Opening new worlds for students

The Cause

Imagine elementary-aged children sitting on the edge of their seats, eager for Toby the (wonder) dog, the star of his own series of novels, to perform…
Or junior high students, hands waving in the air as they wait to be the one chosen to offer the next act their newly-created main character is going to perform in their very own class novel …
Or senior high students understanding how a wayward girl in Germany so accurately mirrors their own teenage angst …
Or a tired teacher energized by the excitement of her students.
Letting imagination soar - this is what the Writers-in-Schools program is all about. Through WISP, Alberta authors visit schools – both city and rural - across the province and present their work in ways that leave a lasting impression. Authors take time to interact with the students in small or large classroom settings, making the students understand that dreams can be achieved.
Some of these participating students will become the next published authors from Alberta. Most of these students will share their love of reading with their children, and some of those yet-to-be-born children will become the next published authors from Alberta. But more than that, soaring imagination will lead to the next astronaut in Canada’s Space Agency; the next engineer whose brilliant idea will move Alberta out of the fossil fuel industry; the next lawyer who works diligently for the homeless and disadvantaged. There is no limit to where imagination can take you!
The visits are coordinated by the Canadian Authors Association-Alberta Branch and done in both a timely and cost-efficient manner. By pairing local authors with local schools (or schools within 100 km radius of the author), students become aware that someone in their own community has succeeded. So why can’t they?

Who Will it Benefit?

Students from across the province will benefit from this program. Local authors (or those in the area) will make the trip to schools throughout their region and present to the students. As Alberta authors live in all communities, this means rural students as well as those living in the cities, will get the opportunity to participate.
Presentations/workshops are made at all age levels. Authors work with teachers to ensure the presentations are age-appropriate and often times curriculum-relevant as well. Authors use a variety of methods to ensure they keep the attention of the children as well as drive the students’ imaginations.
Teachers will also benefit as having writers in the classroom breathes life into their curriculum. It is a unique way to teach students as writers share their insights.
School boards benefit by having this incredible resource available to them at no charge. With the tight education budget, school boards struggle and this opportunity is a valuable one.
Parents benefit from the renewed vigour for the printed word that their children bring home with them.