BCLCILA is the provincial council of the International Literacy Association (an organization of nearly 100,000 members dedicated to the improvement of reading instruction and the promotion of lifetime reading habits) and is affiliated with the Canadian Network of International Literacy Association Councils (CNILAC).


Happy New Year Literacy Leaders!

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The promise of a new year is before us. A time for brand new resolutions for 2023 or to jump start resolutions that have been pledged in years gone by and forgotten by the end of January. For the British Columbia Literacy Council, our resolutions each year for many years have been consistent.

  1. Look for ways to support the literacy goals of the International Literacy Association within in British Columbia.
  2. To provide the leadership opportunities for educators to network and support each other in the task of supporting the literacy development of their students, school community and the larger literacy community.

I am honoured to have been invited to be a part of the Nominating Committee for the International Literacy Association as one of the international members. It is inspiring to see the commitment to improving opportunities and literacy practices worldwide continues undaunted by the impact of COVID.

Working in a COVID context has been an uphill challenge, to say the very least. It has come with wins and losses as educators in British Columbia and the rest of the world, have been taxed with their own personal challenges at home, as well as the fear, frustration, and stresses of their school community. Medals are warranted! We have certainly learned that online meetings do not come close to the support, collaboration and inspiration of face-to-face meetings and professional development.

I just recently completed a pilot project providing 3 weeks of daily literacy sessions for 3- and 4-year-old children. In talking to parents, I went back to the demonstration of Matthew Arnold's notion of the "empty vessel". As I poured sand into the jar and explained that learning does not happen this way, it was as if I was presenting newly discovered information. Online programs, tutoring for young children, workbooks and programs promising immediate results gained leverage in a COVID world. More than ever, educators are needed to support parents in understanding that listening, speaking, reading, and writing are communicative processes that develop over time rather than memorization exercises that can be quickly mastered and checked off a list. We have our work cut out for us.

BC Literacy Council has plans for 2023

Upcoming February Leadership Workshop:

We are excited that Rob Tierney, Robert will be joining us for our leadership conference. Dr. Tierney is an international educator whose passion is for developing research partnerships to address local literacy needs with educators in different countries. He began his career as a classroom teacher in Australia, then proceeded to work in the United States, Canada, and China. He is most familiar to us from his publications and time as dean emeritus and professor emeritus of Language and Literacy Education at the University of British Columbia. Stay tuned for more information.

New Members Book Club:

Our vice-president, Larkyn Froese, is in the process of organizing a book club of some of our newer BCLCILA members to inspire some good conversation with a social twist.

BC Lit Council Booth at Tidal WAV The Wild About Outdoor Learning Festival

Due to the big success of the BC Lit Council scavenger hunts and book give away at the Tidal WAV (Wild About Vancouver) in Stanley Park last spring, we will again be part of this Outdoor Learning Festival on Saturday, May 27th. Larkyn Froese is chairing the committee that will be exploring ideas to promote literacy and indigenous ways of knowing in an outdoor context. Despite the torrential rain last year, it was a fun event that brought out over 400 participants.

Join Us

The Executive Council of BC Literacy Council values new ideas and new members. We aspire for our council to mirror the population we serve. Participation in the BC Literacy Council means different things to different people. It looks good on a resume. The volunteerism ends in some purposeful programs and projects. However, throughout my career I have most valued the space to step back and reflect on my work as a literacy educator with other people interested in doing the same thing. Those conversations started at meetings but continued in hot tubs, coffee shops, restaurants, beaches, and parks. Please consider joining us and bring colleagues interested in building a literacy network and continuing down a rich and purposeful path.

Please reach out for any more information or input into future directions. All the very best for the coming year!

    Carrie Froese
    President BC Literacy Council of the International Literacy Association

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Thanks to all the people who attended the Annual General Meeting of the British Columbia Literacy Council online and in person at the Sylvia Hotel in Vancouver. The new updated bylaws were passed. Thanks to Karen Addie, Garth C. Brooks and Mike Bowden for their work on bringing this to completion. Thanks to Kathryn Ransdell for showing up to take minutes one last time.

