Episode 1 - Interviewing Leslie & Mara
Welcome to Leading Literacy, a new podcast from Reading Language Arts. In this first episode, we get to know Leslie and Mara and find out why they decided to give podcasting a shot.
Episode 2 - Spell Master Extraordinaire
Leslie & Mara are thrilled to chat with their dear friend and spell master extraordinaire, Donna Van Allen! If you've ever wondered what it's like to host a county-wide spelling bee, look no further. In this short episode, Donna shares tips for future spelling bee contestants and her experiences from over a decade as the spell master for the LA County Spelling Bee. Is it possible to stump a spell master? Find out!
Episode 3 - Carolyn Strom
Leslie & Mara welcome Dr. Carolyn Strom - first grade teacher, turned reading specialist/literacy consultant, turned NYU Professor. Carolyn joins the podcast to discuss the pervasive gaps between research and practice and the importance of connecting the two for our earliest learners - whose brains are developing the most! You won't want to miss this lively conversation!
Click here to download a copy Dr. Strom's Family Playlist and Extension Activities.
Episode 4 - Natalie Wexler
Natalie Wexler shares her insights and thoughts with Leslie and Mara about her two books: The Knowledge Gap and The Writing Revolution. Join the conversation as Natalie discusses the importance of immersing all students of varied socioeconomic backgrounds, with content knowledge about the world and then linking that knowledge to explicit writing instruction.
Click on the following links to read Natalie Wexler's articles:
The Need for Explicit Instruction in Teaching Students to Write Well
Elementary Education Has Gone Terribly Wrong
Episode 5 - Emily Hanford
Leading Literacy is so excited to have Emily Hanford! Emily is a senior education correspondent at American Public Media Reports and a total science of reading rockstar! She's been working in public media for over 2 decades as a reporter, producer, news editor, and program host. She's won all kinds of awards and is one of our reading heroes. Be prepared to have your mind blown!
Click on the following links to read Emily Hanford's articles:
At a Loss for Words
What the Words Say
Episode 6 - Elizabeth Jimenez Salinas
Join Leslie, Mara, and Elizabeth Jimenez Salinas as they discuss the "superpowers" of being bilingual and practical strategies to implement in the classroom to help all English learners. Elizabeth brings her knowledge and experience from her days as a bilingual educator, advocate and consultant. Elizabeth is amazing!
Click on the following links to access the resources mentioned in this podcast:
Eradicating Learned Passivity
Homework Questions and Prompts for Long Term English Learners
Reparable Harm Document
Episode 7 - Jeff Share
Leslie and Mara are delighted to welcome UCLA professor, Dr. Jeff Share, co-author of The Critical Media Literacy Guide: Engaging Media and Transforming Education. In a world full of “fake” news and information over-load, Jeff shares his passion and insights into the field of critical media literacy and how educators can help students analyze memes, verify sources, and investigate biases.
Episode 8 - Louisa Moats
Leading Literacy is over-the-moon excited and honored to welcome THE Dr. Louise Moats. Dr. Moats has dedicated her entire career to literacy education as a teacher, researcher, psychologist, graduate school faculty member, and author. Dr. Moats was kind enough to drop in and have a chat with us about the importance of the science of reading. You won’t want to miss what she has to share!
Episode 9 - Maryanne Wolf
Leslie and Mara welcome Dr. Maryanne Wolf on Leading Literacy. Dr. Wolf is the director for the Center for Dyslexia, Diverse Learners, and Social Justice at the UCLA Graduate School of Education and Information Studies. She is an author and advocate for children and literacy around the world. Dr. Wolf shares her knowledge and passion on how to help build “the reading brain” for all of our students.
Episode 10 - Jessica Hamman
Leading Literacy welcomes Jessica Hamman, founder and CEO of Glean Education. Jessica has worked in education for close to two decades. She started Glean Education to empower educators with best practices to support struggling students. Jessica has much to share during our conversation, including her deep knowledge and experiences with dyslexia. You won't want to miss it!
