Struggling Readers and the Common Core

the following information was received in an email.

Struggling Readers and the Common Core
Improving Literacy in Changing Times

An ALA/Booklist webinar from Orca Book Publishers and Saddleback Education

The goal of the Common Core State Standards is to accelerate students’ reading achievement to grade level by the end of 2014, but educators can’t begin to make an impact on young adults who are reading below grade level without rich resources to aid them.

In this hour-long, free webinar, sponsored by Orca Book Publishers and Saddleback Education, an expert panel will offer tips about how to implement the Common Core State Standards with struggling and striving readers in the middle- and high-school classroom.

Date: Tuesday, October 22, 2013 2:00 pm EST

Register here.

KC Boyd is a library media specialist in inner-city Chicago and author of the popular blog The Audacious Librarian.
Troy Fresch is the Assistant Principal at Tustin High School in Tustin, California and has served on the Tustin Unified School District’s Common Core implementation team.
Tim McHugh is the co-owner and VP of Sales/Marketing at Saddleback Educational Publishing.
Andrew Wooldridge is publisher at Orca Books and the editor of several series of successful novels for middle and high school readers.

NEH Crowdsources NonFiction Reading Lists

The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) is asking for our help in creating reading lists for elementary, middle and high schools students. The Summertime Nonfiction reading list will reflect Common Core standards while encouraging students to read science, history and biographies for their own enjoyment. The public is asked to suggest books and a final selection will be made by a panel of experts.

Don’t complain about what isn’t on the list if you don’t take the opportunity to suggest titles now! Be prepared to state what lasting value you believe the book has and provide a brief summary.

I don’t see a closing date on the announcement, so please submit your titles sooner rather than later.

International Book Giving Day





International Book Giving Day is a volunteer initiative aimed at getting books in the hands of as many children as possible on February 14, 2013.

International Book Giving Day’s focus is on encouraging people worldwide to engage in simple acts of giving. We will invite individuals to: 1) give a book to a friend or family member, 2) leave a book in a waiting room for children to read, or 3) donate a book to a local hospital, shelter or library or to an organization that distributes used books to children internationally.
In addition, we will encourage people to support the work of nonprofit organizations (i.e. charities) that work year round to give books to children, such as Room to Read, Books for Africa, Book Aid International, The Book Bus, Indigenous Literacy Foundation and Pratham Books.
For more, see International Book Giving Day’s new website:!

Do you ALAN?

I’ve written quite a bit about attending the ALAN conference, but never about ALAN.

ALAN is the Assembly on Literacy for Adolescents.

The Assembly on Literature for Adolescents is an independent assembly of NCTE. Founded in November 1973, ALAN is made up of teachers, authors, librarians, publishers, teacher-educators and their students, and others who are particularly interested in the area of young adult literature.

ALAN offers a wealth of opportunities to anyone interested in young adult literature. Our memberships is made up of teachers, librarians, professors, authors, publishers, agents, and anyone else who loves YA!  On the sidebar is a list of docs describing our mission, our outreach programs, our grants, our membership benefits, and our publications.

At the conferences I’ve attended, I’ve met academics, public librarians, lawyers who write YA, storytellers, teachers, publishers and authors. While I’ve been dismayed by the lack of people of color at the events, I have been impressed by their commitment to diversity.

During the conference, the following points were made.

• ALAN is looking to grow their membership. Currently, you can join for the ridiculously low fee of $20. Members receive copies of The ALAN Review.

• ALAN is looking for state representatives to work locally with members.

• There is a need for more people to review books for ALAN. The reviews appear on the ALAN website and/or in the journal.

• ALAN is making efforts to do more work with middle and high school teachers. You could be a teacher, publisher, author or student who has ideas on how this organization can provide resources for this endeavor.

ALAN maintains an online community which anyone can join. Log it, join the discussions, share your ideas and let your voice be heard! Think about going to the conference next year (Have I mentioned that you’ll receive 30 books when you attend??). Consider applying for a grant. Join! Give a friend a membership for Christmas! If you, like me want to see more books for teens of color, we both have to be more active in the YA community.

Do at least follow ALAN on Twitter and on FB