout the day from well-known and respected scholars in the field of literacy education:
- Keynote I will be given by Donalyn Miller, the author of The Book Whisperer;
- Keynote II will be given by Dr. Richard Allington, well known scholar in the field of struggling readers;
- Keynote III will be given by Dr. Hannah Gerber from SHSU, who will talk about understanding learning spaces available in our digital culture.
There are also ten breakout sessions throughout the day that will examine from multiple perspectives the issues and strengths of students who are challenged by literacy:
- Listening to the Voices of Struggling Students
- The Case for Sensible Fluency Development
- Dyslexia and Retention
- The Power of Performing Text as a Motivational Tool
- Giving Voice to Second Language Writers
- What Struggling Writers Want Educators to Know
- Tools for Independent Reading
- What Struggling Readers and Writers Want Principals to Know
- Language Learning in Virtual Communities
- What Educators Need to Know about Informational Writing and Struggling Students
Registration Information: Yes, the institutes do sell out! If you are interested in this institute, you may also like Institute 13: Making a Difference through Writing: The Other "R" in Literacy or many of the other institutes offered. Preconference institutes will be held at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center in San Antonio, Texas from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Friday, April 19 before the 58th International Reading Association Annual Convention begins on Saturday, April 20. Register online for an institute and/or to register for the annual convention. Call 888-294-9167 or 415-979-2278 to find out how to register by phone, fax, or mail. To learn more about convention events in San Antonio, visit the annual convention website and the online itinerary planner (iPlanner), or read more Reading Today annual convention articles.