Follett, McHenry County Regional Office of Education partner to co-sponsor Book Talk April 16

Follett Content Solutions, McHenry County Regional Office of Education sponsor event exploring Relational Teaching

Follett Content Solutions and the McHenry County Regional Office of Education are co-sponsoring a virtual event next month with award-winning Illinois educator and noted author Anthony Reibel that will analyze the concept of relational teaching while also allowing attendees to earn seven hours of professional development (PD) credit.

“Book Talk: Embracing Relational Teaching by Anthony Reibel” will be held online from 7 to 8 p.m. (CDT) on Tuesday, April 16. Registration for the event closes on Monday, March 11.

Admission is $60 and, in addition to the virtual event and PD credit from the Illinois Regional Office of Education, includes a paperback copy of Reibel’s 2022 book, Embracing Relational Teaching: How Strong Relationships Promote Student Self-Regulation and Efficacy, which will be shipped in advance to registrants. For out-of-state residents, admission is $45 but doesn’t include PD credit.

Reibel is director of research and evaluation for Adlai E. Stevenson High School in Lincolnshire, where he has been for 17 years.

At the event, Reibel — a past recipient of Technology Educator of the Year as named by Illinois Computer Educators — will use his expertise to discuss the concept of relational teaching, a practice that puts the student before the score, their thinking before the product, and relationships in teaching.

Andrea Spieglan, a fifth-grade teacher at Lowrie Elementary School in Elgin, Ill., attended Follett’s most recent Book Talk, “The Power of Effective Reading Instruction” with author Karen Gazith, and also is registered for the April 16 event.

“I've already used some of the strategies from Karen Gazith’s book in my classroom,” Spieglan said. “Meeting the author and asking her questions directly was refreshing and meaningful. It was a great book and discussion, and I hope to see more PD opportunities like it.”

The event’s co-sponsors are:

McHenry-based Follett Content Solutions has long been the largest provider of educational materials to PreK-12 libraries, classrooms, learning centers and school districts in the United States, and a major supplier to educational institutions worldwide. Follett distributes library and classroom print books, textbooks, supplemental books, hands-on learning resources, audiovisual materials and digital resources. It is headed by Britten Follett, CEO, a fifth-generation Follett family member.

McHenry County Regional Office of Education, which acts as an advocate for education by providing positive leadership, performing regulatory functions directed by the Illinois School Code and the Illinois State Board of Education, coordinating and delivering state and local services, and disseminating information for educators, school districts, and the community. It is headed by Diana Hartmann, regional superintendent of schools.

“We are thrilled to announce a partnership with Follett to host the Book Talk,” said Ryan Hawkins, director of professional and student services for McHenry Regional County Office of Education. “It promises to be an engaging discussion on relational teaching, exploring strategies to enhance your relational pedagogy, developing deeper relationships with students, and walking away with immediate applicable strategies to amplify student learning and success.”

To register for the April 16 Book Talk, or for more information, visit

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