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Linda Rief

Linda Rief left the classroom (reluctantly) in June of 2019 after 40 years of teaching Language Arts with eighth graders. She misses their energy, their curiosity, and their desire to read and write. She has file folders filled with the thinking of these adolescents and will continue to share all she has learned from them through writing and speaking. She is an instructor in the University of New Hampshire's Summer Literacy Institute and a national and international presenter on issues of adolescent literacy. Her newest book is The Quickwrite Handbook: 100 Mentor Texts to Jumpstart Your Students' Thinking and Writing. She is also the author or co-editor of numerous Heinemann titles, including Read Write Teach; Inside the Writer's-Reader's Notebook; Vision and Voice; and Seeking Diversity. She is a co-editor with Kylene Beers and Robert Probst of Adolescent Literacy. For five years she co-edited with Maureen Barbieri Voices from the Middle, a journal for middle school teachers published by the National Council of Teachers of English, and for an additional ten years continued to write a column for the journal.

A recipient of NCTE's Edwin A. Hoey Award for Outstanding Middle School Educator in the English Language Arts, her classroom was featured in the series "Making Meaning in Literature", produced by Maryland Public Television for Annenberg/CPB. For three years, she chaired the first Early Adolescence English/Language Arts Standards Committee of the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards. In 1988, she was the recipient of one of two Kennedy Center Fellowships for Teachers of the Arts. She spent a month at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, writing prose and poetry based on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. She read her writing in performance at the Kennedy Center, a program later broadcast on NPR.

Read a New York Times article that shows how Linda and Oyster River Middle School in Durham, New Hampshire  responded to increased high-stakes testing pressures. Follow Linda on Twitter @LindaMRief.



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