Get the Unpack Your Impact Book!

Naomi O'Brien

Founder of Read Like a Rock Star, culturally responsive teaching, and social justice oriented education


“I am passionate about setting students up for success in the future. I believe that for better or worse, educators make decisions every day and every year that will change students’ lives. I teach students and educators to teach like it matters because it does. I believe in pouring into students and helping them to tap uncover and develop gifts and skills that no one can take away from them so that they can grow up and truly change the world.” – Naomi O’Brien

Naomi O'Brien

Founder of Read Like a Rock Star, Content Creator, and Author

Naomi O’Brien is an educator, content creator, and author with over 10 years of experience in the classroom. She has taught PreK-5 in a variety of roles, but most of her time was spent in the K-2 grade levels. She has Early Elementary, ESOL, and Gifted and Talented endorsements. Naomi prides herself on building cultural connections with her students and their families and using research-based practices to provide quality education to students.

Naomi has presented and shared her practices with teachers across the country and world through education conferences, her book, Unpack Your Impact, her self-created educational resources, and through her social media platform as Read Like a Rock Star.

Naomi’s passion for culturally responsive teaching, accurate primary social studies lessons, rigorous reading instruction, and social justice-oriented education has been a driving force behind the message she hopes to instill in other educators and children.

Program Options


Keynote, Half-Day, & Full-Day Options


30-90min, Half-Day & Full-Day Options


Keynote Options

Teach Like You are Going to Change Their Lives!

PD Type: Keynote
Designed Length: 60 minutes
Platform: Virtual or In-Person
Target Audience:  Teachers, Administrators (school and district level), Staff

“Do the best you can until you know better…” -Dr. Maya Angelou

We have 180 days with our students a year. We are 1/3 of their journey from K-12th grade. From academic to social-emotional skills, the impact we have on students, for better or worse, is monumental. We should be teaching like we are GOING TO CHANGE our students’ lives because whether that is our intention or not, we will. 

We can:

  1. Treat each student like they are our own

  2. Critical conversations about the world

  3. Commit to improving your craft

  4. Value relationships and restorative practices

  5. Don’t forget about gifted students

  6. Be culturally responsive

Naomi would like to remind teachers of the critical impact they can have on their students and how it will play a role in their lives later on.

5 Shifts to Being Culturally Responsive

PD Type: Keynote or Workshop
Designed Length: 60 minutes
Platform: Virtual or In-Person
Target Audience:  Teachers, Administrators (school and district level), Staff

Naomi would like to highlight that these 5 shifts are not sufficient to become “fully” culturally responsive. Naomi would like to assist in directing teachers on how to re-approach education and begin to make differences that impact students. Traditional teaching isn’t working for everyone. Shifts must be made if we are truly invested in putting students first and wanting everyone to succeed.

Shift 1: Examining our own biases in order to build authentic and deep relationships with students and their families. Reflect on decisions. Value impact over intent. Effective behavior management and restorative practices.

Shift 2: Get to know students’ cultures and explore their identities. Work with students to become bicultural, not forcing them to drop their old culture and conform. (Use this with shift 3 in order to connect learning to students)

Shift 3: Windows and mirrors for books, but also for class decor and lessons too. Students see themselves reflected. They feel connected. They feel safe to take academic risks.

Shift 4: Seek to find student strengths, truly have high expectations. Be culturally responsive to the students in front of you, not just the dominant culture. Learning is student-centered.

Shift 5: Promote critical thinking, use multiple strategies to meet student needs. Higher-order thinking and divergent thinking are encouraged and promoted.

Naomi would like to help change the way teachers approach educating their students and meet students’ needs in a more culturally responsive way. 

Workshop Options

Author Visits

PD Type: Enrichment
Designed Length: 30-45 minutes
Platform: Virtual or In-Person
Target Audience:  Students

Book Naomi for a virtual or in person author visit to share her journey of becoming an author with your students. Her visits generally include:

• Three 30-45 minute presentations about learning how to read, using your voice, and becoming an author.

Q&A to follow.

