Dr. Sandy Gandy

  Office Location: G205
  Office Hours: Contact Professor Gandy for appointment.
  College: COE
  Division of Education

I am an associate professor and coordinator for the MA in Reading Program in the College of Education. As a lecturer, I began teaching at courses in Elementary Education and Reading at GSU in 2002. After I completed my dissertation, I advanced to professor and continued to teach courses in Reading. The program has moved from an on campus format to fully online in the past three years. Regardless of the format, the courses in the program prepare classroom teachers to qualify as reading specialists and literacy coaches, or remain in their classrooms and use their knowledge to improve the literacy levels of their students.

The ability to read well is fundamental to success in all subjects across the curriculum. The Common Core State Standards emphasize reading and writing with information, and most of the reading that we do as adults is with informational texts. Therefore, instruction should include strategies for understanding expository text as well as sources for information, whether print or digital.

However, reading for pleasure is also important. Given the prevalence of action video games and fast-paced cartoons, reading words on paper might not appeal as much to children. This is where knowledge of appropriate books for particular age groups can help classroom teachers plan instruction that will pique their students’ interest. Family finances were limited when I was a child, and my only reading materials were comic books. Perhaps that’s why I interested in graphic novels now. As they become more popular and available for any age group and in every genre, teachers can use their appeal to draw reluctant students into reading for pleasure.

Courses in children’s literature are my favorites to teach. As someone who owns several thousand books and reads an average of 2-3 books a week, I enjoy sharing my passion for reading with others. However, nothing compares to the light in a young child’s eyes after the first experience of reading a book independently.

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