ORONO — The Fifth annual Suzanne W. Cole Reading Recovery and Early Literacy Institute will be held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Thursday, May 20. The conference, which will be conducted virtually via Zoom, will be  hosted by the University Training Center for Reading Recovery and Comprehensive Literacy at the University of Maine. In previous years, the institute has attracted more than 100 reading recovery teachers, literacy coaches and education professionals from across Maine.

University Training Center Reading Recovery trainer emeritus Lori Taylor will offer the keynote address, “Forever Changed: Lessons from Reading Recovery.” Her presentation will examine research findings and personal experiences that illustrate the influence of Reading Recovery on teachers, and teachers as learners. According to Taylor, many who complete the Reading Recovery training say it is the most rigorous and life-changing learning experience of their careers.

Taylor’s professional interests include emergent literacy curriculum, teacher professional development and nonverbal communication in teaching and learning. In addition to her position with the University Training Center, she has worked as a special education teacher, a classroom teacher and as a literacy specialist and coach. She recently returned to the classroom at Camden-Rockport Elementary School.

The University Training Center provides professional development to teacher leaders who train reading recovery teachers in nearly 60 school districts statewide. The reading recovery program supports first-grade students struggling with reading and writing with 12 to 20 weeks of individualized instruction. Over the last two decades, reading recovery has improved the literacy skills of more than 100,000 Maine children.

For more than 20 years, the Galen Cole Family Foundation of Bangor has provided financial support to school districts in Maine that offer reading recovery. The conference, which recognizes the foundation’s contribution to teacher education and child literacy in Maine, is named for Suzanne (Welch) Cole, spouse of the foundation’s benefactor, Galen Cole.

In addition to the keynote, the conference agenda includes morning and afternoon sessions on topics such as the power of word work, the role of auditory perception in monitoring for meaning, scaffolding learning through writing about reading, promoting self-extending literacy learning, and more.

To register and find more information about the conference, visit umaine.edu. To request a reasonable accommodation, contact Kathie Wing at [email protected].

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