We are please to welcome Susan Ruzic to the BCLCILA Executive Committee. She was a teacher in Coquitlam for many years and may be familiar from her social justice work with the British Columbia Teachers' Federation. She is very interested in how literacy can become a pathway for Indigenous, Black, people of colour, LGBTQ2S+, neurodivergent and people with disabilities to break barriers and participate in our journey forward.

Thanks to the members willing to continue to serve on the BCLCILA Executive and their efforts to invite others in. See the Meet the Executive tab for pictures and bios.

Thank you to Garth C. Brooks for his long service and contributions to our provincial council. We wish you the best of luck as you focus your attention on the International Literacy Association Canadian Special Interest Group (CSIG) and local politics.

Thanks to Kelly Patrick for her work as Member at Large and Membership Coordinator. Your session on Literacy Through Cookbooks will go down as your piece de resistance!

Thanks to Kathryn Ransdell for her time as secretary. We appreciated your thoroughness with minutes, your perceptions as a parent and tutor of students who struggle with literacy acquisition. Your contribution on our Graphic Novel panel was inspired. We may have to invite you back for a repeat session. All the best in Omaha, Nebraska!

Plans for 2022-2023

The newly elected executive met for a working meeting immediately after the AGM 22.

Save the Date:

Saturday, May 27th, 2023

BCLCILA will return to The Tidal WAV Outdoor Learning Festival

Our Vice-President, Larkyn Froese, will again be spearheading this very popular and successful event. Despite torrential rain, 400 kids showed up in Stanley Park and the BCLCILA Booth was one of the favourites. In 2023, BCLCILA booth will again include a scavenger hunt and a give-away of outdoor learning books. This year BCLCILA will also be sponsoring two B.C. authors to do book talks featuring their books in the covered picnic area at Second Beach at this Wild About Outdoor Learning Festival. Stay tuned for more details.

Literacy Speaker and Dialogue

After our AGM and working meeting, we headed to the restaurant in the Sylvia Hotel for dinner and to enjoy the live musicians. Our place by the fire, looking out at the ocean and the snow added to the ambiance. The discussion meandered through the "Science of Reading", "The Joy" required to created lifelong readers, Indigenous authors and our own reading. We're hoping to be able to facilitate some of these rich discussion with BCLCILA members. Face to face is the best! Stay tuned.

Supporting Educators in the Work

COVID, inflation, and increased job stress have made it challenging for teachers to do their jobs let alone participate in meaningful professional development. We are looking for ways that we can support the literacy learning of educators in B.C. Remember that all International Literacy Association members living in British Columbia are automatically BCLCILA members. We have put aside money in the budget to implement new ideas this year. Please send suggestions to bcliteracyila@gmail.com Stay tuned for more opportunities.

Annual General Meeting, 2022

British Columbia Literacy Council of the International Literacy Association

Wednesday, November 30, 2022
5:00 6:00 PM
Pendrell Room

Sylvia Hotel - On English Bay
1154 Gilford Street, Vancouver, BC
(Free Parking underground; entrance in back of hotel)

Or join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 628 0108 9106, Passcode: 697073

Documents for download:
AGM 2022 Agenda
AGM 2022 Proposed By-laws
BCLCIRA Nomination form

See also the 2021 AGM minutes: agm-2021_minutes.pdf.

