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Free Author and Illustrator resources and virtual story times available online

8 April 2020                                                                                                

During the COVID-19 crisis, various authors and illustrators have been offering up free resources online including videos of themselves reading their books. Below is a short list of some of these plus other author and illustrator resources that may be of interest for primary and secondary aged students:

Mem Fox

Students are able to listen Mem Fox reading all of her books via her website. Click on each book and the audio is at the bottom of the page:


Oliver Jeffers

Author of the popular ‘The Day the Crayons Quit’ has videos of himself reading his books on his website:


David Walliams

English author David Walliams has been releasing a video a day of him reading one of his stories:


Dave Pilkey

Author of ‘Captain Underpants’ is offering free virtual readings and drawing lessons every Friday from April 10:


Story Box library

Story Box Library, an Australian website which hosts videos of various famous people reading popular children’s books, is providing free access for an initial two months during the COVID-19 outbreak period:


NSW Premier’s Reading Challenge (PRC) author and illustrator videos

The NSW PRC has a library of videos featuring interviews with authors and illustrators that would appeal to both primary and secondary students. Here you will find interviews with authors such as Morris Gleitzman  as well as a virtual tour of Aaron Blabey’s studio, an interactive drawing activity with illustrator Aura Parker and an indigenous storytelling activity in which students compose their own poem about their favourite object.

The full library of the NSW PRC Author and Illustrator videos are found on the link below under ‘Author and Illustrator Showcase 2017/2018/2019:


Little Scribe

Little Scribe, an online writing platform, have made 350+ writing resources free to parents and teachers. They also have videos from their online writing sessions, with authors such Andrew Daddo, on their Facebook page:



Free online drawing videos with various illustrators

Below contains links to various videos of illustrators, such as Mo Willems, who are offering free online drawing activities:


NCU is always here to provide copyright assistance and advice to schools and TAFEs. If you have any questions or need additional information, please visit Smartcopying website (https://www.smartcopying.edu.au) or you can contact us Tel: 02 7814 3855 and at smartcopying@det.nsw.edu.au

Australia’s education system is facing uncertain times due to the COVID-19 Crisis. The NCU has prepared an information sheet to provide some guidance. We will continue to update this as the situation develops.