MID-State Reading Council

Volume 8, Issue 1--- Back to School 2019

President's Message

Anyone else feel like this summer is coming to an end at a more rapid pace than years before? Hopefully your summer months were full with everything and everyone that fill you up for the year to come. Teaching and working in schools is hard and important work. MID-State knows that you have a lot to accomplish with your new community of students this year. We have plans for fun professional development this year that will help you with this work. While you consider some of our events, like the book club or book talks, consider how we can help you with our literacy grant. How could you use this grant to pour into the lives of your students?

Wishing you a wonderful year!


--Claire Michaels, MID-State Reading Council President

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Join us for MID-State Reading Council's Book Club "Read" for this year: Game Changer! Book Access for All Kids by Donalyn Miller & Colby Sharp

Donalyn Miller, author of The Book Whisperer and several other books, and colleague, Colby Sharp, present a compelling read about the importance of books in our students’ literacy lives and how libraries are a key part of our literacy resources. In particular, they present the research, as well as practical suggestions and ideas, for creating vibrant classroom libraries. They also encourage advocacy for school and public libraries with professionally-trained librarians in charge of them, and helping make sure that every child has books of their own in their homes.


The authors emphasize and substantiate the important fact that getting our students to be voluminous, independent readers is based mainly on choice and interest, above everything else. Other important topics addressed are the need for inclusive representation in children’s literature, matching just the right book to the right reader, book talking to increase interest, and dedicating time each day for reading at home and at school. Game Changer will challenge some of your literacy beliefs and practices, but also provides so many ideas of how we can change our approach to literacy instruction to help more children become avid, capable readers. An obvious component is the thoughtful, planned literacy instruction that we provide our students each day.


Join our MID-State Book Club this fall and get the chance to read and discuss some of the valuable and important ideas in this book. It will be fun, enlightening, and a good chance to relax after a hard day at school, and just talk with your colleagues. Enjoy a cold beverage and some appetizers, while expanding your knowledge and your practices about the important work you do with children!!


IMPORTANT NOTE: Donalyn Miller will be one of our keynote speakers at the Illinois Reading Council’s Fall Conference in Peoria on Thursday, October 3, 2019. Come to the conference, and meet the author of our Book Club’s selection!!


--Carol Owles, MID-State Treasurer

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