Bev Brenna

    Dr. Bev Brenna

    Acting Associate Dean - Undergraduate Studies, Research & Partnerships

    Research areas


    literacy education (reading and writing focus); children’s literature; special education; process drama; teacher education

    Curriculum Vitae


    Administrative Experience Grants Refereed Publications
    Education Fiction Books Non-refereed Publications
    Teaching Areas Representative Reviews Invited Lectures/Invited Conferences
    Teaching Experience Awards and Honours Conferences
    Research Interests Non-Fiction Books University Committees
    Honours Book Chapters Professional Service

    Administrative Experience

    Acting Associate Dean - Undergraduate Studies, Research & Partnerships, College of Education, July 1, 2014 - June 30, 2015

    Education

    PhD, 2010, University of Alberta, Elementary Education, Language and Literacy
    Dissertation 

     Characters with Disabilities in Contemporary Children’s Novels: Portraits of Three Authors in a Frame of Canadian Texts (shortlisted in the “Top Three” category for the Canadian Association for Curriculum Studies (CACS) Dissertation Award)

    B.A. (with Great Distinction), 2001, University of Saskatchewan, English
    Special Education Teacher Certification, 2000, University of Saskatchewan
    M.Ed., 1991, University of Saskatchewan, Curriculum Studies, Literacy Education
            Thesis: The Metacognitive Reading Strategies of Five Early Readers.
    B.Ed. (with Distinction), 1984, University of Saskatchewan, Language Arts and Drama

    Teaching Areas

    English Language Arts

    Teaching Experience

    Representative Courses
    ECUR 273.3: Oracy and Literature in the Elementary School
    ECUR 370.3: Introduction to Elementary Literacy Education
    ECUR 378.3: Creative Activities in Elementary and Middle Years Language Arts
    ECUR 879.3: Canadian Children’s Literature: A Socio-Political Review
    ECUR 877.3: Early Literacy Development
    ECUR 805.3: Trends and Issues in Research and instruction: Drama in Education
    EDUC 302.3: Situated Learners

    Consulting, Saskatoon Public Schools: Educational Consultant, Exceptional Learning Needs
    Consulting, Saskatchewan Valley School Division: Co-ordinator of Extended Learning and Catalyst Teacher, K – 12
    Special Education Teacher, Saskatoon Public Schools, K – 8
    Classroom Teacher, Saskatoon Public Schools
    Classroom Teacher, Saskatchewan Valley School Division
    Classroom Teacher, Outlook School Division
    Classroom Teacher, Borderland School Division

    Research Interests

    Literacy Education with a focus on the Reading and Writing processes
    Children’s Literature
    Special Education
    Process Drama
    Teacher Education

    Honours

    Dr. Marie Meyer Memorial Research Grant, University of Alberta, 2009-2010
    University of Alberta PhD Scholarship, 2010 (Honourary)
    University of Alberta PhD Scholarship, 2008 -2009
    University of Alberta Provost Doctoral Entrance Award (Honourary), 2008
    Saskatchewan Teachers’ Federation, Dr. Stirling McDowell Research Award, 2002
    Saskatchewan Teachers’ Federation Research Award, 1991

    Grants

    Principal Investigator

    • 2014 Undergraduate Student Research Assistantship (USRA) Funding ($4000), University of Saskatchewan.2013-14 Graduate Assistant Stipend Award ($2800), College of Education, University of Saskatchewan
    • Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) Insight Development Grant (2012-2014; $54 000) for "Portrayals of Characters with Disabilities in Contemporary North American Children's Books"
    • College of Education Program Implementation Research Grant (2012-2014, $1250) for "A Content Analysis of Perceived Literacy Outcomes : Program 2012"
    • University of Saskatchewan Publication Fund Grant (2012; $800) for "The White Bicycle"
    • University of Saskatchewan President's SSHRC (2011; $7000) for "Teacher Preparation for Teaching Reading: A Qualitative Case Study"
    • University of Saskatchewan Bridge Funding (2011; $5000) for “Able Texts: North American Children’s Novels About Characters with Disabilities
    • John Ranton McIntosh Research Grant Renewal (2011; $5000) for “Going Graphic: A Study of Graphic Novels in Elementary Classrooms
    • University Publications Fund Award: Publishing Subvention (2011; $800) for the young adult historical fiction manuscript Falling for Henry
    • President’s SSHRC Grant (2010; $5000) for “American Children’s Novels About Characters with Disabilities in a Frame of Contemporary Canadian Texts”
    • John Ranton McIntosh Research Grant (2010; $5000) for “Going Graphic: A Study of Graphic Novels in Elementary Classrooms"

