Park University’s Watson Literacy Center To Host “Powerful Texts” Event

Park University’s Dorothy Harper Watson Literacy Center, which is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year, will host Kansas City children’s fiction/nonfiction author Christine Taylor-Butler as part of the Literacy Center’s Powerful Texts Series on Wednesday, Feb. 27, from 5 to 6:30 p.m., in room 221A of the Mabee Learning Center/Academic Underground on the University’s Parkville Campus. The event is free and open to the public.

Taylor-Butler will discuss her writing, including her work on Sacred Mountain: Everest, which describes the lives of the Sherpa people who live on Mount Everest, and their relationships with the people who come from around the world to climb that mountain. She also will discuss how nonfiction texts can be powerful as a way of helping children connect with nonfiction topics, including science and social studies. The event will include a question and answer session.

“Christine’s focus recently has been on quality nonfiction for children, and that focus is especially timely in light of the recent adoption of the Common Core State Standards Initiative, which calls for an increased focus on children’s reading of nonfiction informational texts,” said Kathy Lofflin, Ph.D., associate professor of education and director of the DHWLC. “The insights Christine will share will be valuable to anyone interested in children and in learning.”

The Literacy Center’s Powerful Texts Series invites local authors with ties to Park to share how texts have been powerful for them and for others. Authors speak about their inspiration, skills and goals for making a difference with their work. The DHWLC is named for Dorothy Watson, Ph.D., a 1952 graduate of Park University and an internationally known literacy researcher, advocate and educator. Because she believed Park provided learning opportunities that she might not have had otherwise, she thanked the University by endowing a literacy center at Park, which was dedicated in June 2003.

For more information about the Dorothy Harper Watson Literacy Center or the Powerful Texts Series, visit, or contact Lofflin at or (816) 584-6419. For more information about Taylor-Butler, visit

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