Structured Literacy: All Children Can Read

2020 Fox Reading ConferenceOur 2020 Fox Reading Conference continues our focus on Structured Literacy™ principles of direct, explicit, systematic, and diagnostic instruction. Structured Literacy integrates instruction in phonology, sound-symbol relationships, syllables, morphology, syntax, and semantics to support reading comprehension. Three nationally recognized literacy experts will share  Join us for a day of research-based knowledge and instructional methods that support reading skill development for all students.

Keynote Address

Louisa Moats
Teaching Reading IS Rocket Science: What Skilled Teachers Know and Do

Session 1

Louisa Moats
Explicit Language Instruction is the Heart of Structured Literacy

Session 2

Louise Spear-Swerling
Contrasting Structured Literacy Approaches with Typical Literacy Practices

Session 3

Margie B. Gillis
One Teacher at a Time: Supporting Teachers' Knowledge and Practice of Structured Literacy Instruction

Dr. Louisa Moats        Dr. Louise Spear-Swerling   Dr. Margie Gillis

Louisa Moats

Louise Spear-Swerling

Margie Gillis

Louisa Moats, Ed.D., has been a teacher, psychologist, researcher, graduate school faculty member, and author of many influential scientific journal articles, books, and policy papers on the topics of reading, spelling, language, and teacher preparation. She was Co-Principal Investigator of an NICHD Early Interventions Project in Washington, D.C., public schools and Principal Investigator on two small business innovation research (SBIR) grants from the National Institutes of Health. In addition, she led the committee that developed the International Dyslexia Association’s Knowledge and Practice Standards for Teachers of Reading. Dr. Moats developed her current approach to teacher training, called LETRS, from her experiences as an instructor at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, St. Michael’s College in Vermont, the Dartmouth Medical School Department of Psychiatry, and the University of Texas, Houston.

Dr. Moats’ awards include the prestigious Samuel T. and June L. Orton award from the International Dyslexia Association for outstanding contributions to the field; the Eminent Researcher Award from Learning Disabilities Australia; and the Benita Blachman award from the Reading League.

Louise Spear-Swerling, Ph.D., is Professor Emerita at Southern Connecticut State University in New Haven CT. Her research interests focus on children’s reading development and literacy difficulties, as well as teacher preparation in reading, and she has published widely on these topics. Dr. Spear-Swerling’s most recent book is The power of RTI and reading profiles: A blueprint for solving reading problems, published by Brookes. She also is a member of several journal editorial boards, including those for Annals of Dyslexia, Teaching Exceptional Children, and Reading Psychology. In 2009 she served on the working group for the International Dyslexia Association that produced national IDA professional standards for teachers of reading.

Dr. Spear-Swerling prepared both general and special educators to teach reading using Structured Literacy approaches for many years. Her reading methods course included a field component in which teacher candidates tutored struggling readers in a local public school under her direct supervision. Currently she consults regularly for Connecticut school districts, mostly on cases involving students with severe or persistent literacy difficulties, including dyslexia. She is also centrally involved in writing a major revision of the state guidelines on identification of children with dyslexia and other learning disabilities.

Margie B. Gillis, Ed.D is a Certified Academic Language Therapist who became interested in reading while at the University of Connecticut where she studied with Isabelle Liberman. In 2009, Margie founded Literacy How, Inc. a non-profit organization, to provide professional development opportunities for teachers on how best to implement research-based reading practices in the classroom. As president of Literacy How and as a Research Affiliate at Haskins Laboratories, Margie creates new opportunities to empower teaching excellence.

In 2010, Margie founded the Anne E. Fowler Foundation to continue to work of her mentor Anne Fowler. The Foundation supports scholarships for teachers for graduate work in reading and language development. She is the co-founder and former president of Smart Kids with Learning Disabilities, the former president of the CT Branch of the International Dyslexia Association, a board member of the Dyslexia Society of CT and New Alliance Foundation, and a professional advisor for Understood and ReadWorks.