Writers in the Classroom

Our Writers in the Classroom program—designed to connect children and youth to authors through live, interactive events—continues in 2021 in a virtual format.

Invite an author from our stellar 2021 Writers in the Classroom spring lineup to discuss their most recent title (and share secrets of the writing craft) with your class.

These digital visits will enliven and enrich classroom discussion in the lead-up to the author’s appearance, and leave with ideas to expand upon afterwards.

This program is presented thanks to the support of the Government of British Columbia.

 

Angela Ahn

Vancouver, British Columbia

Angela Ahn is a former teacher and librarian and the author of Krista Kim-Bap, a Bank Street Best Book of the Year (2019). She worked in the Canadian public education system, as well as in Hong Kong for two years, teaching English as a Second Language. After five years of teaching, she went back to school to earn a Master of Library and Information Studies from the University of British Columbia. She lives in Vancouver with her family.

Availability: March-May

Peter Lee’s Notes from the Field (Grades 4-6)

 

S.K. Ali

Toronto, Ontario

S.K. Ali is a teacher based in Toronto whose writing on Muslim culture and life has appeared in The Toronto Star. Her family of Muslim scholars is consistently listed in the The 500 Most Influential Muslims in the World, and her insight into Muslim culture is both personal and far-reaching. A mother of a teenage daughter herself, Ali’s YA novels are beautiful and nuanced stories about young women exploring their identities through friendship, family and faith.

Availability: June only

Misfit in Love (Grades 9-12)

Cale Atkinson

Kelowna, British Columbia

Cale Atkinson is an illustrator, writer and animator living lakeside with his family in Kelowna. Atkinson is constantly working on numerous projects, like Sir Simon: Super Scarer, Where Oliver Fits, Monsters 101 and Unicorns 101 to name a few. He is assisted in his artistic endeavors by Charlie, a wise and noble floof.

Availability: March-June

Simon and Chester Super Detectives! (Grades 1-4)

Tanya Boteju

Vancouver, British Columbia

Tanya Boteju is a teacher and writer living on unceded territories of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh First Nations (Vancouver, BC). Part-time, she teaches English to clever and sassy young people. The rest of her time, she writes and procrastinates from writing. Her novel, Kings, Queens, and In-Betweens (Simon & Schuster, 2019), was named a Top Ten Indie Next Pick by the American Booksellers Association, as well as selected for the American Librarian Association 2020 Rainbow List. Her next YA novel, Bruised (Simon & Schuster, 2021), has been selected as a Gold Standard book by the Junior Library Guild. In both teaching and writing, she is committed to positive, diverse representation.

Availability: March-June (depending upon author's teaching schedule)

Bruised (Grades 8-12)

Nicola I. Campbell

Chilliwack, British Columbia

Nicola I. Campbell is the author of Shi-shi-etko, Shin-chi’s Canoe, Grandpa’s Girls and A Day with Yayah. Nłeʔkepmx, Syilx and Métis, from British Columbia, her stories weave cultural and land-based teachings that focus on respect, endurance, healing and reciprocity. A finalist for numerous children’s literary awards, Campbell’s book Shin-chi’s Canoe won the 2009 TD Canadian Children’s Literature Award and the 2008 Governor General’s Literary Award for illustration.

Availability: March-June

Stand Like a Cedar (Grades 2-4)

 

Andrea Curtis

Toronto, Ontario

Andrea Curtis writes books for both children and adults. Her children’s non-fiction titles include A Forest in the City, illustrated by Pierre Pratt; Eat This! (starred reviews from Kirkus and School Library Journal) and What’s for Lunch? (VOYA’s Honor List). She has also written the young adult novel Big Water and teaches creative writing to kids. Curtis lives with her family in Toronto where she grows vegetables, wanders the ravines and spends as much time as possible on her bike.

Availability: Mid-April-Mid-June

City of Water (Grades 4-5)

Rachelle Delaney

Vancouver, British Columbia

Rachelle Delaney is the author of several middle-grade novels, including The Metro Dogs of Moscow, which was a CLA Book of the Year Honor Book, as well as a finalist for the Silver Birch Award and the Red Cedar Award, among others. Its sequel, The Circus Dogs of Prague, was shortlisted for the Pacific Northwest Library Association Young Reader’s Choice Award. The Bonaventure Adventures won BC’s Chocolate Lily Award in 2019, and Clara Voyant, her most recent novel, is shortlisted for this year’s Chocolate Lily Award.

