Touring In: Quebec
Genre: picture books, junior fiction, YA
Ideal Audience Size: Primary: 70-100; Junior: 100-200; for older audiences large numbers are possible if space and sound are adequate.
Maximum Audience Size: No maximum, but keep grade levels within 1 or 2 years of each other so that the presentation content will appeal to all children (i.e., Grades 4-6 not Grades 2-6).
Grades: Kindergarten-Grade 12
Special Equipment: An armless chair, a table for show and tell stuff. For junior grades and up, a projector/screen to hook my laptop up to comes in handy but is not mandatory. Sound equipment of any kind is usually not necessary unless we have a massive audience.
Winner of the 2014 John Spray Mystery Award
Shortlisted for the 2014 BC Stellar Award
Ted has presentations for grades K-12, using different material. They’re all interactive, fast-paced, funny, and with younger audiences especially, often involve music via Ted’s banjo or guitar.
In all cases Ted presents about the creative process: where stories come from and how they become books. He uses age-appropriate material from his own work to do this. Ted shares source materials and anecdotes, leads imagining activities about them, reads from his work to show the stories that resulted, and then shows manuscripts, editor’s comments and art work to demonstrate how many people contribute to a book and how ideas grow and change. Q&A time follows, with more show and tell, and, as noted above, there’s often some music to finish off.
PRIMARY GRADES (Kindergarten-Grade 3) SESSIONS last about 45 minutes. They’re built around Ted’s picture books and often his series of beginning novels about Morgan. There’s always music, a pretending activity between stories, lots of show and tell and well-paced fun.
JUNIOR GRADES (Grades 4-6) SESSIONS look at how stories often spring from real life material. Ted shares funny anecdotes, gets the audience to make imaginative suggestions to develop them further, and reads excerpts from his books to show how he used the ideas. Because Ted has written so many middle grade books the material can vary widely here with ages and interests. There is a longer time for Q&A and a more in-depth look at the writing/editing process, the message being writers are willing to listen and change their minds till they make the best choices. And, if there’s time, there’s music.
INTERMEDIATE/SENIOR GRADES (Grades 7-12) SESSIONS are similar to junior sessions, but using YA material like Ted’s novels in the Seven series, his award-winning mystery thriller Who I’m Not, and his Hi-Lo novels about teens and music. It is also assumed that kids will not be as vocal, so Ted’s source materials and anecdotes range wider. Here he works to not only show the creative process but hook potentially reluctant readers.
POV [Limelights series] (Orca Book Publishers, 2017)
Bounced (Scholastic Canada, 2017)
Harry And Clare’s Amazing Staycation (Tundra/Random House, 2017)
Speed [Seven series prequel] (Orca Book Publishers, 2016)
Morgan’s Got Game (Formac, 2014)
Coda [Seven series] (Orca Book Publishers, 2014)
Who I’m Not (Orca Book Publishers, 2013)
Ace’s Basement [Orca Currents series] (Orca Book Publishers, 2013)
Morgan On Ice (Formac, 2013)
Jump Cut [Seven series] (Orca Book Publishers, 2012)
Morgan Gets Cracking (Formac, 2012)
Power Chord [Orca Currents series] (Orca Book Publishers, 2011)
Morgan and the Dune Racer (Formac, 2010)
Music By Morgan (Formac, 2010)
The Dreadful Truth: Canadian Crime (Formac, 2006)
The Dreadful Truth: Gold Rush (Formac, 2008)
Puddleman (Red Deer Press, 1999)
Hope Springs A Leak (Red Deer Press, 1998)
Ted Staunton wrote his first story as an assignment at university. He almost forgot to hand it in on time, but he’s glad he did: it became the picture book Puddleman, and suddenly, almost by accident, he was an author. He always loved to read though, maybe because his parents took him to the library so often. Now he’s the award winning writer of over forty books, from YA and mid-grade novels (including titles in the popular SEVEN series) to Hi-Los, non-fiction, early chapter books, and of course picture books. He’s getting better at handing things in on time, too.
Ted’s YA novel Who I’m Not won the 2014 John Spray Mystery Award. His work has also been nominated for Silver Birch, Red Maple, Hackmatack, Arthur Ellis, and BC Stellar awards, and many of his books are on CCBC Our Choice lists.
Trained as a teacher, Ted is a speaker, performer, and workshop leader in schools, libraries and venues across Canada. As well, he teaches the Writing Children’s Fiction courses at George Brown College. He has also travelled to Ethiopia several times to work with English language writers and editors there.
When he’s not writing, Ted plays acoustic music, often in the Maple Leaf Champions Jug Band. (He always brings his guitar and banjo to school presentations as well.) He enjoys running, reading, and playing, writing and listening to music. Born young, he is now older. Ted and his family live in Port Hope, Ontario.
Who I’m Not
- Winner of the 2014 John Spray Mystery Award
- Shortlisted for the 2014 Arthur Ellis Award
- Shortlisted for the 2014 BC Stellar Award
- Shortlisted for the 2013 Red Maple Award
Hope Springs A Leak
- Shortlisted for the 1999 Silver Birch Award
- Shortlisted for the 1999-2000 Hackmatack Award
Praise for Ted Staunton
“(Ted) found himself unexpectedly in front of over 440 eager and excited students, from 8 different schools and from grades 3 to 8! Never missing a beat, he took up the challenge with panache and humour that in the end saw him motivating and instilling a belief in many students, that belief in oneself is the underlining foundation that they can do anything.”
—Karen Upper, Near North School Board
“It takes, creativity, confidence, and ability to keep an audience of teenagers engaged and inquisitive. Ted Staunton has all of these tremendous qualities…”
—Karen Eastman, Durham District School Board
“Ted’s presentation was energetic, informative, fun, and memorable. He grabbed the attention of the children from the moment he started speaking… His interactive presentation style was perfectly suited for the students…and concluded with a singalong on the banjo that had everyone jumping up and down in their chairs while squawking like a bunch of chickens. It was the perfect way to wrap up the presentation.”
—Joel A. Sutherland, Georgina Public Library