Michelle Worthington

Michelle Worthington

Queensland

Speaker type

  • Author
  • Motivational
  • Virtual visits
available for virtual visits

Michelle Worthington is an award-winning children's author and international guest speaker on the importance of reading and the power of storytelling. A full-time fiction and screenwriter based in Brisbane, Michelle credits her three sons for giving her an endless source of inspiration, as well as her wrinkles.

Two-time finalist of the CBCA Picture Book of the Year Award and two-time winner of the International Book Award and finalist in the USA Best Book Awards, she received a Gellett Burgess Award and a Silver Moonbeam award for her contribution to diversity in children's literature with stories that celebrate children of all abilities. She was awarded an AusMumpreneur Gold Award and Best Start up Business in the Redlands BaR awards for her work with aspiring creatives of all ages to share their story.

Whether she’s a book fairy, a pirate or an elf, Michelle encourages all her readers to dream big.

Michelle fairy

Large Group Presentations

Tell me a Story

This session is designed for medium to large groups and can be run in school halls, libraries or classrooms. The powerpoint presentation has been designed to introduce the student to Michelle Worthington and her books, what it’s like to be an author, how she comes up with her ideas, and even what her boys think about getting picked up from school when their mum is dressed up as a fairy!
Time: 30 to 60 minutes
Maximum Size: none
Technology required: A data projector and screen.

FAQ: What is the maximum session size?
The maximum session size varies and is listed beside each workshop. Large group presentations can accommodate any number of students and workshops are capped at 60.

 author

Junior School Workshops

Workshop 1: Curious Creatures, Wild Minds Book Week Workshop

Children will be transported on an exciting adventure and through the magic of storytelling, will meet a host of interesting Australian Animals along the way. Inspired by The Bedtime Band, The Three-Legged Kangaroo from Uluru and Possum Games, students will create their own animal characters. Learn how to create a little storytelling magic!
Curriculum Link: Narratives – Focus on storytelling and oral language development, as well as developing a character and structuring a simple narrative plot.
Time: 60 minutes
Maximum Size: Children will need to be seated with a pen and paper in the space available
Technology required: A data projector and screen
Drawing/Writing Materials Required: Pencils and paper

Workshop 2: Once Upon A Whoops! NAPLAN Writing Strategies for Juniors

This writing workshop combines fairy tale themes and improvised storytelling with creative writing. Students will explore the elements of fairy tales and narratives, as they follow the prompts inspired by Hootie The Cutie and Johnny’s Beard. Settings, good and bad characters, plots, problems and imaginative items will be woven into twisted fairy tales. Through oral storytelling and creative writing, they will bring their story to life.
Curricumlum Link: Fairy Tales – Focus on generating original ideas and introducing the essential elements of narratives – setting/character/plot
Time: 60 minutes
Maximum Size: Children will need to be seated with a pen and paper in the space available
Technology required: A data projector and screen
Drawing/Writing Materials Required: Pencils and paper

Workshop 3: It’s a Pirate Party

What would happen if you found a chest of interesting objects and treasures? What clues might these things give you about the pirate who owns this bag? We read two different pirate stories, The Pink Pirate and The World’s Worst Pirate to help children create characters, describe settings, plot an exciting story and start making their very own book.
Curriuculm Link – Essential elements of narrative writing – Focus on developing characters/plots through story mapping
Time: 60 minutes
Maximum Size: Children will need to be seated with a pen and paper in the space available
Technology required: A data projector and screen
Drawing/Writing Materials Required: Pencils and paper

 Workshop 4: Pyjama Party

Come to school dressed in your pyjamas to celebrate the best-selling book Pug’s Don’t Wear Pyjamas. Students will discuss character creation, sizzling story starters and how to use real life situations in creative writing.
Curriculum – Essential elements of narrative writing – Focus on developing characters/plots through story mapping
Time: 30 minutes
Maximum Size: Children will need to be seated with a pen and paper in the space available
Technology required: A data projector and screen
Drawing/Writing Materials Required: Pencils and paper

 Middle/Senior School Workshops

 Workshop 5: Sizzling Story Starters

Since the dawn of time, humans have told stories to each other – powerful stories about their life experiences and funny stories to entertain their friends and family. This workshop combines writing and performing arts to engage children in the art of story creation inspired and use picture books as springboards for developing original and interesting innovations. Because these stories have similar patterns and make use of repetition and rhyme, the student’s innovations will lend themselves easily to inspire children to tell a story that reveals something about themselves.
Curriculum link: NAPLAN Developing narratives using a set structure, focus on oral storytelling
Time: 60 minutes
Maximum Size: Children will need to be seated with a pen and paper in the space available
Technology required: A data projector and screen
Drawing/Writing Materials Required: Pencils and paper

