As a child growing up in rural Kansas, I had no idea authors could come from here. I had never met one! That’s one of the reasons I love to connect with young people both in person and virtually: to show them they have the power—right now, right where they live—to make a difference.
I have created a variety of programs for all ages, including adults. If you’d like to invite me to speak about something that’s not listed here, let’s brainstorm.
Click here to contact me about speaking at your school, library, or event.
Click here for my school visit speaking fees for the 2022-2023 school year.
What a Farm Looks Like
(pre-K to grade 2)
In this ag-literacy storytime, we’ll take a virtual tour of my family’s Kansas farm, play “Guess the Grain,” and learn the ingredient that modern outdoor farms and indoor farms have in common: innovation. (30 minutes)
How to Write a Story
What makes a great story? I’ll share the must-have elements as well as where I get my ideas. Then we’ll brainstorm the bones of a new story together. Kids will walk away energized to tell their own unique stories. (30-45 minutes)
How a Book is Made
From idea to published book, we’ll delve into real talk about messy first drafts and revision as well as what happens to a book after it leaves an author’s hands. This session calls for volunteers! (45 minutes)
Your Voice Matters
We are all born with a superpower: a voice! Students will leave this session understanding that activism takes many forms. By tapping into our own passions and talents, we can all make a difference in our communities and the world. (45 minutes)
(grade 3 to adult)
I’ll share the story of the American Agriculture Movement farmers who drove their tractors to Washington, DC, in 1979 to protest unfair crop prices. While reporters spotlighted the farmers for jamming traffic, we’ll zoom in on what I found digging into the research: the story the farmers wanted to tell. (45 minutes)
Write Like a Journalist
Drawing from my years of experience as a newspaper reporter, editor, and columnist, I share tips and tricks for approaching writing for children through a journalist’s lens, including how to track down sources; how to prep for and conduct interviews; and how to earn readers’ trust in a critical time for information literacy. This talk focuses on nonfiction, but there will be many takeaways for fiction writers who strive for truth and authenticity. (1 hour)
Fact or Fake? Media Literacy Live
Research, fact-checking, and detecting bias in sources get a hands-on twist. We’ll stage a mock press conference where students will be tasked with filtering spin to write a true and balanced story.
Poetry and Activism
Through a series of exercises, students will explore their passions and talents to come up with a personalized formula for raising their voices and making a difference in the world. Then they’ll use what they’ve learned about themselves to write a biographical poem.
Conferences Where I’ve Spoken
- National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE)
- nErDcamp Pennsylvania
- nErDcamp Connecticut
- nErDcamp Kansas
- The Association for Rural and Small Libraries
- Texas Council of Teachers of English Language Arts
- South Carolina Association of School Librarians
- Missouri Association of School Librarians
- Wisconsin Educational Media & Technology Association
- Kansas Library Association
- Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) Mid-Atlantic
- SCBWI Kansas/Missouri
- Book Love Foundation
- An Open Book Foundation
- Flipgrid Live
- Faye B. Kaigler Children’s Book Festival
- Kansas Book Festival
- Beatrix Potter Society
- School Library Journal Day of Dialog
- Farm Bureau Foundation
- Various civic groups
- … and many schools nationwide!
“Lindsay Metcalf was a HUGE hit at Concordia Elementary! The students loved hearing about her life experiences and how she got ideas for her books. Lindsay engaged the students by using volunteers from the audience to present ‘real life’ steps to the writing process.”
—Mary Thoman, Literacy Support, Concordia Elementary, Concordia, KS
“Lindsay shared with two very different crowds for our Ag Day activities and we couldn’t be more pleased with her presentation. Her programs were engaging and educational. We can’t wait to have her back!” —Brandon Hines, director, Hays (KS) Public Library
“Lindsay’s passion for nonfiction and children’s books is evident in her work and presentations. She makes truth come alive on the page and find a way into your heart.” —Nicki Jacobsmeyer, co-regional adviser, Kansas/Missouri Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators