Dr. Sylvia Vardell is a professor of children’s literature in the School of Library and Information Studies at Texas Woman’s University and the 2014 recipient of the Scholastic Library Publishing Award. In this interview, she talks about her recent collaboration with Janet Wong to compile the Poetry Friday Anthology series for elementary school, middle school, and science topics; ideas for using poetry across the curriculum; and reasons that teachers may be reluctant to teach poetry.
You can watch the interview below, view the interview transcript, read a short biography of Sylvia Vardell, or see a selected list of her poetry and children's literature guides for teachers and librarians. (This video is also available on YouTube.)
Dr. Sylvia Vardell is a professor of children’s literature in the School of Library and Information Studies at Texas Woman’s University. She has taught courses about children’s and young adult literature at both the Master’s and Doctorial level and has contributed chapters to, or authored, over 25 books. Her books include The Poetry Friday Anthology series, The Poetry Teacher’s Book of Lists, Poetry Aloud Here!: Sharing Poetry with Children, Poetry People: A Practical Guide to Children’s Poets, and Children’s Literature in Action: A Librarian’s Guide.
She is the 2014 recipient of the Scholastic Library Publishing Award presented to a librarian whose “unusual contribution to the stimulation and guidance of reading by children and young people” exemplifies outstanding achievement in the profession. In addition, she received the College of Professional Education’s Teacher of the Year Award in 2003 and 2012 at Texas Woman’s University.
Dr. Vardell is the regular poetry columnist for Book Links magazine published by the American Library Association and maintains a regular professional blog on sharing poetry with young people, Poetry for Children. The daughter of German immigrants, Dr. Vardell is also a passionate advocate for English language learners and immigrant students.