Welcome to the second edition of The People Behind the Passion. In this periodic column, you will meet people who promote reading and literacy … often on their own dime. It is a way to celebrate their unique contributions to creating the next generation of readers, and gives you a little bit of insight into what sparked (or powers) their passion for promoting reading. Last but not least, we hope you’ll be inspired. Each feature will include ways you can get involved, either for yourself and your family and/or within your community.
Australian Susan Stephenson is the “hen” behind the chook. She describes herself as “a parent, reader, writer, reviewer, technophile, editor of Literacy Lava, and owner of several dust bunnies, all called Nigel.”
What sparked the passion? Like many of us, Susan walks that microscopic line between passion and obsession! She shares her lifelong passion for children’s literature and literacy on The Book Chook blog. She loves reading and writing, and through her blog and Literacy Lava, she hopes to motivate kids, via their parents, to love it too. Her posts and the magazine are filled with practical, use-anytime ideas for helping kids build their literacy skills in all their forms.
The other egg in Susan’s basket is a love of creative thinking. “Our world needs creative thinkers in every field! I am also fascinated by new technologies. Their potential for providing kids with an authentic audience for their stories is so exciting.”
Who’s the audience?
The primary audience is parents and others who are passionate about children’s literacy. Librarians, for example, have recommended Literacy Lava to their patrons. Susan publishes answers to letters she’s gotten on her website.
How Can I Help?
Follow Susan’s advice: one of the important things parents can do for their children is read with them. Have a shared reading time, writing time, discussion time and a time for creativity every single day. Be open to non-traditional ways of incorporating literacy in your day. It can be as simple as writing a caption under a picture together, or playing memory, or designing your own board game.
Social Media & Contact Information
Susan leverages technology to her advantage and makes herself easily available. The links below connect you with Susan so you can keep up-to-date with her ideas and tips, book reviews, and evaluations of creative literacy tools.
Note: All images used with permission of Susan Stephenson.