Learn from the Source

Many schools and colleges have discovered the advantages in having an author come in for a talk or writing workshop, or maybe a series of workshops. A visiting author can bring new idea and initiatives and processes that the usual class teacher or lecturer may not have thought of purely because they are looking from things from a different perspective.

Just as teachers and lecturers have different ways of handling a class so each writer has a unique perspective on the writing process. Because an author has a specialized knowledge of and enthusiasm for their own craft, they can be just the incentive a student needs to try writing their own poems, stories, songs, or novel. Even if they are not remotely interested in writing, it can provide fresh ways of looking at the world and of seeing what is right before them.

One workshop I have done which is successful with school aged children, college age students and adults even those in their eighties is to get them to write about the room they are in. It sounds dead easy doesn’t it? Or boring maybe. But it is an exercise that is anything but boring, as each person brings their own perspective to it.

Some people will be very literal about what is in the room and methodical and may even count the chairs stacked in the room as someone did once in a workshop I conducted. Others will include the window of the room and what they can see outside. Others will use some object on the room as a leaping off point for imagination. Still others will focus on the people in the room.

A visiting author can have such a passion for literature that it will infuses a love of books, reading and literature in others. I’ve been a visiting author in schools, primary and high schools and also seen other authors come into schools and seen the amazing effect it has on education. But more about that another time.

Related blogs

Drama in Education

The Value of a Mentorship

Poetry in Schools

Ethics Classes

Self Reflection as Self Motivation

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