For the Love of Lit

November 14, 2018
7:00pm Eastern Time
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Teachers! We are bringing The Great American Read to your classroom! Join your peers from across the country as we explore unique strategies for engaging young readers. How do you engage students with your own passion for literature? This session is set to reignite your excitement for books and help kindle a love of literature in your students.

This is the last in a four part series designed especially for English Language Arts teachers, and was created FOR educators BY educators. With an emphasis on fun, engaging, accessible, and free tools for classrooms, this series will highlight techniques for engaging learners through essential communication skills, and present ideas for enhancing teaching practice through activities, projects, passion, and a connection to literature. PBS will provide a certificate of attendance for each one hour virtual professional learning event.

More about this Professional Learning Series:

This event is organized by PBS, your local PBS station, and presenting partners. By registering, you are allowing these event organizers to contact you.

This virtual professional learning opportunity is powered by OVEE: a shared media viewing experience. Created by ITVS and funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), OVEE combines quality HD media and livestream content with the community-building conversation of social media in a single-screen experience.

Through OVEE, filmmakers, educators, public media stations and other partners create online screenings that bring together fans, students, subject experts and special guests to watch streaming media and chat live in a virtual theater. The OVEE chat enables them to discuss the topic, share resources, and ask questions of panelists and experts featured in the video.

Video Descriptions

Love of Lit: Welcome Card

Love of Lit: Closing Card

60 minutes


  • Nora Mohamed


  • Heather Gauck

    Heather Gauck, a special education teacher has taught for Grand Rapids Public Schools for more than two decades. She recently became National Board Certified as a Exceptional Needs Specialist. She is the organizer and leader for this team of 8 educators statewide that created Innovation Classroom. This team is being funded by Mark Zuckerberg's StartUp Foundation on integrating technology into the classroom. Most recently she was picked as a Teacher Champion Fellow to work with education policy. She is one of twenty-four teachers who sit on the Michigan Teacher Leadership Council. She was also one of 9 finalists for the United States Department of Education Classroom Teacher Ambassador Fellowship. She is passionate about giving a voice to the usual voiceless students who struggle daily with school. Technology that is integrated appropriately can open up a world of support, excitement and higher standards for all learners and educators in classrooms worldwide.

  • Larissa Wright-Elson

    Larissa Wright-Elson is the English and Language Arts Curriculum Coordinator for the Anchorage School District. She holds a master's degree in educational technology, is a Google for Education Certified Trainer, and is National Board Certified in Adolescent & Young Adult English/Language Arts. Her experience includes 18 years in the classroom teaching awesome students in grades 7 through 12, writing curriculum, and supporting teachers with technology integration. Larissa was the 2016 lead PBS Digital Innovator.

  • Gary Abud, Jr.

    Gary Abud, Jr. is an award-winning educator and double cornea transplant recipient who, since having his sight restored, was moved to use his teaching gifts to make science fun for kids. He is the author of Science With Scarlett, a children's book series about a young girl scientist and her teddy bear assistant who do experiments with the reader. The first book in the series — What Color Will It Be? — is all about how the eye sees color (available early 2019). Gary lives with his family near Detroit and writes to inspire children, like his preschool daughter, to love science. When he's not writing, Gary is an educational consultant at Saga Educators, Inc., specializing in ADHD, where he is providing executive coaching for adults, non-legal education advising to families, and academic coaching to support children in school. Previously, Gary has served in education as a science teacher, principal, adjunct professor, and curriculum specialist. In 2014, he was named Teacher of the Year for the state of Michigan and, in 2015, he was a featured speaker at TEDxDetroit. To learn more about his book, check out or for more information on Gary’s educational consulting practice, visit

  • Carly Bloom

    Carly Bloom began her writing career as a family humor columnist and blogger, a pursuit she abandoned when her children grew old enough to literally die from embarrassment. To save their delicate lives, Carly turned to penning steamy, contemporary romance. The kind with bare chests on the covers. Carly's debut novel, Big Bad Cowboy, was named a Best Book of 2018 by Publishers Weekly, which praised the story for its " overt and subtle takedowns of toxic masculinity." Carly and her husband raise their mortified brood of offspring on a cattle ranch in South Texas.

  • Allyson Apsey

    Allyson Apsey is passionate about celebrating the strengths in the staff and students she serves. She has been an educator for over 20 years, spending 15 of those years as a school leader. She has worked with students from preschool through high school and is currently an elementary principal. She is transparent, vulnerable, eternally optimistic, and she doesn’t ask questions unless she is open to the answers. Despite the fact that she never wanted to step foot in a school again after graduation, there is nowhere else she’d rather spend her days. You will find her dancing with students in the hallways in the mornings with her JammyPack, and in classrooms throughout the day. She doesn’t have a chair at her desk because you won’t often find her there. Allyson’s background includes being certified in William Glasser’s Choice Theory, being a Certified Trauma-Informed Practitioner in Education, and she is the author of The Path to Serendipity. In addition, she serves on the Executive Board of Directors for the Michigan Elementary and Middle Schools Principals Association as the State and Federal Relations Coordinator.

  • Amy Bearce

    Amy is the author of the World of Aluvia series and SHORTCUTS (April 2019), for grades 4 and up. She is also a former reading teacher and school librarian who has written over 250 short stories, articles, and poems for standardized state reading tests. As an Army kid, she moved eight times before she was eighteen, so she feels especially fortunate to be married to her high school sweetheart. Together they’re raising two daughters in San Antonio.

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The views and opinions expressed in this online screening are those of the presenters and participants, and do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of ITVS, public broadcasting, or any entities hosting the screening.