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Celebrating 2021 and Looking Ahead to 2022

Hello, dear friend of Reading With Pictures. 2021 has been a very busy year as we have been focused on renewing our operations, creating a new logo, updating policies, and creating innovative programming and new resources for teachers, librarians, and publishing professionals.

In August, we launched our first Teaching With Comics conference, a three-day virtual event featuring two keynote speakers: educator, poet, activist, and comic creator Dr. Lee Francis IV and educator, artist, and cartoonist Cara Bean. Thanks to the hard work of our team and sponsors like Manga Classics, Pixton, and Diamond Book Distributors, the event was a great success. If you weren’t able to join us, you can watch recordings of most of the panels on our YouTube channel.

In addition to all the programming, Teaching With Comics provided us with our newest publication, a 12-page booklet called Why Comics? Along with research and rationale on the benefits of using the comics medium in education, it also holds great lists of resources and support materials.

With the return of comics conventions, Reading With Pictures has partnered with show producers along with the American Library Association’s Graphic Novel Comics Round Table, the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund, NYPL, NYC Dept of Education, NYCSLA, and LitX to create professional development programming for shows like NYCC21, Anime NYC, C2E2 and Emerald City Comic Con.

With each of these shows we are able to bring in local experts for panels and workshops and grow our network of incredible educational professionals.

In addition to those programs, RWP produced panels on representation for events such as the Black Caucus ALA. This panel featured authors and artists Jerry Craft, Ezra Claytan Daniels, Alitha Martinez, Alex Simmons, Dr. Vanessa Hintz and was moderated by our own Christina Taylor.

This past year also marked the launch of our research committee chaired by Dr. Ashley Dallacqua. The goal of this committee is to help Reading With Pictures audiences promote, find, and use comics in education research.

Looking ahead to 2022: We have a lot more work to do. Our website will continue to evolve. We are relaunching our publishing initiative, we will produce another Teaching with Pictures virtual conference, and we will expand our professional development programming partnerships which will now include shows at the FanExpo events. In March we are collaborating with the National Arts in Education Association to produce professional programming for their annual conference in New York City. We will also continue to produce more much-needed resources for educational and library professionals at trade shows and consumer events around the country.

Join our growing force!

If you would like to be involved in the convention and conference programming efforts, or work with us on projects like developing educational tools, research, or outreach, we would love to hear from you. If you love working with comics in your world of teaching, librarianship, storytelling…we would love to have you join us.

Thank you for your support!