Skip to main content

Michigan's Literacy Essentials Video Receives International Award

December 6, 2018

LANSING – The Michigan Department of Education (MDE), along with several partners including Michigan Virtual and Message Makers, recently received an international award for a video designed to help Michigan educators deliver pre-kindergarten and K-3 early literacy essentials.

An international 2018 Telly Award has been presented in recognition of excellence in the Non-Broadcast Educational Video Category for a video that is part of Michigan’s Essential Instructional Practices in Early Literacy.

“We are incredibly proud of this recognition and the extraordinary collaboration on literacy in Michigan,” said Interim State Superintendent Sheila Alles. “Helping teachers deliver high quality reading instruction to every child, in every classroom, every day is vital. When every child learns to read, we are that much closer to becoming a Top 10 education state in 10 years.”

The videos, which feature Michigan teachers and students, are part of a 21-part series of training modules titled “Essential Instructional Practices in Early Literacy” for Pre-kindergarten and K-3 educators to improve literacy in Michigan and are available free on Michigan Virtual’s professional learning portal.

“We are thrilled to be part of this award for excellence in non-broadcast educational video,” said Jamey Fitzpatrick, President and CEO of Michigan Virtual. “While the award is certainly an honor, the true reward is realized when teachers across the state experience this work as part of their professional learning to raise literacy rates in Michigan.”

The content of the video that won the award was adapted from the Essential Instructional Practices in Early Literacy, as part of the General Education Leadership Network Early Literacy Task Force. It was executive produced by Michigan Virtual, and produced by Message Makers, in coordination with Tanya Wright, Associate Professor in the College of Education, at Michigan State University; and Professor Nell Duke, from the School of Education at the University of Michigan.

The Telly Awards was founded in 1979 to honor excellence in local, regional and cable television commercials including non-broadcast video. Telly Award winners represent work from some of the most respected advertising agencies, television stations, production companies and publishers from around the world.

The video that won the award is K-3 Essential 1.1:  Goal Setting, and focuses on deliberate research-informed efforts to foster literacy motivation and engagement within and across lessons. The teacher creates opportunities for children to see themselves as successful readers and writers. The video’s intent is to show practical examples using real teachers in real classrooms throughout Michigan, expertly implementing the desired practice.

The videos are embedded within the online professional learning modules, to demonstrate the actual implementation of the Literacy Essentials in a real Michigan instructional setting. MDE recommends use of the full modules, in addition to the videos. These materials can be used individually by classroom teachers, and by Intermediate School Districts and local district Literacy Coaches, when providing training or one-on-one support to classroom teachers.

Go to for more information or to enroll in the training modules.