Our Head of Children’s and YA Programs, Amelia Lush, shares a treasure trove of the best creative activities to be found online, featuring the likes of Dav Pilkey, Sally Rippin (pictured), Neil Gaiman, Matt Stanton and Kate DiCamillo.

Young readers across the globe have been inundated with opportunities to create, draw and write alongside some of their favourite children’s authors and illustrators. I have been watching with envy as children and their parents share online the many remarkable projects they have created thanks to the careful guidance of professional story-makers!

We were all disappointed that the rock star of children’s literature Dav Pilkey wasn’t able to take to the Festival stage this year but I was delighted to see that Dav and his publisher Scholastic have set up Dav Pilkey at Home, an incredible resource of activities that will keep kids entertained for hours.

For the young writers-at-heart, Sally Rippin, former Festival guest (and nicest person in Australia) has launched her own Holiday Program! A different Billie B Brown story will be selected each week to be the focus of a series of fun activities written by Sally herself!

Two of Australia’s finest writers for young people, Nova Weetman and Emily Gale, have an in-depth online writing course for budding authors in years 4 to 8. You can try the first class for free, here.

Would-be 2020 Festival guest, author and illustrator Matt Stanton has a wealth of incredible drawing lessons on his YouTube channel. Learn to draw monsters, people and a long list of famous cartoon characters all from the comfort of your living room! 

Festival favourites, Real Pigeons duo Andrew McDonald and Ben Wood, have just launched their Super Coo Club – a nest full of pigeon stories, live drawing and creative challenges.

Creator of Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus and other titles, author and illustrator Mo Willems has a wonderfully in-depth drawing series Lunch Time Doodles, and British illustrator Rob Biddulph’s #DrawWithRob series has seen delighted children sharing their work on social media with the artist himself.

Recommendations lightning round

  • Did you know that Neil Gaiman has a website just for kids? You do now!