Availability: March-June

Alice Fleck’s Recipes for Disaster (Grades 4-7)

 

Fiona Dunnett

North Vancouver, British Columbia

Fiona Dunnett is a Canadian illustrator based in North Vancouver. She trained as a visual artist and illustrator in BC and drew inspiration from living and working in Oaxaca, Mexico. She has done group and solo exhibitions around Mexico and BC, as well as illustration work for the City of Vancouver, the Federation of Post-Secondary Educators of BC and the Vancouver Mural Festival. Her illustrations have been published in Geist and SAD Mag. Travesía is Gerster and Dunnett’s first book.
Presenting with Michelle Gerster.

Availability: March-June

Travesía (Grades 8-12)

Michelle Gerster

Oakland, California

Michelle Gerster is an American photojournalist, videographer and ESL educator based in Oakland, California, after living in Oaxaca, Mexico. Her work focuses on social justice in relation to immigration and deportation. Her photojournalism on deportation from the United States to Mexico received the PROOF Emerging Photojournalist Award honourable mention.
Presenting with Fiona Dunnett.

 

Availability: March-June

Travesía (Grades 8-12)

 

Brett D. Huson

Winnipeg, Manitoba

Hetxw’ms gyetxw (Brett D. Huson) is from the Gitxsan Nation of the Northwest Interior of British Columbia. Growing up in this strong matrilineal society, Huson developed a passion for the culture, land and politics of his people, and a desire to share their knowledge and stories. Huson has worked in the film and television industry, and has volunteered for such organizations as Ka Ni Kanichihk and Indigenous Music Manitoba. The Sockeye Mother (winner of The Science Writers and Communicators Book Award) was Brett’s first book for children.

Availability: March-June

The Frog Mother (Grades 4-6)

Jasmin Kaur

Vancouver, British Columbia

Jasmin Kaur is a writer, illustrator and spoken word artist living in Vancouver. Her writing, which explores feminism, social empowerment, love, and survival, acts as a means of healing and reclaiming identity. As an arts facilitator and fourth-grade teacher, Kaur has been leading creative writing workshops for young people across North America, the UK and Australia over the past five years. If I Tell You the Truth is her sophomore novel after When You Ask Me Where I’m Going.

Availability: March-June (Mondays and Tuesdays only)

If I Tell You the Truth (9-12)

Louisa Onomé

Toronto, Ontario

Louisa Onomé is an organizer for the Festival of Literary Diversity (FOLD), which works to bring attention to diverse authors and stories, and has previously participated in the London Writers’ Fair. Onomé, a Nigerian Canadian, holds a bachelor’s degree in professional writing from York University. She lives in the Toronto area and when not writing, she works in counselling.

Availability: March-June (Mondays and Fridays only)

Like Home (Grades 8-12)

Jael Richardson

Brampton, Ontario

Jael Richardson is the executive director of the Festival of Literary Diversity (FOLD), the books columnist on CBC Radio’s q and an outspoken advocate on issues of diversity. She is the author of The Stone Thrower: A Daughter’s Lesson, a Father’s Life, a memoir based on her relationship with her father, CFL quarterback Chuck Ealey. The memoir received a CBC Bookie Award, an Arts Acclaim Award and a My People Award. A children’s edition was published by Groundwood Books. Her essay “Conception” is part of Room’s first Women of Colour edition, and excerpts from her first play, my upside down black face, appear in the anthology T-Dot Griots: An Anthology of Toronto’s Black Storytellers. Richardson received an MFA in creative writing from the University of Guelph. She lives in Brampton, Ontario.

Availability: March-April 15; May 16-June 30

Gutter Child (Grades 10-12)

Sarah Suk

Vancouver, British Columbia

Sarah Suk (pronounced like soup with a K) lives in Vancouver, where she writes stories and admires mountains. When she’s not writing, you can find her hanging out by the water, taking film photos, or eating a bowl of bingsu. Made in Korea is her first novel. You can visit Sarah online at SarahSuk.com and on Twitter and Instagram @SarahAeliSuk.

Availability: June only

Made in Korea (Grades 8-12)

 

Kevin Sylvester

Toronto, Ontario

Kevin Sylvester is the author/illustrator of more than thirty books including MiNRSThe Almost Epic Squad: Mucus Mayhem, the Neil Flambé Capers and The Hockey Super Six. He’s also a broadcaster and a documentary producer. Sylvester has won awards all over Canada, including the Silver Birch Award, the Hackmatack Children’s Choice Book Award and the Canadian Children’s Book Centre Award.
Presenting with Basil Sylvester.

Availability: March-June

The Fabulous Zed Watson! (Grades 4-8)

Basil Sylvester

Toronto, Ontario

Basil Sylvester is a non-binary writer and bookseller. They live in Toronto. The Fabulous Zed Watson! is their first book with their father, Kevin Sylvester.
Presenting with Kevin Sylvester.

 

Availability: March-June

The Fabulous Zed Watson! (Grades 4-8)