 Workshop 6: Creating Cool Characters

Creating Cool Characters is a creative writing format that puts the writer straight into the heart of story. Inspired by Noah Chases the Wind and Yellow Dress Day, the decisions these young writers make, and the options they choose, will determine exactly how their particular adventure story unfolds. Children will need to generate a host of creative ideas, as well as apply logic and higher order thinking skills to weave their way through the writing process and solve the problems that arise. Both sides of the brain will get a workout here! Activities are designed to extend children’s creative writing and thinking skills, as well as inspire a love of language and storytelling.
Curriculum link; NAPLAN Adventure/Fantasy/ Hero’s Journey – Focus on plotting/planning an adventure style story, developing main characters and creating interesting plots.
Time: 60 minutes
Maximum Size: Children will need to be seated with a pen and paper in the space available
Technology required: A data projector and screen
Drawing/Writing Materials Required: Pencils and paper

 

Workshop 7: Creative Business Basics

Hear from international award-winning author and businesswoman Michelle Worthington as she shares her journey to starting her own successful creative business. Students will have the opportunity to interact and ask questions about what it takes to be an Australian entrepreneur and founder of a startup. Topics covered include idea generation, marketing and promotion, time management and resilience techniques.
Business Basics – setting up and running a small business – marketing and promotion – life skills
Time: 60 minutes
Maximum Size: unlimited
Technology required: A data projector and screen

Willing Kids Program

Willing kids is a wholistic program is dedicated to improving children’s mental health through literacy and improving literacy by focusing on better mental health.
It encourages children of all abilities to talk about making good choices and gives them the tools they need to thrive by supporting their mental health through sensory storytelling.
In order to learn effectively, kids need to be happy. Happiness is a habit. By making conscious choices, kids can choose their own pathways to manage their anxiety. Anxious kids going to anxious adults. Kids can't do it alone. Parents and teachers are given the training through the willing kids program to break the cycle and stigma of mental health.

Mental health disorders at the most common disease of childhood In Australia. 13.9% of kids aged 4 to 17 years have been diagnosed with a mental health disorder. Mental health problems affect about one in 10 children. They include depression and anxiety and are often a direct response to what is happening in their lives. The exact cause of most mental health disorders is not known, but research suggests that a combination of factors, including genetics, biology, trauma and environmental stress are involved. Anxiety is the leading mental health issue, with doctors in research by suggesting it is rising with about a 20% increase in diagnosis over the last 5 years. Research suggests 50% of mental illness begins by age 4 and can often start with low self-esteem. Children can experience anxiety from as young as 18 months and while it is normal to feel some anxiety at this age comma the disorder is most common in children aged 7 to 9. Anxiety affects every aspect of a child’s life, from eating to learning, making friends and everything in between. Sometimes it's important to go back to the basics.
Our Willing Kids stories serve two purposes.
1. improve mental health
2. improve literacy

Our stories are available as online animations and as picture books.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T3-iYtJ14vk&t=148s


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YsxYv6Kpj0A&t=22s


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0zvqKBP5l2c&t=1s


Time: 30 minutes
Target Audience: Kindy, Preschool, Prep, Grade 1
Technology required: A data projector and screen

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Testimonials

  • Our visit from Michelle was fantastic.

    Star of the Sea Primary School, Gladstone - February 2019

    Star of the Sea Primary School, Gladstone - February 2019
    Michelle Worthington
  • Thank you so much for the stories and for coming and taking the time to work with our students. I have heard many positive stories and comments from staff around the school and I look forward to continuing our journey next year."

    Narbethong State Special School - 2018

    Narbethong State Special School - 2018
    Michelle Worthington
  • Resilience, Confidence and Co-operation! This was the inspiring message presented to our Year 2 Students as part of the Books in Homes program last month. As part of the Books in Homes Event, Year 2 students had the opportunity to meet with successful Brisbane-based children's author Michelle Worthington. Michelle encouraged the students to try many different activities in primary school - including writing - so they can find what they love and are good at. I'm looking forward to wonderful narratives next year.

    Durack State Primary School - 2018

    Durack State Primary School - 2018
    Michelle Worthington
  • We were absolutely transfixed by your Presentation. I have never had so many Members approach me to thank me for finding you for our club. Quite a group of us always have coffee downstairs after our Meeting & we all agreed that we were indeed very privileged to have you share your story with us.

    I have been lucky enough to find some very interesting people to speak to us this year; they all have been great but you were by far the most talented & accomplished speaker we have had – not just this year but over my time at our View club.


    Moreton Bay View Club - October 2019

    Moreton Bay View Club - October 2019
    Michelle Worthington
  • What I think is important is that your ideas are successful with students and that you quickly engage them, they learn to trust your work, knowledge and feedback. I think your breakdown of teaching sequence is clear and easy to follow and you sell it in your presentations. The feedback from my Grade 5 class after today's workshop was very positive.

    St Columba's Catholic Primary School - March 2019

    St Columba's Catholic Primary School - March 2019
    Michelle Worthington
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Michelle Worthington