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Headshot of Cindy Downend

Cindy Downend

Associate Director, Literacy Programs

What I like most about my role within the Center is…

I love to teach! It is so rewarding to see how our work with educators can be so empowering and transformative. When you think in new ways about literacy teaching and learning, you change your practice to improve the school experiences of children.

What I believe in

The power of literacy to improve, enrich, and change people’s lives.

Previous work highlights

Many years as a classroom teacher, Reading Recovery teacher, and literacy coach in Michigan, Germany, Minnesota, and Florida.

Favorite book

All The Light We Cannot See, by Anthony Doerr

Fun fact

Many years ago I was smuggled across an international border to go snow-skiing!

Education

MA, Elementary Education, Western Michigan University
EdS, Educational Leadership, Nova Southeastern University

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Featured Blog Posts

April 11, 2024 Vivian Vasquez, Author & Professor

Centering What Matters to Children: How to Connect Your Teaching to Your Students’ Passions and Inquiry Questions

How do you decide what to focus on in your teaching? Our Kids, Books & Anti-Racism series speaker Vivian Vasquez starts by observing what her students care about.

February 23, 2024 Gen Arcovio, Literacy Trainer

Teaching for Fluency All Day, Every Day

Here are a few tips to integrate intentional teaching for fluency, without adding anything new to your day.

February 12, 2024 Mary E. Cronin, Literacy Coach & Author

New Diverse Titles to Add to Your Classroom Library

Inspired by the first session in our Kids, Books & Anti-Racism Series, Literacy Coach Mary Cronin shares a few book recommendations of her own.