    Collaborator
    2011-13 Saskatchewan Health Research Foundation Grant (SHRF) ($60 000) for Screening for FASD and Literacy in Justice, Health and Educational Contexts in Saskatchewan, 2 year period

    Canada Council Grants for Professional Writers: Creative Writing
    2011: Canada Council Grant ($15 000) for new young adult manuscript Jean-Paul Sartre and Me
    2007: Canada Council Grant ($10 000) for adult novella Foil Butterflies
    2006: Canada Council Grant ($15 000) for new young adult manuscript Falling for Henry

    Saskatchewan Arts Board Independent Artists Program: Literary Arts Grants
    2013 Saskatchewan Arts Board Independent Artist Literary Grant ($3000), December (December 1, 2013-March 30, 2014)
    2012: Saskatchewan Arts Board Travel Grant ($750) for attendance at the Dolly Gray Awards Ceremony, Miami, Florida
    2006: Saskatchewan Arts Board Grant ($6000) for junior fiction manuscript The Moon Children
    2005: Saskatchewan Arts Board Grant ($6000) for young adult manuscript Wild Orchid

    Fiction Books

    Brenna, B. (in press). The Girl with the Cat. Markham, ON: Red Deer Press/Fitzhenry & Whiteside.
    Brenna, B. (2013). The Bug House Family Restaurant. Vancouver, BC: Tradewind Books.
    Brenna, B. (2012). The White Bicycle. Markham, ON: Red Deer Press/Fitzhenry & Whiteside.
    Brenna, B. (2011). Falling for Henry. Markham, ON: Red Deer Press/Fitzhenry & Whiteside.
    Brenna, B. (2010). Waiting for no one. Markham, ON: Red Deer Press/Fitzhenry&Whiteside.
    Brenna, B. (2009). Something to hang on to. Saskatoon, SK: Thistledown Press.
    Brenna, B. (2007). The moon children. Calgary, AB: Red Deer Press.
    Brenna, B. (2005). Wild orchid. Calgary, AB: Red Deer Press.
    Brenna, B. (1999). The keeper of the trees. Vancouver, BC: Ronsdale Press..
    Brenna, B. (1998). Spider summer. Scarborough, ON: ITP Nelson.
    Brenna, B. (1997). Daddy longlegs at Birch Lane. Norwalk, CT: Smithsonian Inst./Soundprints.

    Representative Reviews:

    Featured Author: CANSCAIP NEWS (Canadian Society of Children's Authors, Illustrators and Performers), 33 (1), pp 1 – 6, Spring, 2011
    Review of Waiting for No One (YA novel), CM Magazine (U Manitoba), 4/4 Stars, February, 2011
    CM Magazine, Vol XVI, Number 4, 2009
    Cm Magazine, Volume XIII, Number 9, 2006
    Cm Magazine, Volume XII, Number 10, 2006

    Awards and Honours:

    2013 Nominee for the Governor General’s Literary Award (Children’s Literature Category) for The White Bicycle (young adult novel).

