Campus groups to study Winkler's books for children

hank zipzer book cover

Well-known actor Henry Winkler, keynote speaker for the 2013 McGlothlin Celebration of Teaching, is a respected advocate of education, particularly for children with learning disabilities.

In advance of Winkler's appearance at the April event on the Radford University campus, two book groups are organizing to read and discuss the popular Hank Zipzer series of children's books, which Winkler co-authored. Other campus events also are planned.

The two book discussion groups are:

  • Hank Zipzer Book Club I, which will meet on two Tuesdays, April 9 and 16, from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. in Peters Hall A041.
  • Hank Zipzer Book Club II, which will meet on two Wednesdays, April 10 and 17, from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. in Peters Hall C116.

A free Hank Zipzer book will be available to the first 16 people to sign up in the Teaching Resources Center for a book club, each of which will accept 32 participants. Participants may be eligible for professional development points.

Besides the book groups, events on campus will include a free public screening of the film "Here Comes the Boom," in which Winkler is featured, on Wednesday, April 10, at 8 p.m. in McGuffey Auditorium.

On the day of the McGlothlin event, highlighted by presentation of the prestigious McGlothlin Awards for Teaching Excellence, several previous award recipients will give presentations on campus.

  • Katherine Lear, a teacher at Penn Forest Elementary School in Roanoke County, will speak at 4 p.m. in Heth 014 about her travel experiences and how she is sharing them with students.
  • Thomas Foster, a teacher at Paul L. Dunbar School for Innovation in Lynchburg, and Cynthia J. Kelley, a teacher at Amherst County High School, will speak at 4 p.m. in Heth 022 about their travel experiences.
  • Cory Price and Mary Evans, teachers from Kipps Elementary School in Blacksburg, will speak at 4 p.m. in Heth 016 on "Setting High Expectations and Meeting the Needs of Diverse Learners."

Also speaking will be Susan Miller, a retired RU physical education professor, at 4 p.m. in Heth 043. Her topic will be "Moving, Reading and Learning."

The McGlothlin Awards for Teaching Excellence recognize teachers from specified portions of Virginia, Tennessee, West Virginia and Kentucky, and are among the largest education prizes in the nation. Each year, two teachers—one from grades K–5 and one from grades 6–12—are awarded $25,000 each with the stipulation that $10,000 be used for international travel to broaden their thinking and experience. The program, presented by the Bristol-based McGlothlin Foundation, is now in its 14th year and has given a total of more than $600,000 to exceptional educators.

Blue Ridge PBS has directed the McGlothlin Awards since its inception. The event is hosted by the RU College of Education and Human Development. Additional financial support for this year's McGlothlin Celebration of Teaching is provided by the Radford University Foundation Inc., RU Club Programming, Kappa Delta Pi, Student Virginia Educators Association and the Student Council for Exceptional Children.

This year's awards ceremony is open to the public and begins at 5:15 p.m. in the Bondurant Auditorium of Preston Hall on the Radford campus.

For more information about the McGlothlin Awards for Teaching Excellence, visit the McGlothlin website or email

Learn more about Winkler's role as an advocate of education in RU News & Events.

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Mar 26, 2013
Bonnie Q. Erickson
(540) 831-5804