2015 Newcastle Writers Festival Kids Program launches

The 2015 Newcastle Writers Festival Kids Program is a celebration of literacy and creativity, offering a diverse range of inspirational events including workshops for secondary students.

The program is an enticing mix of author talks, workshops and activities set to light the fires of imagination in children of all ages.

For the first time the program includes events for secondary students, each of which was created to enhance the theme of ‘Discovery’, this year’s Higher School Certificate Area of Study in English. Visiting authors hosting these events include Melina Marchetta, who wrote Looking for Alibrandi, fantasy writer Garth Nix and local author Claire Dunn.

The calendar spans five days, and is a rich offering of forums giving children the opportunity to engage with inspiring authors and illustrators.

Festival director and UON graduate Rosemarie Milsom said the kids program had been expanded to build on the incredible success of last year’s event.

“We had more than 1500 kids attend last year and the feedback was fantastic,” Milsom said.

“This year’s program is even more diverse with the ANZAC Illustrated exhibition, which is a collection of original art works from children’s books, the launch of local author Susan Whelan’s new book, Don’t Think About Purple Elephants, as well as Family Fun Day, illustrating workshops and the secondary school program.”

Milsom said primary students had come from all over the Hunter last year, including from as far afield as Dungog.

“As an ex-English teacher, a writer and a mother of three, developing children’s literacy is very important to me,” she said. This year’s program is engaging and challenging; giving kids the opportunity to meet and interact with some of their favourite authors.”

The Newcastle Writers Festival Kids Program runs from Monday 16 March to Saturday 21 March.

Bookings open on Wednesday 4 February and can be made through Newcastle Regional Library via email: library@ncc.nsw.gov.au

For the full program and more information, visit newcastlewritersfestival.org.au

The University of Newcastle is a proud supporter of the Newcastle Writers Festival.

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