Introducing a new strand for 2016 Convention
When I began to plan CATE 2016, I thought first about the voices I wanted to bring to speak to us. I grew up in a house with only five books – three of them were Readers Digest condensed volumes, one was a college text on nursing, and one was The Prophet, by Kahlil Gibran. And that was it. I must have read those books dozens of times, along with anything else I could manage get my hands on. I read the morning edition of the Houston Post and the afternoon edition of the Houston Chronicle. I read Archie comic books. Cereal boxes. And Ladies Home Journal, with a particular affinity for the column Can This Marriage Be Saved? I was that kid in English class that took the anthology home the first weekend of school and read it cover to cover, marveling at the voices I found, and rereading my favorite selections. I grew up hungry to read and in love with the written word, wherever I could find it.
We are in a time of significant change in California and across our nation. The focus on literacy in our schools is moving beyond the novels that we all love, and even beyond the walls of our Language Arts classrooms. Our focus is expanding to include all types of reading and writing that must take place across our campuses and in the world around us. This is exciting to me. We’ve added a new session strand this year, Reading and Writing Across the Disciplines, as schools across the state are working to make reading and writing an expected practice in all classrooms and content areas.
CATE 2016’s Super Sessions feature Kelly Gallagher, Nancy Frey, and Doug Fisher, leading literacy experts and practitioners that will help us to become even better at developing and sharpening the literacy habits of our students. Additionally, our five major speakers, Dennis Lehane, Tom Lichtenheld, Ernest Morrell, Miriam Pawel, and Hector Tobar, demonstrate the unique ways that literacy permeates and impacts our world. The voice of the novelist, biographer, television writer, playwright, journalist, book critic, historian, illustrator, media producer, and academic writer are all represented in their collective bodies of work. I’m excited about bringing these writers to CATE because their voices are just a sampling of those our students can embody when they leave our classrooms to take their places in the world.
Our 2016 convention theme is Inspiring Literate Lives I can’t think of anything more thrilling or powerful that we do as teachers. Please join us in Costa Mesa this February as we come together to this end.
— Jan Stallones, 2016 Convention Chair