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L4GA Podcasts


L4GA Podcasts

​​​​​LaDonna Collins, Executive Director, Rome Floyd County Commission on Children and Youth 

LaDonna Collins spoke with Dr. Roberta Gardner about Books, Barbers & Beauticians (BBB). This youth literacy initiative is headed by the Rome Floyd County Commission on Children and Youth and enables youth to read and engage in healthy language nutrition while receiving haircare services at participating BBB Barber/Beauty Salon Locations in Rome, GA.  Youth get to choose from diverse reading selections, read to their stylist, and receive incentives such as snacks and gift cards. The goal of BBB is to increase the number of books read by BBB youth, increase the language nutrition of BBB Youth, and create a home library for BBB youth. BBB is sponsored by the Rome Floyd County Commission on Children and Youth, Rome Noon Optimist Club, Amerigroup and CareSource. LaDonna mentions grant opportunities in the podcast such as those at the Sand​ra Deal Center for Early Language and Literacy and  Dollar General . For grants from Care Management Organizations (CMO) such as Amerigroup, CareSource and Peach State, reach out to the local Community Relations Representative for each CMO. Local civic clubs such as Optimist Club, Kiwanis Club, Rotary, Book Clubs, etc., might also offer grant opportunities. Thank you, LaDonna!​

Adrian Douglas, 4th Grade Teacher 

There are a variety of trends and issues that impact the daily lives, processes and practices of educators, students, and families. They might take the form of standards and guidelines that expand or diminish possibilities for literacy development and practice. Dr. Roberta Gardner (Kennesaw State University), Dr. Meghan Welch (GaDOE Program Specialist), and Holly Schmidt-Davis (GaDOE Program Specialist) spoke with Adrian Douglas, a teacher in the Metro Atlanta area. As we think about literacy focused school, family and community partnerships, we wanted to consider how teachers, students, and families experience literacy in relationship to various trends, issues, and policies within classrooms, homes, to help address some of the partnership needs and supports to provide rich literacy experiences that are equitable for all children and families.

​​Alice Ensley, Dalton Public Schools ​

​​Dr. Roberta Gardner (Kennesaw State University) and Dr. Meghan Welch (GaDOE Program Specialist) spoke with Alice Ensley, District Literacy Coordinator for Dalton Public Schools (DPS). Alice outlines some of the DPS experience during the last few months of the 2019-2020 school year. She talks about connecting with the students virtually (including Internet access), connecting with students that are multi-lingual, how DPS is able to distribute paper books to students, and community partnerships (like public libraries) that support students. In addition to the Big Red Reads program through DPS, Alice is also the founder of Books for Change USA​.

​​Georgia Home Classroom​

​​​​​​​​​​​​​The Curriculum and Instruction division at the Georgia Department of Education teamed up with Georgia Public Broadcasting to develop Georgia Home Classroom. This partnership worked quickly to align the Georgia Standards of Excellence to existing GPB digital and broadcast resources. While students are learning from home during a global pandemic, the Georgia Home Classroom is a trusted set of resources accessible to all. Justin Hill, GaDOE Director of Curriculum and Instruction, Laura Evans, GPB Director of Education, and Meghan Welch, GaDOE Program Specialist, discuss how the project came about and where teachers, parents, and students can access the resources. ​

​​Partnering With Your Local Library 

We recently sat down with Roberta Gardner, Assistant Professor of Reading and Literacy Education at Kennesaw State University, and Elaine Black, Director Of Youth Services at the Georgia Public Library Service, to bring you our first L4GA Podcast. In this episode, we talk about school districts partnering with the local library. Dr. Gardner asks questions informed by her research-rich background and Elaine Black brings to the discussion her wide knowledge of the GPLS – including partnership examples Georgia school districts. See this one-page pdf with links to resources mentioned during the podcast.

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Literacy in the Laundromat

 Dr. Roberta Gardner and I sat down for a phone interview with Dr. Susan Neuman to discuss her research project around literacy in laundromats. You can find the executive summary of the project here. We discuss the “literacy events” that her research team observed when they placed simple and available resources in laundromats in New York City. Children – who might have been in the laundromat for TWO HOURS – entered the welcoming (couch, rug, play kitchen) space and were able to look at books and/or play with other literacy activities such as magnetic letters or puzzles. In a second round of observations, local librarians visited the laundromats weekly to facilitate activities. Think of the possibilities! The podcast conversation is informative and really sparks ideas on how this work can be done in Georgia.

Thank you to the Georgia State University Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning for the space and expertise while recording. Music is from​ ​


  L4GA Contact Information

Performance Plan Technical Assistance  
Use the link to schedule a 30 minute Go To Meeting session to discuss revisions to your literacy plan submissions.

Julie Morrill 
Program Manager, L4GA
Phone: 404-425-2975
Mobile:  706-473-3159 
Elizabeth Walker
Program Specialist, L4GA


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