Schools Program

All Word for Word Festival Schools Program sessions are FREE for schools to attend, but places are limited. To register a school, grade or class contact us at

Presented in Partnership with Magabala Books – Australia’s leading Indigenous Publisher



Friday 20 November, 9.30am-10.30am

Recommended for: Young Primary Grades P-4

Aunty Fay Stewart MuirSue LawsonAunty Edie Wright

Boonwurrung Elder Aunty Fay Muir and award-winning children’s and YA author Sue Lawson are co-authors of children’s picture book series Our Place, which include the titles Respect and Family and, coming in 2021, the next book in the series, Share.

Beautiful and enjoyable, while containing important messages of tolerance and understanding, these books introduce young minds to the First Nations’ cultural philosophies that Aunty Fay holds close to her heart.

Aunty Fay and Sue will be joined in conversation by member of Magabala Books’ Board of Directors, Aunty Edie Wright, for a lively and fun discussion that will answer many questions in curious young minds and encourage tolerance and understanding.



Friday 20 November, 11.30am-12.30pm

Recommended for: Primary Grades 5-6, Secondary Years 7-8

Bruce PascoeHeather Threadgold

Bruce Pascoe has collected a swathe of literary awards for the seminal Dark Emu and now he has brought together the research and compelling first person accounts in a book for younger readers.Young Dark Emu – A Truer History asks young readers to consider a different version of Australia’s history pre- European colonisation.

A Yuin, Bunurong and Tasmanian man, in 2018 Bruce was awarded the Australia Council Award for Lifetime Achievement in Literature.

Join Bruce in conversation with anthropologist Heather Threadgold as he shares his writing journey and the research into early-European written accounts that led him to write Dark Emu; and a discussion that invites young minds to contemplate a different version of Australian history.



Friday 20 November, 2.00pm-3.00pm

Recommended for: Secondary Years 7-10

Kirli SaundersAunty Fay Stewart Muir

Poet, artist, playwright, educator, novelist – these are just some of the many hats worn by Gunai woman Kirli Saunders. Named NSW Aboriginal Woman of the Year in 2020, Kirli is an internationally-recognised award-winning writer of plays, poetry and picture books, who has worked with communities to create poetry in First Languages. Her books include adult poetry collection Kindred and her latest, the upcoming children’s novel in verse, Bindi.

Kirli will be joined by linguist, educator and author Aunty Fay Muir for an inspiring conversation about following your passion and exploring different forms of writing and expression to make sense of the world around us and the deep emotions that unite us all.


To register a school, grade or class for one of these online events email