Sparks in the Dark

Session notes from “Sparks in the Dark,” presented by Todd Nesloney.

What was the speaker’s main message?

Creating a culture of literacy on campus.

What was the speaker’s best quote?

“Literacy is the foundation for everything. Leaders are readers, and readers are leaders!”

What were the top ideas from the session?

Book prom, wrapping up books and gifting every kid a stack of books, end-of-the-year book shelfie pictures, secret society of readers, giving every kid $100 to shop at a book fair.

What is one strategy that you will implement immediately?

Daily book talks!

What is one strategy that will help you with instructional leadership?

Encouraging all staff to read and advertise what they are reading.

What is one idea that you want to learn more about?

Secret society of readers

I can’t wait to tell my teachers about this idea:

Connecting with authors to get them to partner with teachers.

What are some relevant or surprising stats you learned?

Putting books in kids hands and getting them to read books they are interested in during the summer benefits learning and has a stronger impact on academic progress than summer school/summer tutoring.

Liz Garden is principal of H.P. Clough Elementary School in Mendon, Massachusetts.