Type of Artist:
Talks, workshops or readings
I love visiting schools or going to festivals to talk to children about reading and writing. It is one of the best parts of my job as an author.
My fun, feisty, interactive sessions are designed to excite children about reading and rev up their writing. I involve the audience right from the start, get them using their imaginations and set mini challenges to explore key writing skills along the way.
The sessions are about having fun and celebrating creativity - but, also, about encouraging children to question the way they write and think how they can get the most out of the words they use to convey their wonderful ideas. I always stress that writing - like football or ballet - takes practice to get right … That’s part of the joy of doing it well.
Alongside my funny picture books and fast-paced comic chapter books, I have revisited much-loved classics for slightly older children such as Black Beauty and The Railway Children. I have developed new stories inspired by the originals, exploring the Victorian era and WW2 in my versions (which can fit well with classroom history topics). I also have written lots of high interest/low ability books to aid struggling readers (esp 7 -12 yr old boys) and am happy to talk about my own dyslexia.
At other end of scale, very happy to stretch Year 5/6 and G&T groups from my background teaching Drama/English Lit at Universities.
DetailsPreferred age range:
3 - 12 year olds (Also students/adults keen on writing for Children/writing skills)
No of sessions per day:
Happy to fit as many 45 min sessions in as timetable allows. Do not need long breaks other than time for lunch!
45/60 minutes plus time for signing either after individual sessions or at end of day.
Happy to consider longer sessions for specific small-group workshops etc.
Areas prepared to travel to:
I live in North London but am happy to travel anywhere if overnight expenses are met.
Train or car (at current rate per mile)
Please email us for details
Please indicate which author you are interested in.
Lou Kuenzler's website
My Family and Other Ghosts
Not Yet, Zebra
Eat Your People
Finding Black Beauty
The return of the Railway Children
We set Lou a hard task, working across 6 different classes and with each Year group as a whole, not easy even for experienced teachers, but she coped brilliantly. The buzz of excitement she left behind for writing was palpable, with many children snatching precious minutes after breaks to carry on with their stories. She did an amazing job and I would highly recommend her to other schools – you won’t be disappointed!
Year 5 teacher, Cambridge
Girls and boys will love her visits, she involves the children in her talks and has them all captivated. Its noisy though, so beware the excitement level can be high! I can’t recommend her highly enough and the feedback from children and teachers has been very complimentary.
Lou’s writing is full of humour and she reads like a true performer. Having had her visit my school for an author visit, I can promise you she is the perfect person to excite children about reading and rhyming and shrinking to the size of a fish finger. Librarian and Book Blogger Lou is fantastic with the kids – engaging and funny – and she pitches her events at exactly the right level so that they are enjoyable but also thought-provoking and rewarding. She handles the children brilliantly, making them laugh but also encouraging them to think about things like description, character and plot (they all love her books, which helps). They really do hang on her every word, which is lovely to see.
Lou Kuenzler's author visit was an inspiration to all who heard her. Not only was she engaging to children from the youngest to the oldest, but she maintained a sense of fun and humour throughout. As she read extracts from her "Shrinking Violet" series, the characters came alive and we longed to read on. Many children at our primary school are now reading her books and they all enjoyed meeting Lou. Her year group workshops were very well adapted to focus on key writing skills for each age group. Even the youngest children were able to respond to her questions. Lou, in return, was masterful in her interaction with each year group, skilfully getting the children to hone up their answers to improve their ideas within minutes. It was a pleasure to see how she drew out so much innate creativity from our children. Her book signing was personal and friendly. She took the time to value children's work and hear their ideas. Her KS 2 assembly was an excellent introduction to the day in which she explained how she had been an author since the age of six. I am sure that many of the children are now inspired to consider themselves as writers albeit yet unpublished. A highlight of the day was an extended interview with Lou led by some year six children based on questions from the year six classes. Lou was able to be very informative, encouraging and inspiring with children of all ages and in all settings. The children will look back at this exciting week for many years to come.
Susan Blincko, Reading Recovery Teacher and Music Subject Leader
Normandy Primary School
Lou Kuenzler's Amazon page