• A read-aloud of her picture book(s). (You’ll Never Guess What I’m Thinking About, You’ll Never Guess What I’m Saying, Micah’s BIG Question)

• Optional book signing time with students and staff.

We would love to help you plan a visit that your students will enjoy and be inspired by!

Please fill out the form below to get information on dates and booking rates. 

Unpack Your Impact

PD Type: Workshop
Designed Length: 60-120 minutes
Platform: Virtual Only
Target Audience:  Teachers, Administrators (school and district level), Staff

By laying out their revolutionary approach to teaching social studies, O’Brien and Tabb explain how to provide students with a deep but achievable understanding of global social systems as they’re transformed by history, sociology, economics, geography, and civics. And, because the Unpack Your Impact curriculum can be folded into existing lessons for almost any topic, students garner an inclusive and interdisciplinary appreciation for how all learning shapes, and is shaped by, a diverse array of human cultures. Inspiring, optimistic, and empowering, Unpack Your Impact shows that primary teachers can make a positive impact—individually and globally..

Training Sessions

The Gifted Teacher In You

Creating Learning Environments that Encourage Awareness and Understanding of Interest, Strengths, and Need.

PD Type: Workshop
Designed Length: 60-90 minutes
Platform: Virtual or In-Person
Target Audience:  Teachers

There are about 3.3 million gifted children in the United States…and those are just the ones we know about! Roughly 3.6 million students fly under the radar and go undetected in our classrooms. Whether students have the label or not, they are still gifted learners. Even when students are fortunate enough to have gifted pull-out once a week, they are still gifted when they return to their gen. Ed. classrooms. Join Naomi as she helps you discover how to discover the gifted teacher in you! We can all be gifted teachers to be the most effective we can be for our gifted students! Naomi will show you some shifts you can make in your classroom to meet your gifted students’ needs without feeling like you’re doing double the work!

Rethinking Reading Comprehension

PD Type: Training
Designed Length: 60-90 minutes
Platform: In-Person or Virtual
Target Audience:  Teachers (school and district level), Staff

You’ve taught your students how to visualize, summarize, synthesize, and make all the connections. You’ve coached them through tons of close reading passages. You’ve taught every comprehension strategy you can think of, but it still seems like those skills just won’t stick. You need a comprehension overhaul! Join Naomi as she will show you how to choose the right texts, build background knowledge, plan the right questions, and change the way you assess comprehension!


Thank you for your efforts on our behalf as part of Be About It. I'm a high school educator (my third career) and I'm driven by lifting ALL of my students up to their potential. I'm proud of what I've done, and can tell many stories, but suffice it to say that your session with LaNesha Tabb shows many of us (e.g., old white guys) we don't know what we don't know. Thanks for helping us reflect on the job we are doing in such an effective way! I hope you and LaNesha are getting many thank you notes!
Doug Hakala
I just wanted to thank you for sharing your wisdom with me. I just finished listening to the Simply Coaching Summit Session you did with LaNesha Tabb. So many good little golden nuggets and thoughts to take from your conversation, thank you. My biggest take-aways are "this is life-long work", "have the hard conversations", and "be open and honest with others" - take action!
First I want to thank you for being such an inspiration and wonderful advocate and teacher. You make me want to do better now that I know better, I've bought many of the books you have recommended (and your perspectives lessons) and I am trying every day, week and year to have better more meaningful conversations with my Kindergarten class and I have you and LaNesha to thank for that. I am not perfect and I make mistakes but I am trying.
I just want to take a moment and reach out to say how appreciative we are that we get to work with you on this project. We greatly value your time and expertise.
Lorraine Akemann
Kahn Academy Kids
Your words spoke so much for themselves, and your messages on teachers needing to be better and do better are *chef’s kiss*. Thank you for that insightful experience.
Siriana Abboud
Allusio Academy Founder


Thank you for your interest in booking a private professional development experience! Please fill out our Booking Inquiry form and a member of our team will contact you soon.


Thank you for your interest in booking a private professional development experience! Please fill out our Booking Inquiry form and a member of our team will contact you soon.