Episode 11 - Teacher Roundtable
We have a very special episode of Leading Literacy - our very first teacher roundtable discussion! We are thrilled to welcome Xochitl Morales (K teacher, Los Altos Elem., South Whittier SD), Andrea Castaneda (SPED Autism Spectrum Disorder Mod/Sev. teacher, Lone Hill MS, Bonita USD), Ella Farinas (Instructional Coach & 6-8 AVID Coordinator, Washington STEAM Multilingual Academy, Pasadena USD), Curtis Duong (8th grade teacher, Garfield Elem., Alhambra USD), and Jenna Kamp (12th grade English teacher, University Prep. Value Charter HS). Listen in to hear their experiences and how educators are adjusting and coping during the pandemic. We are so proud of our hard-working educators and we couldn't be more excited to highlight these rockstars!
Episode 12 - Ricky Robertson
Ricky Robertson stops by Leading Literacy to discuss the importance of student trauma and adversity and how it impacts their educational experience and outcome. As a former teacher, Ricky provides a unique lens through which to serve students who have experienced adverse childhood experiences (ACES). Currently as an author, consultant, and coach, Ricky supports schools and districts to develop multi-tiered social-emotional and behavioral supports that are both trauma-informed and culturally responsive. Ricky is a co-author of the book, Building Resilience in Students Impacted by Adverse Childhood Experiences: A Whole Staff Approach. You can learn more about Ricky and his work on his website: www.buildingresilienceinstudents.com
Episode 13 - Margaret Goldberg
Leading Literacy welcomes Margaret Goldberg for a chat about all things science of reading, coaching, and evidence-based reading instruction. Currently, Margaret is a first grade teacher in a Title 1 school in Oakland and has served in her district in a variety of literacy leadership roles. She is the co-founder of The Right to Read Project, a group of teachers, researchers, and activists committed to the pursuit of equity through literacy. Margaret has tons of knowledge to share! Check out her amazing blog, reading resources, and infographics at https://righttoreadproject.com/ and on Reading Rockets https://www.readingrockets.org/blogs/right-to-read.
Episode 14 - Thomishia Booker
Today on Leading Literacy we are thrilled to welcome licensed therapist, author, mother and advocate, Dr. Thomishia Booker. Dr. Booker is the author of three books and CEO of HeyCarterBooks. Her self-published book, "Brown Boy Joy" has been featured in the Netflix Family series, "Bookmarks: Celebrating Black Voices." Dr. Booker's background serves as a foundation for writing books focused on building self-confidence and pride among children of color. Be sure to drop in to listen.
Click on the following link to learn more about Dr. Booker: Meet the Self-Published Author Who Negotiated a Deal with Netflix
As mentioned in the podcast, learn more about Black Literacy Collective.
Episode 15 - Dr. Julie Washington
Leading Literacy welcomes UC Irvine School of Education professor, Dr. Julie Washington. Dr. Washington's research is focused on the intersection of literacy, language variation, and poverty. Her work pays a particular focus on understanding the role of cultural dialect in the identification of reading disabilities in school-aged African American children. We hope you enjoy this gem of a conversation as much as we did.
Episode 16 - Dr. Kathryn Edwards & Leslie Zoroya
On this special episode of Leading Literacy, Mara interviews Leslie and Dr. Kathryn Edwards, the Director of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion at LACOE. Leslie and Kathryn recently completed a year-long project in collaboration with UCLA and the Center for Powerful Public Schools and Riverside County Office of Education, on a document entitled, Supporting the African American Learner: A Guide for Transforming Beliefs, Systems and Practices for Black Students. Leslie and Kathryn's passion will inspire and motivate as they discuss how this document can be put into practice to ensure better outcomes for Black students. You won't want to miss it!
Episode 17 - Francisco X. Stork
Leslie and Mara interview celebrated young adult fiction author, Francisco X. Stork. Francisco has a very interesting backstory as a young immigrant from Mexico and overcoming many obstacles to attend both Harvard University and Columbia Law School. Although Francisco worked many years as a lawyer, it was his true passion of writing that led him to success as an author of nine young adult novels. We are so excited to share this genuine conversation.
Click here to learn more about Francisco and his work.
Episode 18 - WriteGirl L.A. Founder:
In this must-listen episode of Leading Literacy, Leslie and Mara have a wonderful discussion with Keren Taylor, Executive Director and Founder of WriteGirl L.A. Keren shares her journey in developing and expanding WriteGirl into a nationally-recognized writing and mentoring organization aimed at helping underserved Los Angeles teens discover and express their creative voices. Join this inspiring conversation and you'll catch yourself smiling right along with us!
Learn more about WriteGirl L.A.
