The EBMA 41st Annual Meeting
dawned bright this
past week in the lovely Tucson, Arizona. We are always excited to attend this
annual gathering, and this year was no different. Diversity was the theme that
guided all the panels and presentations that we were privileged to attend, and
they were each challenging and in their own way. We want to share some of our
highlights from the week and give a few shout outs to the great people we saw
along the way.
two breakfast educational sessions, the first of which was Wednesday morning’s
session entitled “Six Ways to Know If You Are Culturally Responsive.” Dr.
Sharroky Hollie presented, and proved to be a provocative speaker, challenging our
thoughts on what diversity, culture, ethnicity really are. Dr. Hollie is
the co-founder of Culture and Language Academy of Success
and the executive
director of the Center for Culturally Responsive Teaching and Learning. His
mission is to provide professional development for educators who want to become
culturally responsive. By the end of his presentation, the outstanding
point was that everyone must understand themselves (and their preconceived
notions of terms like culture and ethnicity) before incorporating them into
teaching, publishing programs, or classroom collections. Throughout the
presentation, it was obvious that Dr. Hollie is all about validating and
affirming others. Really that was just the tip of the iceberg, so if you are interested
to see and hear more, check out this video
session was called “Diversity in Action.” It was a panel of three experts
and a moderator. The three panelists were Judy Chiasson, an administrator
in the LA Unified School District
, Andrew Medlar, the Chicago Public Library
Assistant Chief for Technology, Content, and Innovation, and Troy Fresch, who
is an Assistant Principal at Pioneer Middle School
in Tustin CA. Their
discussion was about the ways diversity comes into play in their various fields
– from district-wide programs to reduce bullying and homophobia (Chiasson), to
collection development (Medlar), and working with a very diverse group of
middle school students (Fresch). It was an interesting program, and it
proved encouraging to hear about the practical ways that everyone in our field
is pursuing diversity.
lunch speakers were Doreen Rappaport
(author) and Kadir Nelson
the working relationship between authors and illustrators, and Thursday’s
dinner speaker was Kwame Alexander
, the 2015 Newbery medal winner. He was
a fantastic speaker, and we enjoyed hearing the stories he had tell about how
he got involved (reluctantly) in the publishing world.
Even with all
of the compelling speakers we were able to hear from, as usual EBMA was also a
wonderful opportunity to meet with our wholesale partners. Our meetings at EBMA
are always intense and productive, and we love this time to forge relationships
with these partners who do so much to provide our books to school systems and
everyone in the education world.
We were also
so excited to preview some of our new titles that are coming out Fall of 2016!
It was great to see how well received these new stories were, and everyone was
especially excited for Janet Nolan
and a Half Tons of Steel.
year for the books, and we’ll be seeing everyone next year!
Labels: Conferences, News and Events