    2014 Best Fiction List for Young Adults (Young Adult Library Services Association/YALSA) for The White Bicycle

    The International 2012 Dolly Gray Children's Literature Award for Waiting for No One

    Waiting for No One shortlisted by the Canadian Library Association for the Young Adult Book Award, 2011

    Something to Hang On To, The Moon Children and Wild Orchid are starred selections from the Canadian Children’s Book Centre; titles listed on the New York Public Library’s 2007 Recommended Books for the Teen Age and shortlisted for: Canadian Library Association’s Young Adult Book Award, the Manitoba Readers’ Choice Award, the Saskatchewan Book Award, the Ontario Library Association’s White Pine Award, and the Saskatchewan Willow Award

    Non-Fiction Books

    Brenna, B.  (in press). Able Texts: Canadian Children’s Fiction About Characters with Disabilities. Toronto, ON: Canadian Scholars’ Press, 225 pp.
              ***This is a dissemination of the results from my SSHRC Insight Development research study

    Book Chapters

    Brenna, B. (in press). Radical Change in Adolescent Fiction. In K. Magro (Ed.), Finding new voice and vision in literacy education. Ulm, Germany: International Centre for Excellence in Educatio (ICIE), Ulm, Germany.

    Bainbridge, J., & Brenna, B. (2013). Agency, Picturebooks and Pedagogy: From Possibilities to Practice . In J. Bainbridge & I. Johnston (Eds.), Reading Diversity through Canadian Picture Books: Preservice Teachers Explore Issues of Identity, Ideology and Pedagogy. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.

    Brenna, B. (1995). The Development of Metacognitive Strategies in Early Readers. In L. Wason Ellam, A. Blunt, & S. Robinson (Eds.), Horizons of Literacy (pp. 71 – 78). Winnipeg: Canadian Council of Teachers of English Language Arts.

    Refereed Publications

    Emmerson, J., Fu, Q, Lendsay, A. & Brenna, B. (2014). Picture Book Characters with Disabilities: Patterns and Trends in a Context of Radical Change. Bookbird,52(4).

    Sloboda, M. A., Brenna, B., & Kosowan-Kirk, C. (2014). Comprehension strategies in practice through a graphic novel study. Journal of Reading Education (JRE). 

    Brenna, B., &  Bell, A. (2014). Never too late to learn: The unique literacy profile of a teen with multiple disabilities. The Reading Professor.

    Brenna, B. (2013). Mindful portrayals: Using fiction to create awareness, understanding, and support for people with autism and developmental disabilities. Education and Training in Autism and Developmental Disabilities, 48(4), 514-521.

    Brenna, B., & Chen, S. E. (2013). Teacher Recommendations for Reading-Education Components of B.Ed. Programs. Journal of Reading Education, 38(2), 10 - 17.

    Brenna, B. (2012). One Literate Life: A Case Study of a Ninety-Four-Year-Old Reader. The Reading Professor, 34 (1).

    Brenna, B. (2012). Graphic novels in action: A classroom study of reader response. English Quarterly, 43 (1-2), 73 – 87.

    Brenna, B. (2011). How Graphic Novels Support Comprehension Strategy Development in Children's Reading. Literacy (online version, December 2011; print version, 2014).

    Barker, C., Kulyk, J.., Knorr, L., & Brenna, B. (2011). Open inclusion or shameful secret: A comparison of characters with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) and characters with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) in a North American sample of books for children and young adults. International Journal of Special Education, 26 (3), 171-180.

    Brenna, B. (2011). An Early Reader Two Decades Later: A Follow-Up Case Study on the Metacognitive Reading Strategies of “Jan”. Literacy, 45 (2), 55 – 61.

    Brenna, B. (2011). Characters with disabilities in contemporary novels for children: A portrait of three authors in a framework of Canadian texts. Language and Literacy, 13 (1). 13 pp.

    Brenna, B. (2011). A Wider Notion of the Value of Repeated Readings: Rereading Robert Massie’s Nicholas and Alexandra—A Self-Study. The Reading Professor, 32 (2), 9 – 13.

    Brenna, B. (2010). Assisting Young Readers in the Interpretation of a Character with Disabilities in Iain Lawrence’s Juvenile Fiction Novel “Gemini Summer”. English Quarterly, 41 (1-2), 54 – 61.

    Brenna, B. (2010). Creating Characters with Diversity in Mind: Two Canadian Authors Discuss Social Constructs of Disability in Literature for Children. Language & Literacy, 11 (1).

    Brenna, B. (2008). Breaking Stereotypes with Children’s Fiction: Seeking Protagonists with Special Needs. International Journal of Special Education, 23 (1), 100 – 103.

