Will's Adventure to the
Candy Mountain

Written by Dr. Gerry Haller

Illustrated by YM Cho

About the Author

Dr. Haller earned a Doctorate of Education from Nova Southeastern University in Miami Beach, Florida; a Master of Arts in Administration and Supervision of Curriculum from Concordia University in River Forest, Illinois; and a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education from Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois. She started her career as a classroom teacher in the inner city of Chicago Public Schools. She has taught various classroom level from prekindergarten to sixth-grade reading, as well as teaching At Risk, gifted, bilingual and regular education students.

Dr. Haller’s experiences have spanned being a Principal of an Elementary School, an Assistant Principal of a gifted Center, a trainer of Principals and teachers through the Academy for Professional Growth as an Instructional Trainer. Her experiences also include serving with the State Board of Education Department Teacher Education and Certification: Teacher Education Program Approval Team, reviewing Early Childhood College Programs for accreditation; Curriculum Writer for the Bureau of Early Childhood where she was the coordinator of the writing team and planned, organized and presented Staff development for early childhood teachers. She has also presented workshops for the Chicago Association for the Education of Young Children as well as various areas of the curriculum at workshops for many Colleges, Universities, School Districts, and Organizations throughout the United States.

The Carnegie Foundation recognized Dr. Haller for the Advancement of Teachers: Preschool Education in an Urban Public School. Her Prekindergarten Classroom was selected as a model of exemplary practice for two years in a row. She was also cited as the outstanding Teacher of the year and presented with the Illinois Congress of Parents and Teachers Distinguished Service Scroll Award. She received the Chicago Public School, District 8 Certificate of Merit. In 2004 she was honored with the Phi Delta Kappa Award from Northeastern University as the Outstanding Educator of the Year.

As the Principal of Jahn World Language School, she encouraged the teachers and student body to accomplish bringing the status of the school from the 28th percentile to the 100th percentile in reading and math. The students were able to raise their scores from the 28th percentile to the 50th percentile in a one year span ranking the school as the number one school in the Chicago Public School System in growth and number two in the state. For this amazing endeavor, she was presented with the Academic Continuous Achievement for reading Award. She accepted this award on behalf of her teachers and students. Through her leadership, the staff and students have excelled in their endeavors The accomplishments of everyone have made the school one of outstanding achievements. Their methods of differentiated instruction, inclusion strategies, curriculum mapping and the use of teaching through learning centers have made the school a training ground for student teachers from various Universities as well as a forum for the Chicago Public School teachers to observe outstanding instruction.

Recently she has been working as a consultant for the Chicago Public Schools Least Restrictive Environment Grant through the Office of Professional Development. Dr. Haller supports teachers through the use of differentiated instruction, learning styles and the importance of learning centers. She has also been a Consultant for the Teacher’s Academy, STARS Program, Office of Principal Preparation and the Early Childhood Department.

About the Book

Will’s grandmother has told Will about the Candy Mountain since he was a small child. One night, Will is awakened by the conductor of a train. He is told to hurry to catch the train. What train? The train to the Candy Mountain, of course. On the train, he meets a boy named Quinn, and they decide to go on the adventure together. Will can hardly believe he is going to the Candy Mountain. Together, there are many decisions to make. Each one is more mysterious than the last. What will they find? What decisions will they have to make?

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    Dr. Gerry Haller

    @Westwood Books Publishing LLC