Intro to Writing Children’s Literature

Language, Literature & Performing Arts
Creative Writing
Course Code
CRWR 1104
Semester Length
15 weeks
Max Class Size
Method Of Instruction
Typically Offered
To be determined


Course Description
This course concentrates on writing for children and young adults. It includes instruction in writing fiction and non-fiction in a variety of forms, with emphasis on appropriate structures and styles for various age groups, and on how to create convincing and appealing characters. While students will read published works of children’s literature, the emphasis is on student work, which is discussed in a workshop.
Course Content

Selected stories from classic and contemporary children’s literature, including the picture book, chapter books, and the treatment of non-fiction for children. Student exercises and manuscripts will form the bulk of the course content. The four major written assignments will include the text for a picture book, not to exceed 1500 words; the outline for a chapter book and two sample chapters; a piece of non-fiction of 1500 words; and a free choice assignment that allows the student to write for the age group and in the form that most interests him or her.

Methods Of Instruction

The bulk of the classes will be conducted in the workshop format; however, the instructor may use a portion of class time for lectures on various points of craft, such as creating characters children can relate to, making plots to fit the various forms children’s literature takes, and considering age-appropriate styles. Students will also be discussing examples of children’s literature.

Means of Assessment

A minimum of four assignments must be submitted for class discussion, including the text for a picture book and chapters of a short chapter book.  The class assignments will comprise 70% of the course grade.  Other evaluations will be based on student response to published works of children’s literature (10%), and class participation (20%).

Students are required to attend 80% of the workshops.  A student missing more than 20% of the workshops without receiving prior permission from the instructor will receive a “0" in class participation.  Leaving after the break is considered half an absence.

Learning Outcomes

The student will learn the techniques of plot and character development as they apply to stories and short novels for children.  The student will learn to recognize and produce appropriate subject matter and styles for children of various ages.  The student will learn to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of student writing, and give and take criticism that is specific and constructive.  The student will also learn to develop time management skills, especially the responsibility for setting and reaching deadlines.

Textbook Materials

Textbooks and Materials to be Purchased by Students

A text such as Writing for Children and Teens by Marion Crook (1998, Self Counsel Press) may be required.



Any College entrance Language Proficiency Requirement with the exceptions of the Douglas College Course Options in ELLA or ENGU and the assessments listed below. These require the specified higher standard for entry into CMNS, CRWR and ENGL courses.
• a minimum grade of C- in ELLA 0460, or a minimum grade of C- in both ELLA 0465 and 0475, OR
• a minimum grade of C- in ENGU 0450 or ENGU 0455 or ENGU 0490, OR
• Mastery in ELLA 0330 and any two of ELLA 0310, 0320, or 0340, OR
• TOEFL overall score of 83 with a minimum of 21 in Writing, OR
• IELTS overall score of 6.5 with no band below 6.0; for individual bands below 6.0:
       • if in Speaking, ELLA 0210 required
       • if in Reading or Listening, ELLA 0220 required
       • if in Writing, ELLA 0230 and ELLA 0240 required
• CLB score of 8, OR
• CEFR level B2+, OR
• CAEL minimum overall and essay score of 70 (computer or paper based), OR
• recognized equivalent or exemption.


ENGL 1112 recommended but not required.


Courses listed here are equivalent to this course and cannot be taken for further credit:

  • No equivalency courses

Course Guidelines

Course Guidelines for previous years are viewable by selecting the version desired. If you took this course and do not see a listing for the starting semester / year of the course, consider the previous version as the applicable version.

Course Transfers

Institution Transfer Details Effective Dates
Capilano University (CAPU) CAPU ENGL 292 (3) 2004/09/01 to -
Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU) KPU CRWR 1XXX (3) 2004/09/01 to -
Langara College (LANG) LANG ENGL 1XXX (3) 2004/09/01 to -
Simon Fraser University (SFU) SFU GE 1XX (3) 2004/09/01 to -
Thompson Rivers University (TRU) TRU ENGL 1XX (3) 2004/09/01 to 2010/08/31
Thompson Rivers University (TRU) TRU ENGL 1XXX (3) 2010/09/01 to -
Trinity Western University (TWU) No credit 2004/09/01 to -
University of British Columbia - Okanagan (UBCO) UBCO CRWR 116 (3) 2005/05/01 to 2016/08/31
University of British Columbia - Vancouver (UBCV) UBCV CRWR 1st (3) 2004/09/01 to -
University of Northern BC (UNBC) UNBC ENGL 1XX (3) 2004/09/01 to -
University of the Fraser Valley (UFV) UFV ENGL 1XX (3) 2004/09/01 to -
University of Victoria (UVIC) UVIC WRIT 1XX (1.5) 2004/09/01 to -

Course Offerings

Fall 2021

There aren't any scheduled upcoming offerings for this course.