Thursday, November 3, 2011

Looking Ahead to NCTE & ALAN

One of my favorite experiences over the last three years has been my yearly attendance at the ALAN Workshop in November. This workshop is the highlight of my year and reinvigorates me as a teacher (and I get a box full of books to bring back to my classroom). ALAN is the Assembly on Literature for Adolescents of NCTE (the National Council of Teachers of English) so it happens right after the NCTE Annual Convention. I first attended in San Antonio in 2008, then Philadelphia in 2009, and Orlando in 2010. This year, it's pretty much local, as the 100th anniversary of the NCTE Annual Convention is in Chicago - and that means I not only get to attend my fourth ALAN Workshop, but also get to go to my first NCTE Annual Convention, which I am so looking forward to.
The chance to see nationally-renowned speakers, the best in the business of English education, a slew of authors, and meet so many of the teachers I've been growing my personal learning network with on twitter, all makes this a super-exciting event to look forward to for me. I can't wait to see what NCTE has in store for us.

So, in anticipation of being there in only two short weeks, I wanted to share the list of authors (from the ALAN website) that will be speaking at this year's ALAN Workshop. It is an amazing list, and I am so excited to meet so many of them (and I always discover some authors I hadn't heard of before, but have great books and fabulous things to say).

M.T. Anderson will deliver the keynote address at the Workshop, and Jacqueline Woodson will serve as the 2011 ALAN Breakfast speaker.

Several fantastic authors will speak on Monday, including Angela Johnson, Walter Dean Myers, Janet Tashjian, Sean Beaudoin, John Green, Matt de la Peña, Leslie Margolis, Jennifer Nielsen, Sarah Weeks, Rita Williams-Garcia, Sarah Dessen, Lauren Myracle, Cheryl Rainfield, Andrew Smith, Paul Yee, Kazu Kibuishi, Elizabeth Scott, Abby McDonald, and Laurie Halse Anderson.  The evening will conclude with a reception honoring the finalists for the Amelia Elizabeth Walden Award (AEWA)—Kristen Chandler, Matt de la Peña, Matthew Quick, Jordan Sonnenblick, and Francisco X. Stork.

Tuesday will feature an equally impressive collection of authors, including Chris Crutcher, Cara Chow, Sharon Draper, J.L. Powers, Matthew Quick, Kenneth Oppel, Jennifer Donnelly, Neal Schusterman, Coe Booth, B.A. Binns, Simone Elkeles, Stephanie Perkins, Sara Zarr, Jay Asher, Carolyn Mackler, James Dashner, Megan McCafferty, Veronica Roth, Dom Testa, Katie Alender, Beth Fantaskey, Michelle Hodkin, Thanhha Lai, and David Levithan.

I look forward to sharing some of my exciting author experiences with you when I'm back - and as long as my battery lasts, my twitter stream will have my favorite moments and most inspirational insights.


  1. I'm excited, too! I wish I was able to attend Monday and Tuesday. :( I'll be there Saturday morning for the ALAN breakfast at least. I haven't read anything by Jacqueline Woodson but the name sounds familiar. Will have to check out her books before I go. There are some amazing authors coming that I would love to meet! You'll have a blast! :)

  2. I'm just doing NCTE, not the ALAN workshops. But I'm still extremely excited.