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Cathy Burnett is Professor of Literacy and Education at Sheffield Hallam University where she leads the Language and Literacy Education Research Group. She has worked as an actor-teacher, primary teacher, literacy consultant and teacher educator and has remained committed to literacy education that foregrounds creativity and criticality and which values the diverse experiences and interests that learners and teachers bring to educational contexts. Her current research takes a sociomaterial perspective on relationships between technology, literacy and education, and she has published many books, journal articles and chapters on these and other themes for academic and professional readerships. Her latest book, Undoing the Digital: Sociomateriality, literacy and education will be published in 2020. She is a previous editor of high quality national and international journals. Cathy is currently President of United Kingdom Literacy Assoc.

Kristiina Kumpulainen is Professor of Education and Scientific Director of the Playful Learning Center at the Faculty of Educational Sciences, University of Helsinki, Finland. She has led numerous research projects and published widely on socioculturally informed studies on children’s agency and learning across early years and primary education, cultural institutions, and homes. Her research has addressed pedagogies and learning environments that create opportunities for creative, playful, and participatory learning. At present, she chairs the Nordic Research Network on Digitalising Childhoods funded by the Academy of Finland.


Frank Serafini has been an elementary classroom teacher, a literacy specialist, an educational consultant, and a professor of literacy education and children’s literature for the past thirty years. During that time, Frank has published ten professional development books with Heinemann, Scholastic, and Teachers College Press. In addition to his academic publishing, Frank has written and illustrated seven children’s picturebooks, including the Looking Closely Series with Kids Can Press. During his tenure as an educator, Frank has garnered numerous awards, including the Distinguished Professor of Children’s Literature from the ILA, Faculty Teaching Awards at both UNLV and ASU, and the Bank Street Best Book Award and the Teachers Choice Award for his Looking Closely picturebooks.



Libby Gleeson AM is a popular and highly acclaimed writer of picture books and longer fiction for young people and books about writing for adults. Libby is an adjunct Associate Professor in the Department of Education and Social Work, University of Sydney. She is currently chair of WestWords, a children’s and youth literature project in Western Sydney.
Her most recent picture book: Look a Book is illustrated by Freya Blackwood and her novel Red was published in 2012.



Mary Ryan is Professor and inaugural Head of the Department of Educational Studies at Macquarie University. She began her career as a primary teacher and then taught pre-service teachers in literacy, English curriculum and professional practice for almost 20 years. She is acknowledged internationally for her research in reflective learning and writing, is a Principal Fellow of the UK Higher Education Academy and is the recipient of a national award for outstanding contributions to student learning. Her research investigates the texts, literacies, learning, and teaching in classrooms, schools, higher education institutions and workplace learning. Current projects include investigating a reflexive approach to teaching writing in primary classrooms; and tracking the conditions for graduating students to manage the demands of the teaching profession.


Professor Lisa Kervin is a researcher in Language and Literacy at the University of Wollongong, where she also leads research on Play, Curriculum and Pedagogy in Early Start Research. After completing her undergraduate studies and PhD at the University of Wollongong, she took up academic appointment in the (then) Faculty of Education at UOW in 2004. Prof Kervin’s research interests include: (1) children’s literacy practices, (2) how children use technology and understand Digital Literacies and (3) how teachers may be supported in using technology in classroom literacy experiences. She has researched her own teaching and has collaborative research partnerships with teachers and students in tertiary and primary classrooms and prior-to-school settings.


Dr Kylie Lipscombe is a Lecturer and researcher in the School of Education at the University of Wollongong. She coordinates Educational Leadership within the School and leads the design and delivery of the Master of Education (Educational Leadership) Program. Kylie has 20 years’ experience in educational organisations such as schools and university in roles such as teacher, deputy principal, curriculum writer, curriculum consultant and lecturer.  As a researcher she is passionate about the nexus between educational research and practice. As such, her program of research is aimed at positively influencing professional practice in schools in the fields of leadership, professional development and literacy education. This includes investigating whole school collaborative practices, school and university collaborative partnerships, middle leadership, and digital literacy in primary schools.


Jeannie Baker is the author and illustrator of a number of children’s picture books, including the award-winning ‘Where the forest meets the sea’ and the critically acclaimed duel language picture book, ‘Mirror’. Her characteristic use of collage and mixed media to create detailed and elaborate collages is stunning and unique.

