Presentations & Workshops

I have been visiting schools and libraries across Canada in my capacity as an author, storyteller and educator since 2004. Without a doubt, I find as much joy in the interaction I have with children as I do in the stories I write for them.

I have presentations and writing workshops appropriate for students from preschool to grade nine, and for adults too. Below are brief descriptions of what I am currently offering, but a more complete information brochure, including recommendations and package deals can be emailed to you upon request. Use the contact page or email me directly at

I also have a wealth of creative writing exercises and lessons that I’ve created or collected for the purpose of teaching concepts to students in a fun and challenging way. Consider bringing me in for a day or for a week, to teach one class or several. Use the contact page or email me directly at and we can explore it further.

Dan Bar-el presenting before children

“Dan Bar-el was a huge hit with kids and adults alike at our libraries. His books are excellent and his comedic acting background serves him extremely well as a presenter. We heard from many library staff and teachers that Dan’s visit was the best author program they’d ever seen!”

Kim Davison, Library Programs Coordinator, Fraser Valley Regional Library

FAKE NEWS / CREATIVE WRITING – Workshop (available online too)

This is a new workshop as of May, 2020, connected to my new website, A Child’s First Book of Lies. Aimed for grade 6 and up (but will be open to keen grade 5 students), this workshop explores descriptive writing, parody, and looking at the world through a different perspective. Participants are invited to share work on the Child’s First Book of Lies website afterwards.

“Thanks for that great workshop this afternoon! …. A Child’s Book of Lies is very timely – one of the TLs was talking about Fake News in the thread just this afternoon, so it will be well received!Ms Evans, Teacher-Librarian, Tyee Elementary School, Vancouver, BC (online workshop)

THE VERY, VERY FAR NORTH – Presentation (available online too)

Grades 3-6. This year I am pleased to introduce the first of two books involving a most agreeable polar bear named Duane, and the eclectic friends he keeps company with.

After so many years of giving big, boisterous presentations, I now have a book that demands a more intimate approach. Students will be introduced to these funny characters and hear some of their adventures in a place few of us have visited but that all of us hold dear in our collective imagination. Our group discussions built off the book will involve the rewards and challenges of friendship.

“Thank you to Vancouver Writers Fest and ‘Writers in the Classroom’ for hosting the incredible writer, Dan Bar-el. He was extremely engaging and well prepared for the presentation. He sparked thought and conversation about the evolution of friendship from the moment we first meet someone, and he presented some of the characters and their interesting friendships in his novel, The Very, Very Far North. Thank you, Dan Bar-el!” – Shelley Weir, Teacher, Sir Richard McBride School Annex, Vancouver (online presentation)

The Author Presentation (available online too)

Grades 4-6. Built around introducing my recent middle grade novel, Audrey (cow), this session talks about humor, character voice, and how I became an author. It’s goal is to link the stories and ideas that students read to the writer behind them.

Dan Bar-el active storytelling

Fun & Silly Storytelling      

Grades K-1, 2-4. Age appropriate in length and content. Among other stories, the picture books presented and told will include Not Your Typical Dragon, Nine Words Max, A Fish Named Glub, & Such a Prince.

Writing a Graphic Novel (the words behind the pictures)workshop

Grades 5-8. This one-hour session looks at the word vs. picture relationship, framing, describing integral information, conveying all the senses, the strengths and weaknesses of the form and what makes graphic novel’s unique.

A Buffet of Creative Writing Workshops (available online too)

For the past ten years, I have been teaching creative writing courses for children all around the Lower Mainland through an organization called CWC. It has also allowed me the opportunity to be part of creative writing summer camps in South Korea, and to lead mini workshops in Seoul libraries and at the Canadian Embassy. Over the years, I have created lots of exercises and teaching units filled with fun and useful ways to inspire students to engage in writing.

Last year, I began offering schools and libraries open-ended creative writing sessions built around your requests.

– Would you like a session with an assortment of writing exercises for students to flex their creative muscles?

– Would you like a session that explores comedy writing?

– Would you like a session that plays with words and poetry?

creative writing workshops 3

– How about something a little more active, incorporating some storytelling elements or public speaking in a supportive environment?

– Would you like multiple sessions or perhaps a day-long workshop?

– I even have a five-session adventure writing unit built upon the “Heroes Journey”

creative writing workshops 4

Character Voice & Dialogue Workshop

Grades: 7-9. In 60 – 90 minutes, this workshop is about learning how to find the unique voice hidden in each character we create. We let them speak how they want to speak, but only if they have a good reason to speak.

Dan Bar-el presentations