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Writing for Children

This course is currently unavailable for booking

There are currently no upcoming dates available for this course. Be the first to know when new dates are announced by joining the mailing list.

How do grown-ups write for children and what do children even like reading?

From modern classic 'The Gruffalo' to the award-winning Onjali Q. Rauf’s 'The Boy At The Back of the Class', successful children’s literature is a diverse and constantly changing field within the publishing world.

Writing for Children is a practical creative writing course that gives you the tools to write with confidence.

Taught by a published children’s writer, the course provides a framework for pursuing independent writing projects as well as giving you an insight into the publishing world.

This course will use extracts from published books to inspire new writing, and the supportive workshop environment will help students polish their work.

Learning and teaching

The module will be delivered through 10 two-hour sessions, made up of lectures, class discussions, small group work and debates. Class sessions will be supplemented by resources available to students via Learning Central.

Topics may include:

  • creative writing skills: fundamental terminology and concepts relevant to children’s literature
  • exploration of contemporary trends, styles and developments in children’s literature
  • discussion of published examples of children’s literature
  • revision, feedback, and reflection
  • publishing children’s literature.

Coursework and assessment

To award credits, we need to have evidence of the knowledge and skills you have gained or improved.

Some of this has to be in a form that can be shown to external examiners so that we can be absolutely sure that standards are met across all courses and subjects.

The most important element of assessment is that it should enhance your learning.

Our methods are designed to increase your confidence and we try very hard to devise ways of assessing you that are enjoyable and suitable for adults with busy lives.

Students will complete a creative writing portfolio and write reflectively about their own process. The portfolio will be around 1,800 words in length.

Reading suggestions

You may find the following texts useful as introductions but a full reading list will be given at the beginning of the module.

  • Butler, Catherine, and Kimberley Reynolds, eds. Modern Children's Literature: An Introduction. Macmillan International Higher Education, 2014.
  • Hahn, Daniel. The Oxford companion to children's literature. Oxford Quick Reference, 2015.
  • Hunt, Peter, ed. Children's literature: critical concepts in literary and cultural studies. Routledge, 2006.
  • Joosen, Vanessa. Adulthood in Children's Literature. Bloomsbury Publishing, 2018.

Library and computing facilities

As a student on this course you are entitled to join and use the University’s library and computing facilities. Find out more about using these facilities.


Our aim is access for all. We aim to provide a confidential advice and support service for any student with a long term medical condition, disability or specific learning difficulty. We are able to offer one-to-one advice about disability, pre-enrolment visits, liaison with tutors and co-ordinating lecturers, material in alternative formats, arrangements for accessible courses, assessment arrangements, loan equipment and dyslexia screening.