Speaking at schools and festivals

I adore speaking at schools, festivals and other events. They are an opportunity for me to share the Billie and Ella love and talk to students and adults about ocean or elephant conservation and the book creation process.

For schools, I generally run sessions for K-6 classes. I adapt the sessions for each year group to ensure the discussion is appropriately targeted. While I am a picture book author, my presentations rely heavily on talking through the themes in the books. I find that older grades are equally engaged as the littlies. K-Year 1 session typically run for 30 minutes and Year 2-6 classes for 45 minutes.

More details on presentations, rates and testimonials are included below.

You can read more about my background and what I am up to here. Feel free to contact me with any questions at nicole[at]tuskbooks.com.

‘Billie’ presentations

Billie tells the story of a dolphin who sets off in search of the biggest wave, only to find new friends in dangerous situations. She encounters huge driftnets, ocean pollution, dolphins in captivity and much more. Key themes include ocean conservation and friendship.

My presentation centres on my picture book, Billie, includes a reading of Billie followed by an interactive discussion about dolphin and ocean wildlife conservation and issues. I use props and a wide range of photos to show the real world impact of the issues raised in the book such as ocean junk, pollution and huge driftnets.

I also talk about my motivation for writing Billie and how books can influence behavior. I then provide students with an overview of the book production process from the planning and drafting stage through to creation of a final book. Once again, this part is very interactive, with lots of input from the students. During this part of the session, I share some early concept drafts from the book and talk about how the illustrator and author work together.

You can download a comprehensive PDF outlining my Billie presentation here.

‘Billie’ school presentations

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‘Ella’ presentations

The picture book Ella tells the story of a baby elephant who is put to work entertaining tourists. The book takes the reader on a journey as Ella makes a brave escape to find her mum.

This presentation includes an interactive reading of Ella followed by a discussion about elephant habitats, food and key issues. I share information about the lives of elephants used in tourism, just like little Ella, and about other issues facing elephants such as ivory poaching and declining numbers. I also share stories from my time volunteering at an elephant sanctuary in Thailand.

An important part of the session is providing students with an overview of the book production process from the planning and drafting stage through to creation of a final book. As part of this discussion I share some early concept drafts from the book and talk about how the illustrator and author work together. You can download a comprehensive PDF outlining my Ella presentation below.

‘Ella’ school presentations

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Payment rates

Full day, half day and individual session rates are based on the Australian Society of Authors pay recommendations:

  • Whole school day – $700 (including three signed copies of Billie or Ella)
  • Half school day (2 sessions) – $450 (including two signed copies of Billie or Ella)
  • Per school session (max. 1 session) – $250 (including two signed copies of Billie or Ella)

Testimonials

During Book Week this year our school was privileged to host a little Canberra Treasure, Nicole Godwin. She is a local and has recently launched her most recent book, Billie. We have had ELC – Year 6 meet with her and she has captivated all age groups. She is absolutely wonderful. Nicole’s books send such a wonderful and relevant message, and with spectacular imagery.

Nicole discusses and brings awareness to the ocean environmental conservation, waste and the effect on animals. Billie is a great literature link with the curriculum and sustainability. She also talks and shows students how the writing and illustration process works. Nicole is passionate, relevant, knowledgeable, engaging and experienced in her presentation. I cannot recommend her enough – we have loved having her here.

Kathy Talbot
Teacher Librarian
Holy Spirit School