Congrats to Dr. Judith Scott for induction into Reading Hall of Fame

from inquire2empower.ca/2022/08/17/congrats-to-dr-judith-scott-for-induction-into-reading-hall-of-fame:

Congrats Dr. Judith Scott aka Judy Scott

The British Columbia Literacy Association is proud to announce that Dr. Judith Scott is one of five 2022 inductees into The Reading Hall of Fame. On December 1st, she will join the 136 living members in the RHF and will receive one of the highest honours bestowed on literacy scholars worldwide. Dr. Scott recently retired from the University of California Santa Cruz in the Department of Education where she taught for 22 years. While at UCSC, she served as the Chair of Academic Senate Committees on Teaching and Career Advising, the Chair of the Indigenous Faculty Networking program, the Director of the Vocabulary Innovations in Education Consortium, and Principal Investigator of the Central California Writing Project. She has also been the Chair of Undergraduate Programs in Education, Graduate Director for the Ph.D. program, Chair of the Language, Literacy and Culture specialization as well as the Co-Director of a Professional Development Institute in California that served over 350 new and veteran teachers for three years, focused on English Language learning using teacher inquiry and coaching. In her spare time, she was the Principal Investigator of four large grants funded by the United States Department of Education/National Center for Educational Research and the State of California.

In Canada, the British Columbia Literacy Council proudly embraces Judy as our own. She was a well-loved member of the Faculty of Education at Simon Fraser University from 1991 2000. She was also instrumental in creating the Early Literacy Network of 52 school districts in B.C. and active in our International Reading Association chapter. Throughout her career, Judy has been known for her support of classroom teachers and recognized their pivotal role in putting research into practice. Her focus has always been on how to evoke a sense of playful discovery in the teaching and learning of words. We are thrilled for her work to be acknowledged and for her to take her place alongside educators such as Ken and Yetta Goodman, Rob Tierney, P. David Pearson, Shirley Brice-Heath, Annmarie Palincsar, Allan Luke, Vicki Purcell-Gates and David Olson.

An appreciation of the power of words has always been part of Judy's life. Her stay-at-home Mom was an avid reader with an exceptionally well-developed vocabulary. Her Dad is an enrolled member of the Cherokee Nation and use to read the dictionary on a regular basis to improve his vocabulary. His parents instilled in him that proficiency in English was the way to success. His time in boarding school in Oklahoma, where one of his seven siblings died, fueled a keen desire to create a better life for himself. He recognized early on that you couldn't change first impressions, but you could change minds when you opened your mouth. Judy was a middle child. With an older brother who became a lawyer and a younger sister who became a teacher, good communication skills were needed to survive.

Judy's interest in words followed her into her graduate studies with Richard Anderson and her work with Bill Nagy at the Center for the Study of Reading. Her work on vocabulary acquisition and blending vocabulary instruction with effective teacher education within the context of language, literacy and culture has received international recognition throughout her career, but this is a particularly note-worthy honour.

Since retirement, Judy has pivoted into working as an educational consultant in the private sector. This has allowed her to focus on the work she believes will make the biggest impact. Her first children's book, When the Mission Bells Rang, was written in consultation with the Amah Mutsun Tribal Band. It tells the story of colonization through an Indigenous lens using the voices of the animals in the Monterey Bay area whose lives were disrupted by the Spanish Missions along with those of the Indigenous peoples. The Mutsun names for animals are used in this story and underline the sophistication of the Amah Mutsun culture that had evolved in the area for thousands of years before the Spaniards arrived in the late 1700's. The inclusion of the Mutsun vocabulary speaks volumes and underlines the power that words carry.

For more information go to: The Reading Hall of Fame

Wild About Reading

The Wild About Vancouver Tidal WAV (pronounced "wave") Outdoor Festival is set and ready to go next Friday, June 3rd from 9:30 am to 3:00 pm in beautiful Stanley Park at Second Beach / Ceperley Park.

See more about it at inquire2empower.ca/2022/05/18/wild-about-reading
and inquire2empower.ca/2022/05/29/wild-about-reading-revisited.

Executive Committee for 2021-2022

    Past President Mike Bowden (appointed)
    President Carrie Froese
    Vice-President Larkyn Froese
    Secretary Kathyrn Self Ransdell
    Treasurer Linda Klassen
    Membership Coordinator - Linda Klassen
    Member-at-Large - Garth Brooks
    Member-at-Large - Kelly Patrick
    ILA BC Provincial Coordinator - Dr. Karen Addie

    see pics and bios

Thank you to all members who put their names forward for the Nov. election. Your efforts towards building a literacy presence in British Columbia through the BCLCILA are very much appreciated.