    Brenna, B. (2008). Stories in the Wind. Journal of the Association for Research on Mothering, 10 (2).

    Brenna, B. (1995). Five Early Readers Solving Problems: A Case Study. Reading, 29 (2), 30 – 33.

    Brenna, B. (1995). The Metacognitive Reading Strategies of Five Early Readers. Journal of Research in Reading, 18 (1), 53 – 62.

    Non-refereed Publications

    Brenna, B. (2014, pending). Writing for Children: Reading as a Swinging Vine. Freelance. Regina, SK: Saskatchewan Writers’ Guild.

    Brenna, B. (1995 –2013). Monthly Children’s Book Reviews, The Saskatoon Star Phoenix.

    Brenna, B. (2013). Able texts: Breaking stereotypes with/in children’s novels. Invited author column for The ALAN Review (National Council of Teachers of English: Assembly on Literature for Adolescents), 40(2), 85 – 88.

    Brenna, B. (2011). Introducing…Rachna Gilmore: Interview of a Canadian Author. CANSCAIP News, 33 (3), 1 – 6.

    Brenna, B. 2010. Review of Mark Thurman & Emily Hearn’s “Get Graphic: Using Storyboards to Write and Draw Picture Books, Graphic Novels, or Comic Strips.” Markham, Ontario: Pembroke. 94 pages. Canadian Journal of Education (CJE/RJE), 33 (3), 649 – 651.

    Brenna, B. (2009). An Author’s Thoughts on Presenting Characters with Special Needs. Canadian Children’s Book News, 32 (3), 10 – 11.

    Brenna, B. (2006). Breaking Stereotypes with Children’s Fiction. Abilities Magazine, 66, 47 – 48.

    Brenna, B. (1990). Notes from Home: Nursery Rhymes. Family Connection, 1 (2), 21.

    Brenna, B. (1990). Toddlers: Beginning the Reading Habit. Family Connection, 1(1), 19.

    Teachers’ Guides (available through the Stewart Resources Centre, SK Teachers’ Federation or from www.beverleybrenna.com)

    Invited Lectures/Invited Conferences (Representative)

    Brenna, B. (2014).  Readings at the Festival of Words, Moose Jaw, SK, July.

    Brenna, B. (2014).  Readings at the Festival of Words, Moose Jaw, SK, July.

    Brenna, B. (2014). TD Canadian Children’s Book Tour Reading, Confederation Centre Public Library, Charlottetown, PEI, May 5 am.

    Brenna, B. (2014). TD Canadian Children’s Book Tour Reading, Murray River Leona Giddings Memorial Library, Murray River, PEI, May 5 pm.

    Brenna, B. (2014). TD Canadian Children’s Book Tour Reading, Tignish Public Library, PEI, May 7, am.

    Brenna, B. (2014). TD Canadian Children’s Book Tour Reading, Borden-Carleton Library, PEI, May 8, pm.

    Brenna, B. (2013). Reading at the Young Authors’ Conference, Haines Junction, Yukon, April 26.

    Brenna, B. (2013). Workshop for English Teachers, Young Authors’ Conference, Whitehorse, April 26.

    Brenna, B. (2013). Secondary Students’ Workshop and Readings sessions at the Young Authors’ Conference, Whitehorse, April 24 and 25.

    Brenna, B. (2013). Reading and Reception at the Yukon Writers’ Festival, Whitehorse, April 23.

    Brenna, B.(2012). Able texts: The evolution of characters with disabilities in contemporary children’s literature. Council for Exceptional Children’s Division on Autism and Developmental Disabilities Conference. Miami Beach, Florida: January.
    ***Acceptance Speech for Dolly Gray Award

    B.A. Brenna (2011). A Saskatchewan author’s development—Bev Brenna unedited. Saskatchewan Association of Library Technicians (SALT) Conference. Saskatoon, SK: June. 

    B.A. Brenna (2011). Able texts: Books that support critical literacy discussions across thegrades. Saskatchewan Reading Council Conference: Building Bridges Through Literacy.Saskatoon, SK: April.

