We are a small community of educators who write about our experiences with regard to literacy and leadership. If you are interested in becoming a contributor, scroll down to the bottom of this page.
Lead Contributor: Matt Renwick (@ReadByExample, mattrenwick.com)
This is Matt’s nineteenth year in public education. He started as a 5th and 6th grade teacher in a country school outside of Wisconsin Rapids, WI. After seven years of teaching, he served as a dean of students at a junior high, which developed into an assistant principalship and eventually head principal at an elementary school. Matt is now an elementary principal for the Mineral Point Unified School District. He also writes for ASCD and Lead Literacy.
Contributor: Paige Bergin (@PaigeBergin)
Paige Bergin is starting her 4th year as an Instructional Coach. She has been in education for 15 years. Her bachelor’s degree is in Early Childhood Education and Master’s degree is in Educational Administration and Curriculum Supervision. Paige is National Board Certified. In 2010, she received the Presidential Award for Excellence in Math and Science Teaching. Paige loves sharing her passion for learning with students and teachers alike.
Contributor: Jamie Cicconetti (Lessons Learned)
Jamie is a Director of Special Education for a small, rural district in Apple Creek, Ohio. She has a passion for meeting individual student’s needs while still holding high expectations for all learners. Recent professional development around the topic of Social Justice has deepened this fire. Previously, Jamie taught second and third grades and LOVED creating a love of reading in my students. They read wonderful books together, multiple times every day and it is absolutely what she missed most about the classroom.
Contributor: Ryanne Deschane (@Ryanne_Deschane)
Ryanne Deschane is from Northern Wisconsin. Currently a first-grade teacher, but has been an elementary school teacher in the same school for the past 21 years. She has taught kindergarten, first, second and third grade. She has also taught multi-age in a k/1, 1/2, and 2/3 combination. She just acquired her Rdg. 316 license through the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh, and is continuing to pursue her passion for literacy learning by taking courses for the Rdg.317 specialist license.
Contributor: Jessica Johnson (@PrincipalJ)
Jessica Johnson is an elementary school principal in Wisconsin. She is the 2014 Wisconsin Elementary School Principal of the Year. She has previously taught in Minnesota and worked as an instructional coach and assistant principal in Arizona, earning her master’s degree at Arizona State University. As a continuous learner, she is passionate about literacy, principal productivity, social media, technology integration, and leading with a “coaching hat” as an administrator. She is the co-author of The Coach Approach to School Leadership (ASCD, 2017).
Contributor: Carrie Kreider (@ctkreider)
Carrie is a middle school reading specialist in Philadelphia. She taught music before making the leap to literacy. She is interested in using the power of literacy for social justice and the relationship between music and literacy. In the rare moments when she’s not reading, you can find Carrie running, tending to her urban garden, or on the trapeze.
Contributor: Jen McDonough (@JenJMcDonough, Literacy Chats)
Jen McDonough has been a First Grade teacher and part-time literacy coach for the past 17 years. She is the co-author of A Place for Wonder: Reading and Writing Nonfiction in the Primary Grades with Georgia Heard (Stenhouse, 2008) and co-author of Conferring with Young Writers: What to do When You Don’t Know What to Do with Kristin Ackerman (Stenhouse, 2016). Jen presents to teachers across the country on reading and writing topics and is excited about her new role as a K-4 Literacy Specialist at The Pine School in Hobe Sound, Florida.
Contributor: Heather McKay (@HeatherMMcKay)
Heather has taught in public and private schools in Calgary, Alberta (Canada) over the last 20 years. She is currently serving K-12 students and schools through her position as a literacy specialist with the Calgary Board of Education. Heather continues to be drawn to the wonder of literacy and learning in all of its evolving forms.
Contributor: Dana Murphy (@DanaMurphy68, Murphy’s Law)
Dana Murphy is an instructional coach in Woodridge, IL. She is a contributing writer at Choice Literacy and Lead Literacy. She lives in the south suburbs of Chicago with her husband and two daughters.
Contributor: Michelle Olson (@molson414, Books on the Back Porch)
Michelle Olson is an elementary reading specialist and has also taught first, second, and third grades. She earned her Bachelor’s degree in early childhood and elementary education, her Master’s degree in literacy, and most recently, earned her doctorate in curriculum and instruction with a specialization in literacy. She is an avid reader and loves teaching writing! There is nothing better than seeing students as they find joy in the reading and writing processes! She lives in the Chicago suburbs with her husband and her two daughters.
Contributor: Annie Palmer (@palmeram, Breaking Education Barriers)
Annie Palmer is a K-12 literacy coach and curriculum facilitator in the Smithville School District in Smithville, Missouri. Spending ten years in the classroom and four years as a coach, she has walked side-by-side with other literacy leaders. Her work includes facilitating the design and implementation of a district literacy plan with the help of teachers, coaches and administration, and numerous student-centered coaching cycles with teachers in kindergarten through twelfth grade.
Contributor: Dana Piercy (@danapiercy)
Dana is an Oklahoman native. She received a Bachelors of Science in Education from The University of Oklahoma and a Masters in Leadership and Administration from Oklahoma State University. Dana has been a teacher for seventeen years. She is currently teaching/working in a Title 1 school. Her love for education and children brought me to a different field in education…within the past couple years, Dana has transitioned to a literacy coach.
Contributor: Rita Platt (@ritaplatt)
Rita is a National Board Certified Teacher and a self-proclaimed #edudork with master’s degrees in reading, library, and leadership. Her experience includes teaching learners in remote Alaskan villages, inner cities, and rural communities. She currently is a school principal, teaches graduate courses for the Professional Development Institute and writes for We Teach We Learn and MiddleWeb.
Contributor: Rhonda Precourt (@LiteracyPages, literacypages.wordpress.com)
Rhonda Precourt is a Reading Recovery teacher/literacy specialist teaching in upstate New York. In her 19 years of teaching, she has been a Kindergarten teacher, 2nd grade teacher, literacy coach, and instructional coach. She is also a National Board Certified teacher. She considers her year in training for Reading Recovery to be an eye-opening experience and the best professional development she has ever had. She has had a passion for reading since childhood. She has been enjoying blogging at Literacy Pages with her friend and colleague Gen Arcovio.
Contributor: Lee Shupe (The Misinformed Life of Abe Table)
Lee spent several years as a middle school language arts and social studies teacher, five years as an instructional coach, a few years teaching alternative education, and is currently teaching middle school math. His wife of 26 years, who he adores, teaches kindergarten. In his spare time, Lee is engineering sound for his church and writing fiction.
Contributor: Virginia Soukup (@VLSoukup)
Virginia is an Elementary Instructional Coach for Union Public Schools in Tulsa OK. She has served as a Kindergarten teacher, an Elementary Interventionist in the Native American Program, an Elementary Reading Specialist, and an Academic Specialist for the Union Carrera Program. Virginia received a Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees from Northeastern State University. Virginia believes every child has the right to receive a high-quality education.
Have a passion for literacy and leadership? Interested in contributing to this collaborative space? Fill out the form below for more information.