Literacy Learning at the Tidal WAV 2022

We are excited to announce that the BC Literacy Council of the International Literacy Association will be hosting a BCLCILA literacy tent and sponsoring a placed based scavenger hunt at the Tidal WAV event at Second Beach in Stanley Park on June 3, 2022. Registered students will be earn a book on completion of the scavenger hunt (while supplies last) and teachers will have the chance to win draw prizes to support their lessons in the outdoor classroom.

Stay tuned for more information on registration. Contact us if you are interested in volunteering at this event.

Annual General Meeting, 2021

Download minutes: agm-2021_minutes.pdf.

British Columbia Literacy Council of the International Literacy Association

Thursday, November 25, 2021

6:00 7:00 PM

Pendrell Room

Sylvia Hotel - On English Bay
1154 Gilford Street, Vancouver, BC
(Free Parking underground; entrance in back of hotel)

Entering the World of Graphic Novels - A Panel Presentation
Posted on January 19th 2020

Hosted by Carrie Froese - President ReadingBC / BC Literacy Council of the International Literacy Association / Principal - David Livingstone Elementary School. Check out https://carriefroese.wordpress.com/2019/11/11/entering-the-world-of-graphic-novels/

A panel discussion about the world of graphic novels including to date:

Trent Doiron - Youth and Family Worker / Graphic Novel Enthusiast

Anna Found - Grade 7 student & Graphic Novel Enthusiast

Kelly Patrick - Secondary Librarian, ReadingBC / BCLCILA Executive member

Kathryn Ransdell - parent / Orton Gillingham tutor in training

Date Thursday, February 27, 2020 6:45 - 8:00 pm

Place - David LIvingstone Elementary Library

Refreshments and draw prizes included.

Free registration through Eventbrite:


Odyssey ProD Conference 2020
Posted on January 19th 2020


A Journey Started with Indigenous Reconciliation through Children’s Literature & Voice.

On Friday, February 14, I had the privilege of addressing an audience of 30 at the Odyssey 2020 conference with the Langley SD #35. My workshop explored three children’s stories and books, Flight of the Hummingbird by Michael Nicoll Yahgulanass, Taan’s Moons: A Haida Moon Story by Alison Gear, and The Six Cedar Trees by Margot Landahl and Celestine Aleck and how these stories can be introduced in the classroom to present Indigenous knowledge in ways that honour and celebrates Indigenous gifts. Representing the BCLCILA, the book The Flight of the Hummingbird was the door prize and was also the highlight of the workshop.

Like the hummingbird in the forest fire, it is our time to do what we can to undo the historical regret, that education has been used as a tool of oppression for Indigenous people. Conversation, from the perspective of the animals standing around the fire, centred around politics, environmental issues and most importantly explored ways that education can be a voice for Indigenous reconciliation. Attendees were invited to identify the fire in their own lives that they are making an effort to put out. I shared my own journey with the Aboriginal Education Enhancement Agreement and my exploration of ways to let the story of reconciliation reveal itself through the voices of children.

Linda Klassen is an educator of over 30 years. She is the Principal of Coghlan Fundamental Elementary School in SD #35 and the Vice President of the BC Literacy Council for International Reading Association.

Creativity Through Cookbooks
Posted on January 19th 2020

This event was hosted by BCLCILA members, Kelly Patrick, and Polly Dobie at Point Grey Secondary School. Over 25 educators came together to hear Kelly share her experiences as an author of cookbooks and discuss reading, writing, and talking about food. Thanks to Dianne Martinson for facilitating the break-out session on Travel and cookbooks; to Carrie Froese for facilitating the session about supporting elementary literacy learners; and Polly Dobie for facilitating the session for secondary teachers. And yes, the snacks were wonderful:)