Season 7, Episode 5

Science of Reading professional development, with Danielle Thompson

Susan interviews Danielle “Nell” Thompson, literacy multi-hyphenate and the creator of The Big Sky Literacy Summit. This August, the summit returns with a star-studded lineup of mentors, sages, teachers, and leaders, and in this episode, Nell shares how her own background—working with students in Alaska and Mississippi, among many other places—has helped shape this year’s conference theme. She and Susan discuss the importance of mentorship in advancing evidence-based literacy practice and literacy instruction.

Meet our guest(s):

Danielle "Nell" Thompson

Danielle M. Thompson, Ph.D., CCC-SLP, is an educational consultant, teacher of educators, and servant leader who is insatiably curious about all things that make people’s lives better. She is an agent of positive change, working to help teachers and leaders re-think, unlearn, and up-level their knowledge. As a speech language pathologist and teacher, she worked with PreK–12 students for over a decade in rural at-risk environments from Alaska to Mississippi, in public schools, Head Starts, and private practice. Currently, she is president and founder of The Transformative Reading Teacher Group, president of The Reading League Montana, and the creator of The Big Sky Literacy Summit.

Meet our host, Susan Lambert

Susan Lambert is the Chief Academic Officer of Elementary Humanities at Amplify, and the host of Science of Reading: The Podcast. Her career has been focused on creating high-quality learning environments using evidence-based practices. Susan is a mom of four, a grandma of four, a world traveler, and a collector of stories.

As the host of Science of Reading: The Podcast, Susan explores the increasing body of scientific research around how reading is best taught. As a former classroom teacher, administrator, and curriculum developer, Susan is dedicated to turning theory into best practices that educators can put right to use in the classroom, and to showcasing national models of reading instruction excellence.


“Use a failure to fail forward and to really learn from the failure. Wisdom is only gained when we reflect.” —Danielle “Nell” Thompson

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