Episode 19 - L.A. County Poet Laureate: Lynne Thompson
Leading Literacy has the honor and privilege to welcome L.A. County's 2021 Poet Laureate, Lynne Thompson. Listen in and get to know Lynne and the unconventional path that led her to this special role. Enjoy!
Read more about Lynne on the Los Angeles Public Library website.
Episode 20 - Dr. Katie Novak & Mirko Chardin
Leading Literacy is super thrilled and honored to welcome Dr. Katie Novak and Mirko Chardin to the podcast to talk about their new book, "Equity by Design: Delivering on the Power and Promise of UDL." Katie is a world-known educator, college professor, author, and has done extensive work around Universal Design for Learning. Mirko Chardin is also an educator and founding head of a school in Massachusetts as well as a hip-hop artist. Katie and Mirko both bring their authentic selves, knowledge, and passion around social justice, equity, and UDL. This conversation elevates the pairing of: will and skill. Your equity-educator-self will LOVE this episode!
Click here to learn more about Katie and Mirko, their work, and their latest book.
Episode 21 - Dr. Maria Murray
It is our pleasure to welcome Dr. Maria Murray to Leading Literacy! Maria is the CEO and President of The Reading League and has served as an associate professor at the State University of New York at Oswego. For over 10 years, she has taught courses related to literacy assessment and intervention and is extremely passionate about the prevention and remediation of reading difficulty. You won’t want to miss this fun and insightful conversation about The Science of Reading: A Defining Moment and being a Lone Nut in the world of evidence-based reading instruction. We are definitely not worthy to have Maria on our little podcast, but at the same time we can’t wait to share it with all of you!
Episode 22 - DeJunne' Clark Jackson
Leading Literacy welcomes DeJunne' Clark Jackson, Vice President of Program Development for the Center for Development and Learning. DeJunne' shares her insight and expertise as an educator, advocate, and parent. It is through these unique lenses that drives DeJunne's work and passion around equitable access for both struggling students and teachers. This episode both informs and inspires and we know you'll love it as much as we did. Enjoy!
Episode 23 - Ruth Baskett
Leading Literacy welcomes LACOE's very own English Learner Project Director, Ruth Baskett. Ruth is both hilarious and knowledgeable in the world of quality English learner programs and services. Join us as we discuss pressing needs for our English learners, the mystifying disconnect between English learner and early reading advocates, and looking forward to the Dual Language initiative in California. We hope you enjoy this lively conversation as much as we did.
Episode 24 - Kymyona Burk
Leading Literacy welcomes Dr. Kymyona Burk to the podcast. Currently, Dr. Burk is a senior policy fellow from ExcelinEd where she supports states and leaders with comprehensive K-3 reading policies. Dr. Burk also served as the former state literacy director at the Mississippi State Department of Education where she helped to lead a statewide literacy improvement campaign. Thanks to Dr. Burk's efforts, Mississippi was the only state in 2019 to make gains on the NAEP assessment! Join the conversation as Dr. Burk shares Mississippi's policies, efforts, and journey towards statewide literacy improvement. Such a great listen!
Episode 25 - Todd Collins
On this episode of Leading Literacy, we are thrilled to have Todd Collins as our guest. Todd is a board member of a California school district that has had a "reading reckoning." Todd's advocacy work prompted him to launch the California Reading Coalition, which is a group of educators, advocates, researchers, and policy makers who are committed to improving reading outcomes for all California students. Enjoy this lively chat!
Episode 26 - Chris Ann Horsley
We are excited to introduce you to Chris Ann Horsley, Director of Elementary Curriculum at Bonita Unified School District. As a district and school site leader, Chris Ann has played a pivotal role in helping her schools become the number 1 ranked district on the California Reading Report Card. Listen in on this insightful conversation as Chris Ann discusses the fundamental systems she set in place to help her students and teachers succeed. This a good one. Enjoy!
Episode 27 - Elsa Cardenas-Hagan
Leading Literacy can't wait to introduce you to Dr. Elsa Cardenas-Hagan! Elsa is a Bilingual Speech Language Pathologist, who has spent decades working with and advocating for multilingual learners. As a multilingual student herself, Elsa discusses the importance of cross-linguistic relationships, teacher knowledge, and the deep value of research to effectively support all our students. Elsa is a bright light and leader in the multilingual learner community and her book Literacy Foundations for English Learners is a must have. There's no denying the genuineness of this conversation - enjoy!