Elfrieda "Freddy" Hiebert is an educational researcher whose work examines literacy, learning, early childhood development, teacher development, writing and children's literature. "Freddy" is CEO/President of The Text Project.
According the Text Project website: " Elfrieda “Freddy” Hiebert (Ph.D., University of Wisconsin) has had a long career as a literacy educator, first as a teacher’s aide and teacher of primary-level students in California and, subsequently, as a teacher educator and researcher at the universities of Kentucky, Colorado-Boulder, Michigan, and California-Berkeley. Her research, which addresses how fluency, vocabulary, and knowledge can be fostered through appropriate texts, has been published in numerous scholarly journals and books. Through documents such as Becoming a Nation of Readers (Center for the Study of Reading, 1985) and Every Child a Reader (Center for the Improvement of Early Reading Achievement, 1999), she has contributed to making research accessible to educators. Hiebert’s contributions to research and practice have been recognized through awards such as the American Educational Research Association’s Research to Practice award (2013)."
The Text Project provides high quality and open access resources for teachers, teacher educators, parents, tutors and students meant to strengthen essential reading skills. The online resource provides the latest current news on literacy from Common Core State Standards to information on text complexity, vocabulary and assessment.
The primary focus of "Freddy's" work has been on identifying text features that support reading development among beginning and struggling readers. She has also contributed to related literatures, particularly on how knowledge of vocabulary influences students' learning from text. Hiebert has recently addressed the issues of how words should be selected for instruction in reading and how word selection differs for narrative compared to informational texts. This is a particularly relevant issue as the CAASPP pushes students to read more informational texts than previous tests.
As we move toward a more modern, digital world, she is encouraging teachers to revisit Silent Sustained Reading (SSR) in the classroom. She also encourages teachers to understand how to choose the right level text for each student during SSR.
Her work with studying reading focus, stamina, comprehension and speed helps to inform my action research, as I explore SSR in my classroom and how reading can be deepened through digital tools.
Lisa Gottfried is a CTE teacher with 20 years experience as CEO of her own Video and Motion Graphics Production house. She currently teaches Intro to Digital Media, Video Production and Game/3D Design. She loves her job and her students!