Presenter Materials

Please email with materials for your approved workshop which you would like to make available to NYSEC members. Materials will remain up for one year post-conference.


Poetry Will Save Your Life

NYSEC 2018
Jill Bialosky

This reading group guide for Poetry Will Save Your Life includes an introduction, discussion questions, and ideas for enhancing your book club. The suggested questions are intended to help your reading group find new and interesting angles and topics for your discussion. We hope that these ideas will enrich your conversation and increase your enjoyment of the book.

For Jill Bialosky, certain poems stand out like signposts at pivotal moments in her formative years: the death of her father; first love; leaving home; a sister’s suicide; the birth of a child. Drawing from fifty-one remarkable poems by masters ranging from Robert Frost to Wallace Stevens, Elizabeth Bishop to Gwendolyn Brooks, Shakespeare to Adrienne Rich, this engaging and original memoir celebrates poetry as a means of conveying personal experience and as a source of comfort and intimacy.

Click here to read more, in pdf format.


Diversity Begins at Home: Text Talk for Building Global Citizens

NYSEC 2017
Michelle Peterson-Davis & Michelle G. Bulla

Are you looking for ways to increase the diversity of the texts you use in your classroom? As we prepare students for the 21st century, teachers should include texts that not only mirror experiences students have in their own lives, but also provide a window to the larger world around them. In this workshop, the presenters defined “Global and Diverse Literature” and looked at ways teachers can expand the canon to include a variety of voices and perspectives.

“We have a responsibility to include as many voices and perspectives as possible when exploring issues and ideas. We must not pass judgement against those who have different perspectives and experiences than ours. How are diverse voices represented? What we exclude matters just as much as what we include. Whose voice is missing? The absence of a voice is a judgement against it.”

~ from Freedom of Speech by Donalyn Miller (Nerdy Book Club Blog)

Video: Mirrors, windows and sliding doors, Dr. Rudine Sims Bishop

We need diverse books because we need books in which children can see reflections of themselves – but also look through and see other worlds.

Video: The danger of a single story, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Our lives, our cultures, are composed of many overlapping stories. Novelist Chimamanda Adichie tells the story of how she found her authentic cultural voice — and warns that if we hear only a single story about another person or country, we risk a critical misunderstanding.