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Text Messages: Recommendations for Adolescent Readers

Text Messages: Recommendations for Adolescent Readers

Podcast for Grades 6 – 12

Text Messages is a monthly podcast providing families, educators, out-of-school practitioners, and tutors reading recommendations they can pass along to teen readers. Each episode will feature in-depth recommendations of titles that will engage and excite teen readers.



Jennifer Buehler, Ph.D.

Jennifer Buehler, Ph.D.

Jennifer Buehler taught English for ten years before earning a Ph.D. from the University of Michiganís Joint Program in English and Education. As a high school teacher, she used young adult literature and a large classroom library to engage and inspire her students as readers. Watching students choose books led Jennifer to expand her own reading accordingly as part of the ongoing quest to meet the needs and interests of teens.

As a teacher consultant with the Eastern Michigan Writing Project, Jennifer led workshops on young adult literature for parents, teachers, and students in university methods classes. Now Assistant Professor of English Education at Saint Louis University, Jennifer teaches classes on young adult literature, English methods, writing pedagogy, content area literacy, and urban education. She was recently elected president of NCTE's Assembly on Literature for Adolescents (ALAN), and she served as a member of ALANís first Amelia Elizabeth Walden Award Committee.

Jennifer is the host of Text Messages: Recommendations for Teen Readers, a monthly podcast focusing on the best of young adult literature.


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Episode 76  |  Published August 10, 2014

Life After High School

Many teens enjoy reading upóchoosing books where the main character is just a few years older than they are, and then reading in order to imagine what their life might become. Together the titles in this episode show teens the range of paths to adulthood and the struggles that are a natural part of the process.


Episode 75  |  Published August 03, 2014

Still Worth Reading

Given the current level of energy and enthusiasm for young adult literature, now is a good time to pause and look beyond current bestsellers to older, lesser-known titles: that is, young adult novels from the past that never grabbed the popular culture spotlight but are still worth reading.


Episode 74  |  Published June 22, 2014

A Conversation with Walter Dean Myers

If there is anyone in the world of childrenís and young adult literature who could be described as a living legend, itís Walter Dean Myers. Tune in to hear how his own experiences as a reader have shaped his approach to storytelling, what he seeks to offer young people through his writing, and the thinking behind a select handful of his novels Ė books that incorporate concepts as varied as magical realism, the social contract, and oral histories with our nationís war veterans.


Episode 73  |  Published May 30, 2014

Talking about Text Complexity

In this episode, youíll hear about a variety of books that may deepen our thinking about complex texts, including collections of poems and works of historical fiction, graphic novels and informational texts, and novels built on interwoven storylines. Together they offer reading options for teens with diverse interests, tastes, and sensibilities.


Episode 72  |  Published April 27, 2014

A Conversation with Rita Williams-Garcia

Itís rare to find historical fiction that weaves rich period detail into the lives of memorable and endearing characters, but Rita Williams-Garciaís middle-grade novels One Crazy Summer and P.S. Be Eleven do just that. Tune in to hear Rita explain how she drew on personal and historical contexts to develop her characters and tell their story. Youíll also hear about her great love for her work and her commitment to spending as long as it takes to get the story right.

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