Originally from the UK, Jeannie lives in Australia. Find Jeannie online at


Tristan Bancks tells stories for the page and screen. His books for kids and teens include Two Wolves, The Fallandthe Tom Weekly series. Two Wolves won Honour Book in the 2015 Children’s Book Council of Australia Awards and was shortlisted for the Prime Minister’s Literary Awards. It also won the YABBA and KOALA Children’s Choice Awards, as did his latest thriller, The Fall, a CBCA Notable book. Detention, a gripping new novel about a daring escape and a lockdown in a school, is out July 2019.

Tristan is a writer-ambassador for literacy charity Room to Read. He is currently working with producers to develop several of his books for the screen. He’s excited by the future of storytelling and inspiring others to create. You can find out more about Tristan’s books, play games, watch videos and help him try to change the world here at


Barbara Comber is a Research Professor in the School of Education at the University of South Australia. Her research interests include teachers' work, critical literacy, place-conscious pedagogy and social justice. She has conducted longitudinal ethnographic case studies and collaborative action research with teachers working in high poverty and diverse communities. Her research examines the kinds of teaching that make a difference to young people's literacy learning trajectories and what gets in the way. Her ongoing research explores transdisciplinary curriculum development and pedagogies of reconnection. Books include Literacy, place and pedagogies of possibility (Comber, 2016) and Literacy, leading and learning: beyond pedagogies of poverty (Hayes, Hattam Comber, Kerkham, Lupton & Thomson, 2017).


Gregg Dreise grew up in south-west Queensland in a large family that loves music, art, sport, culture and family. He is very proud of his Kamilaroi and Euahlayi heritage. Culture, music and storytelling have run through his family’s blood since time began. Gregg is a talented storyteller who uses didgeridoos, guitars, laughter and high-energy performances to pass on culture, unity and wisdom through his educational talks. He is on a journey to get right around Australia to share his stories and learn more about the ancient and diverse histories and cultures of this beautiful country. He is fully aware that all of our cultural roots help strengthen the assortment of unique and proud Australians that we all become. Gregg’s latest release is My Culture and Me, a stirring story about pride, respect and maintaining culture for young readers aged 5 to 10.


Associate Professor Jioji Ravulo has an extensive history in working across greater western Sydney and beyond with diversity and equity groups striving to create sustainable initiatives and resources through meaningful collaborations and partnerships. This has included working with and supporting the NSW Police Force, NSW Justice: Juvenile Justice, NSW Department of Education, Mission Australia, the National Rugby League and Australian Rugby Union. Before becoming an academic in 2011 though Western Sydney University, Jioji worked 12 years in the community sector across various roles and areas including youth justice, mental health, alcohol and other drugs, educational engagement and homelessness. Jioji continues to undertake work in clinical private practice to ensure relevance of skills and knowledge that enhance social work teaching, learning and research approaches.


Michelle Michael is currently the Principal Education Officer (PEO) for the NSW Department of Education (DoE) Information Technology Directorate. Michelle currently leads the STEMShare Community Program across NSW. In recent years, Michelle has held senior leadership roles at Taronga Zoo, Climate Change, Arts Education and NSW Department of Education. Under the STEMShare Community program, 660 kits that include robotics, 3D printing, coding, film-making and virtual reality equipment are available for schools to borrow. Michelle assists in guiding a new team of STEMShare Leaders advising schools and teachers on best ways to use the new STEMShare kits and implementing high quality STEMShare Learning Challenges effectively into classrooms. The STEMShare Community team are dynamic and innovative. Collectively, they have a passion and vision for the effective use of technology in learning and student engagement.



Julian Sefton-Green is Professor of New Media Education at Deakin University, Melbourne, Australia. He has worked as an independent scholar and has held positions at the Department of Media & Communication, London School of Economics & Political Science and at the University of Oslo and he is also a visiting Professor at The Playful Learning Centre, University of Helsinki, Finland. He has researched and written widely on many aspects of media education, new technologies, creativity, digital cultures and informal learning and has authored, co-authored or edited 16 booksHe has directed research projects for the Arts Council of England, the British Film Institute, Creative Partnerships and Nominet Trust and is one of the key researchers in the ARC funded Centre of Excellence studying the Digital Child. He has spoken at over 50 conferences in 20 countries <>