    B.A. Brenna (2010). “Something to Hang On To: Literature to reflect diversity for classroom reading,” Saskatchewan Council for Exceptional Children (CEC), SaskatchewanTeachers’ Federation, November 17, 2010.

    Conferences (Representative)

    Emmerson, J., Fu, Q. &  Brenna, B. (2013). Portrayals of characters with disabilities in contemporary North American children’s picture books. Canadian Society for the Study of Education (CSSE),Victoria, BC: May.

    Brenna, B. (2013). Artful portrayals: Using fiction to create awareness, understanding, and support regarding people with autism and developmental disabilities. 14th International Conference on Autism, Intellectual Disability & Other Developmental Disabilities, Council for Exceptional Children: Division on Autism & Developmental Disabilities. Kona, Hawaii: January.

    Brenna, B. (2012). A Pedagogy of Inclusion: Writing the Word and the World. Innovations in Qualitative Research. University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK: June.

    Brenna, B. (2012). Graphic Novels in Action: A Classroom Case Study of Upper Elementary Students' Reading Comprehension Strategies. Canadian Society for the Study of Education (CSSE), Waterloo, ON: May

    Brenna, B. (2012). Storytelling as a Landscape for Story Writing. Published proceedings of the Hawaii International Conference on Arts & Humanities, Honolulu, January.

    Brenna, B. (2011). The Portrayal of Characters with Disabilities in Contemporary Canadian and American Novels for Children. Children’s Literature Association Conference, Roanoke, Virginia: June.

    Brenna, B. (2011). Beyond Words: A Qualitative Case Study of Children's Comprehension Strategies Related to Graphic Novels. Canadian Society for the Study of Education (CSSE), Fredericton, New Brunswick: May.

    Brenna, B. (2011). The Portrayal of Characters with Disabilities in Contemporary Canadian and American Novels for Children. Children’s Literature Association Conference, Roanoke, Virginia: June.

    Brenna, B. (2011). Beyond Words: A Qualitative Case Study of Children's Comprehension Strategies Related to Graphic Novels. Canadian Society for the Study of Education (CSSE), Fredericton, New Brunswick: May.

    Brenna, B. ( 2010). The Portrayal of Characters with Disabilities in Contemporary Canadian Novels for Children. Canadian Society for the Study of Education (CSSE), Montreal, Quebec: June.

    Brenna, B. (2009). Representation of Characters with Disabilities in Novels for Children and Adults. Canadian Centre for Research on Literacy, Edmonton, Alberta: January.

    Brenna, B. (2008). Portrayals in Literature of Characters with Special Needs. International Conference on Education, Honolulu: January.

    University Committees (Representative)

    Graduate Faculty and Graduate Council  July 1, 2014-present       Invited Member

    University Council  July 1, 2014-June 30, 2017       Elected Member at Large

    Teaching, Learning and Academic Resources Committee of Council  July 1, 2013- June 30, 2016       Appointed Member

    University Council  July 1, 2013- June 30, 2014       Elected Member at Large

    Academic Advising Charter Sub-Committee, spring, 2013       Invited Member

    University of Saskatchewan College of Reviewers for SSHRC Applications: 2012 – present      Invited Member

    Teaching and Learning Committee, University Council: 2012 – 2015       Appointed Member

    Working Group: Exploring Disability Culture; proposal supported by funding from the Interdiscplinary Centre for Culture and Creativity (College of Arts & Science)

    Professional Service (Representative)

    Member, Alliance of Canadian Cinema, Television and Radio Artists (ACTRA), 1990-current

    Member, American Historical Association, 2010-current

    Member, Canadian Association for Curriculum Studies (CACS), 2009-current

    Member, Canadian Society for the Study of Education (CSSE), 2009-current

    Member, Canadian Society of Children’s Authors, Illustrators and Performers (CANSCAIP), 2006 – current    

    Member, Children’s Literature Association (ChLA), 2011 – current

    Member, Council for Exceptional Children (Division of Autism and Developmental Disabilities; Teacher Education Division), 2012 - current

