L is for Louisville and Literacy


Louisville is for LiteracyWhen I tell people that I live in Louisville, Kentucky, they immediately ask about one of three things:

• college basketball (go U of L Cardinals!)

• the Kentucky Derby (“fastest 2 minutes in sports”)

• and the Humana Festival of Plays.

And while I am asked about those particular events and share what I know, friends and family are also excited to spend time on a “Bluegrass and BBQ” tour of the city (and state) as well as take a lookie-loo at the giant, gold, statue of David that stands outside Hotel 21c. It is…breathtaking, to say the least.

But Louisville is also home to the National Center for Family Literacy, a non-profit dedicated to “inspiring and engaging families in learning together.” This year their annual conference is being held here in Louisville with a focus on intergenerational education and community literacy. On April 28-30, educators from all over the country will gather to share best-practices and engage in new dialogues with the focus to help strengthen families and community through literacy opportunities. NCFL offers many professional development courses as well as on-line training courses.

This year’s conference will also feature keynotes from James Patterson, Susan Pimental, and C. C. Chapman. There will be concurrent sessions on

• Adult Education (How do you know your students are “getting it?”)

• Children’s Education (The Power of Books: Using Stories to Encourage and Motivate)

• Common Core State Standards

• Community Literacy


• Parent Engagement (Connecting With the Toughest to Reach)

to name a few. With over to choose from and a conference taking place in the middle of Derby Festival activities, there will plenty for educators and community leaders to partake in, all of which will enhance learning opportunities when they return to their schools.They also host online learning opportunities with support from Verizon and with support from Toyota help bridge gaps in literacy with English as Second Language Learners. And NCFL is always thrilled to share Wonderopolis, a unique learning engagement website that is utilized in classrooms and at home alike. Ever “wonder” what goes into making those two minutes on the track so magical? Wonderopolis no doubt has the answer!

Certainly it might not be possible for you, personally, to attend, but no doubt as an engaged member in your child’s school community, you would want your teachers, literacy leaders, and administrators to know about this conference so they can attend and bring back best practices and innovation into your classrooms.

So this April I’m adding “literacy” to the list of things Louisville is known for. After all, a book is one of the best adventures you’ll ever partake in, hands down.


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