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Writers at school


Howard Richler

Children's literature, Creative non-fiction


Howard Richler

Howard Richler has written the 'Speaking of Language' language column in The Gazette since 1992. His magazine contributions include National Lampoon, Reader's Digest, Canadian Author & Bookman and Stitches. He has written extensively for the American language journals Word Ways and Verbatim. Presently, he is doing a language feature on the CBC Radio program, All in a Weekend. His books include The Dead Sea Scroll Palindromes, Take My Words, and A Bawdy Language.

Suggested reading*

The Dead Sea Scroll Palindromes
Take My Words
Global Mother Tongue
Can I Have a Word With You

*These titles have been suggested by the author based on the activities that he/she proposes to students.
It is, however, up to teachers to verify whether the titles are appropriate for their groups (age and education level, specific context, etc.).
Teaching staff are invited to contact the author for clarification on this aspect and assistance in preparing their groups for his/her visit.

Proposed approach and type of activities

The workshop basically seeks to convey to students the idea that using language can be a fun-filled activity. Students are made aware of the magic of words in that every word must be created and many words have interesting histories and origins. For older students, the author explains that many people try to manipulate the meaning of words and that they should be aware that language is rarely vague or neutral. He also explains the interconnectedness of Canada's two founding languages, French and English.

Examples of activities

With all students, the author introduces his talks by giving them some word puzzles and at the end of the presentation someone wins a book prize. He tries to teach participants that one can write clearly using simple words and in order to illustrate this point, he asks them to write a composition having a minimum of 50 words by using only monosyllabic words.

Special conditions

For information

Howard Richler
Phone : 514 933-8930
Other phone : 514 347-2846
Email :

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All levels

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