    Member, International Reading Association (IRA), 2009-current

    Member, Language and Literacy Researchers of Canada (LLRC), 2009-current

    Member, Professors of Reading Teacher Educators (PRTE), 2009-current

    Member, Saskatchewan Reading Council, 2009 – current

    Member, Saskatchewan Writers’ Guild, 1992 - current

    Member, Saskatchewan Young Readers’ Choice Willow Awards (SYRC), 2010-current

    Member, Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI), 2012-current

    Member, Writers' Union of Canada, 2011-current

    Invited Member of an Editorial Board (Representative)

    Invited Associate Editor for the new International Journal for Talent Development and Creativity, International Centre for innovation and Teaching Excellence (ICIE), Paris, France (June, 2013-present)

    Invited General Managing Editor of online open access journal Education Matters, U of S, 2012- 2014.

    Editorial Advisory Board of The Reading Professor (a refereed journal of the Professors of Reading Teacher
    Educators, International Reading Association, Special Interest Group), Term 2011-2015.

    Other Representative Examples of Professional Practice

    Invited Reading, Montgomery School, Saskatoon, Monday June 2 (30 min presentation to 30 students)

    Invited Storytelling, Saskatchewan Writers’ Guild Author Readings Program, Biggar School, Tuesday, April 15, 2014 (3 presentations to audiences of 100)

    Invited Storytelling/Storymaking, Lanigan Elementary School, Friday, March 28, 2014 (1 hour presentation to 30 students)

    Invited Storytelling/Storymaking, Drake Elementary School, Friday, March 28, 2014 (1 hour presentation to 30 students)

    Invited Author Reading, Grade 11/12 Creative Writing Class, Aden Bowman Collegiate, Saskatoon, April 12, 2013

    Literacy for Life Children's Conference Planning Committee: College of Education Liaison Member, 2011-current.

    Storytelling and Author Reading, Vincent Massey School, May 12, 2011: 200 students grades K – 8.

    Brenna, B. (2010). “Something to Hang On To: Literature to Reflect Diversity for Classroom Reading,” Saskatchewan Council for Exceptional Children (CEC), Saskatchewan Teachers’ Federation, November 17, 2010.

    Storytelling and Author Reading, James L. Alexander School, April 26, 2010: 100 students grades 3 – 5 (60 min)

    Storytelling and Author Reading, James L. Alexander School, April 26, 2010: 100 students grade 6 (45 min)

    Storytelling and Author Reading, Brunskill School, February 23, 2010: 100 students grades 1 – 3 (45 min)

    Storytelling and Author Reading, Brunskill School, February 23, 2010: 100 students grades 4 – 6 (45 min)

    Brenna, B. (2009). Eight passages developed for grade four assessment (poetry, narrative, expository), English Language Arts Curriculum, Saskatchewan Ministry of Education.

    Brenna, B. (1991). Reading Theory . Seminal research conducted for SK Ministry of Education.

    Brenna, B. (1991). Reader Response. Seminal research conducted for SK Ministry of Education.

    Teachers' Guides (Representative)

    “The Crazy Man” by Pamela Porter: Suggestions for Transactional Response Activities by Beverley Brenna and Students in ECUR 378.3, 2014; Saskatchewan Teachers Federation

    Falling for Henry by Beverley Brenna (teachers' study guide and writing activities for my young adult novel), 2012; Saskatchewan Teachers' Federation

    Waiting for No One by Beverley Brenna (teachers' study guide and writing activities for my young adult novel), 2012; Saskatchewan Teachers' Federation

    The White Bicycle by Beverley Brenna (teachers' study guide and writing activities for my young adult novel), 2012; Saskatchewan Teachers' Federation

    Binky the Space Cat by Ashley Spires (teachers' study guide and writing activities for a graphic novel by  a Saskatoon author), 2012; Saskatchewan Teachers' Federation

    Something to Hang on To by Beverley Brenna (teachers' study guide and writing activities for my young adult collection of short stories), 2010; Saskatchewan Teachers' Federation

    For further information, please see www.beverleybrenna.com