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Robert Pritchard is a professor of education at Sacramento State University. A frequent consultant for schools, districts, and departments of education, Robert brings extensive experience as a former ESL teacher and reading specialist to his work with teachers and administrators. Having lived in and taught in diverse environments—from inner-city Newark, New Jersey, to the Republic of Palau—Robert developed a passion for teaching culturally and linguistically diverse learners.
"I taught for five years before I made the decision to make teaching my career," Robert says. "I realized that what I loved most about my interaction with children was helping them learn and grow. And the areas my students needed the most support in were language and literacy development. So that became—and has remained—my professional focus."
Robert received a bachelor's degree in political science from Susquehanna University; a master's degree in education from California State University, Hayward; and a doctorate degree in reading education and second language learning from Indiana University.
"The personal connections we make, the words we speak, and the actions we take influence children their entire lives," Robert says.
Among his areas of specialty are language and literacy development, with a focus on diverse learners; professional development for teachers; and innovative uses of technology.
"Effective professional development—in other words, job embedded, sustained, and collaborative—provides opportunities for practice, research, and reflection that deepen teacher content knowledge and pedagogical skills. These in turn impact student learning, which is the ultimate goal of professional development."
Common Core Standards in Diverse Classrooms: Essential Practices for Developing Academic Language and Disciplinary Literacy, coauthored with Jeff Zwiers and Susan O'Hara, is Robert's latest book. He has authored numerous publications related to language and literacy development of culturally and linguistically diverse learners, and is a regular presenter at national research conferences.