Tips

There are many ways to make the most out of your Kiwi Author Pen Pals experience. ​The fun and enjoyment you have is only limited by your imagination!

But, here are a few ideas to get you started…

FOR AUTHORS AND ILLUSTRATORS

  • Send a physical postcard or letter, handwritten or typed.
  • Send a copy of your book/s (if you’re happy to gift to the class or maybe the school will offer to pay).
  • Send a photo of you and your book/s.
  • Send other photos of your writing space, your favourite books, your pets, etc.
  • Recommend a recent book you’ve read and loved.
  • Ask the children to recommend a book to you that they’ve recently read and loved.
  • Talk about your favourite ever children’s books, both old and new.
  • Ask the children to come up with their own list of favourite books.
  • Give the children a writing or drawing prompt.
  • Ask the children to send you a story or a drawing.
  • Ask the children to send you a list of questions you can answer in your next letter.
  • Talk about being a writer or illustrator and what your job entails.
  • Give ideas on where your inspiration comes from.
  • Talk about how you became a creator.
  • Share any writing/illustration competitions or opportunities your classes might like to enter.
  • Direct classes to your website or other New Zealandcreator websites that might be helpful.
  • Always ALWAYS ensure any and all content you direct children to is 100% age appropriate.

FOR SCHOOLS

  • Send a physical postcard or letter, handwritten or typed.
  • Allow the children to reply individually, in groups, or as a whole class. 
  • Encourage the children to talk about the books their Pen Pal has recommended.
  • Create a board or wall in the classroom to pin up their Pen Pals letters. 
  • Make and decorate a library or classroom letterbox for children to use.
  • Suggest the children recreate the cover of their Pen Pal’s book/s, or another book they like. 
  • Send their Pen Pal photos of the classroom or school, perhaps the library or a display of everyone’s favourite books. 
  • Share Kiwi Author Pen Pals excitement and correspondence on social media and in the school newsletters. 
  • If technology and time allows, invite their Pen Pal to pop in for a live video chat, or record a video to send to their Pen Pal. 
  • Encourage students to ask questions about reading or writing or being a book creator.
  • Let the children take the lead and love their experience! 

If you would like to send us any other ideas, or indeed any photos, videos, documents, or links that show how you’re celebrating having an Author Pen Pal, we’d love to see them!

Send it to kate@kiwikidsbookstore.nz and we’ll add them to our website with your permission! (P.S. Don’t forget to get permission from anyone and everyone who’s in the photo first!)