Entertaining lessons from a children’s book author for students, teaching staff and parents
Kindergarten to Year 12 students, teaching staff and parents
In another life Danny Parker worked as a nurse, an actor and an undertaker before settling into life as a drama teacher. He is currently the Head of Creative Arts at Mathew Flinders Anglican College on the Sunshine Coast.
A chance meeting with illustrator and author, Matt Ottley, lead to Danny’s first picture book Tree in 2012. Their second collaboration, Parachute, was shortlisted for the Children’s Book Council of Australia 2014 Picture Book of the Year award. He has since been awarded the Honour Book with Perfect and been shortlisted for a variety of different awards, including the prestigious Prime Minister’s Literary Awards for Children’s Literature.
Danny’s passion for writing little stories about big things has resulted in some beautifully precious picture books. Danny has worked with exceptional illustrators including Matt Ottley, Freya Blackwood and Nathaniel Eckstrom. Seven books have been released in his early-reader series ‘Lola’s Toy Box‘.
The themes covered in his picture books link strongly with the themes of Positive Education and Danny explores concepts such as relationships, positive emotions, personal resilience and gratitude using his stories and characters as points of reference. He also takes great delight in helping parents learn to read picture books “exploring that marvellous place where image and text intertwine to create something very special”.
Being an experienced drama teacher, Danny incorporates theatrical elements into his talks, which may include anything from juggling to guitar playing. His objective with his guest speaking is to leave the community richer than it started.
His diverse range of workshops and presentations are suitable for kindergarten to year 12 students, teaching staff and parents. Danny also enjoys creating bespoke sessions for specific occasions.
- What makes a story work?
- The ingredients of a story
- Lessons from writing for children – for students learning to write
- Positive behaviours from picture books
- The value of visual literacy
- Introducing your children to positive education
- Teachers guide to Picture books
- How to read a Picture book
- A practical introduction to physical games in the classroom
- Danny also enjoys creating bespoke sessions for specific occasions. Please see below for some recent examples.
- Danny is available for in person delivered workshops in Queensland and Western Australia. Online delivered workshops are also available.
- Please contact Nudge Productions directly to check availability and to request a quote.
Watch our Nudge Productions video about Danny:
More: Here is a selection of testimonials about Danny:
“He shared his wisdom and experience as well as loads of humour thrown in.” – Karina Higginson
“He was genuinely interested and encouraged us all to pursue writing.” – Heidi Weir
“Danny was a bundle of energy and enthusiasm.” – Christine Kelly
“Danny was inspiring and entertaining.” – Katie Gallagher
More details about some of Danny’s recent workshops with adults (teaching staff and parents):
Introducing your children to positive education
A look at the nature of positive education through the lens of a picture book. Danny gives a brief overview and guide to some key areas of Positive education then explores some entertaining and thought provoking ways of sharing this information with children through the medium of the Picture book. The session touches on areas of visual literacy and uses some of Danny’s own books as well as some well-known, much loved classics.
Teachers guide to Picture books
Using Danny’s own books, he’ll take your staff through the very intimate workings of the Picture Book writer. What is the relationship between the writer and the illustrator? The picture and the words? How does it all get put together and the business end. The workshop lets staff into some of the background to Danny’s work and offers many useful and practical suggestions as to how to engage your students in the classroom.
How to read a Picture book
In this workshop for Parents Danny will begin by reading you a story… but soon he’ll be taking you on a much bigger journey. How can you use a picture book with your children to prompt their own creativity? What is that unique X-factor that exists when you blend word and image. As the parent of two himself, Danny will help you unlock many of the subtle and perhaps deeper messages found in many quality Picture books. This workshop will help you share this unique genre with your family.
A practical introduction to physical games in the classroom
In this practical workshop your staff will explore the potential of practical drama type games in the classroom. Games to wake us up, to sharpen focus – games to challenge our view and help us appreciate the view of others.
Most importantly, a well-placed game can bring some much needed fun and focus into the room. This session is practical, inclusive and requires no previous drama experience. There a million descriptions of games on the web – but there is no substitute to actually playing them!