UK and International School Specialists
Working with over 5000 schools in the UK
Over 800 International Schools in more than 65 countries.
Karen Langtree
Karen Langtree

All About Karen Langtree

About Karen

Karen has been working with Authors Abroad for many years, in schools all over England. She is a writer, singer, songwriter, playwright and teacher, using all these skills in delivering exciting, interactive workshops, visits and talks to primary and secondary schools.

She was a primary school teacher for over 20 years before making the move to her writing career. Her tag line, ‘Inspiring Creativity’ sums up who Karen is; a thoroughly creative person, who loves inspiring others to explore their own creativity and use their imagination.

One of her favourite quotes is from Einstein:
‘Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination circles the world.’

 

Karen’s Visits and Workshops

Karen works with all ages, from Early Years, through Key Stages 1 and 2, to Secondary and A-Level students.

Primary Schools

Her visits vary, according to the focus of the school and age of the pupils. She has lots of different workshops and likes inventing bespoke workshops to meet your needs. She does interactive assemblies, (sometimes involving songs) inspiring children to explore their potential and believe in themselves.

One of her most popular author days involves bringing along a live character from her book, Knights of the Wobbly Table…to date her best seller. Sir Trumpsalot brings lots of laughs and excitement, playing a full part in drama, singing, role play, Q & A sessions. All the activities are designed to bring the children to a point where they develop their own creative writing, at the same time inspiring them to want to delve into the wonders of reading books.

Testimonials

‘Children loved hearing about your inspiration for stories and were fully engaged during the practical session. Some great ideas have been generated this morning.’ – Teacher, The Minster School, York

 “Thank you for your very professional input to our day. A great end to book week! The children were very positive in their comments.” – Andrew Spencer, Deputy Head, Portobello Primary School, Durham

“The children got a lot from their morning with you. Once again it was a huge success. I am delighted.” – Claire Williams, Lumley Junior School, Durham

 

Musicals and using music to enhance Literacy

Karen is a teacher of piano and singing: a skilled musician and composer of musicals for schools, which can be purchased on her website and also through Kevin Mayhew Ltd. She often involves those musical skills in her author visits. She does a day called Making a Musical, (suitable for Years 5&6) which involves using language skills, writing play scripts, lyrics, poetry, story composition, drama, the highlight being song writing in small groups with Karen’s guidance at the keyboard.

Testimonials

‘Wonderfully fun way of teaching rhyme and rhythm. Full participation – all children (and adults) engaged and involved in activities – super pace – multi sensory approach – perfect!’ – Year 4 teacher, North Frodingham Primary, East Yorks

‘We all really enjoyed the day very much and the children enjoyed meeting a ‘real life author’ and, in particular, the singing aspect with the older ones.’ –  Gail Brown, Head teacher, Crayke Primary, N Yorks

 

 

Her musicals have been performed across schools worldwide, and her nativity, Angel Small, (suitable for Key Stage 1) has received great praise from parents and teachers, especially for the songs and positive messages in the play. Karen has also developed the original musical into two wonderful picture story books; Angel Small and Angel Small Follows the Star were created in collaboration with Illustrator, Gill McLean. Gill has worked with many of the major publishing companies, their partnership is flourishing, and Gill also does art-based workshops in schools. The books, having been seen by the publishing giant SPCK, led to her being commissioned to write a picture book about the Easter story, called Heaven’s Secret, due to be published in 2020.

 

Secondary Schools

Karen has worked with secondary schools using her Young Adult trilogy, the first two books in this Dystopian, Post-Apocalyptic series being:

Breaking Silence

Breaking Lies

The third book is now being written and Karen can work with secondary schools, involving students in the process and progress of writing the book, with interactive editing workshops. This can be a one-off event or an ongoing project.

Schools involved in the first two books have found this an exciting programme to be involved in, and understanding the process gives insight and awareness into what it takes to publish a novel. The project can also be successfully integrated with Business Studies.

Testimonial

“Thank you for coming to our school and talking to our class. You have really inspired me to start writing books.” – Year 8 Pupil, Ryedale Secondary School, N Yorks

 

 

Archbishop of York’s Trust

Karen and Gill were also given the opportunity by the Archbishop of York’s Trust, to create the stories and illustrations for The Young Leaders’ Award for Key Stage 1 students. This was launched in January 2019 at the Archbishop of York’s Palace.

The Award fosters a Growth Mindset and ties in with Ofsted KS1 Inspection Links (SMSC), promoting British Values. It is Curriculum linked delivering on aspects of;

Personal, Social, Health and Economic Education

Citizenship

Religious Education

https://www.archbishopofyorkyouthtrust.co.uk/young-leaders-award/

Karen’s Books

Key Stage 1

Angel Small and Angel Small Follows the Star

angel small

These two picture books tell the story of Christmas from the point of view of a little Angel who thinks he is too insignificant to go to earth and find out what is happening. In the second book however, he finds the confidence to guide three troublesome camels across the desert to find the baby Jesus. The books link to the Nativity musical, Angel Small.

Key Stages 1 and 2

 

Fairy Rescuers and Return to Elysia

Two adventures about Ellie and Lucy who find an injured fairy and have to discover a way back to the Kingdom of Elysia on two different rescue missions. These stories promote teamwork and cooperation. They appeal to children aged 6 to 10.

Knights of the Wobbly Table

A hilarious tale of trumping, time-travelling knights who find themselves caught up in a tale of medieval mischief and a rather unusual 21st century dragon. Appeals to children aged 6 – 10.

 

Key Stages 2 and 3

My Wicked Stepmother

A diary book written by a 12 year-old girl about what happens to her when she acquires a stepmother. The title is a play on the traditional meaning of wicked and aims to crush stereotypes. This is a funny story that will also tug at the heart strings as well as encouraging empathy and good discussion. She also texts her best friend with everything going on in her life.
Appeals to ages 10 – 13.

 

Key Stages 3 and 4

The Breaking Trilogy

Breaking Silence is the first in a dystopian trilogy, set in the north of England in 2066. A corrupt government have taken over the country, and want to destroy the ‘surplus population.’ Silence Hunter finds himself on the run from one of their detention centres. He meets Chas, a fifteen-year old girl, who lives in a commune and trusts no one. Having first threatened to kill him, she gradually learns to trust him and becomes vital to his quest and the subsequent struggle, in Breaking Lies, to bring down the government. The final part of the trilogy is due for publication at the end of 2019.

 

Go Grace Darling: A Musical for Key Stage 2 or 3

An exciting musical about the Victorian heroine Grace Darling. Hers is a story of immense courage and unwanted fame. There are nail biting moments when Grace rows out to rescue the survivors of a shipwreck. And funny moments when Grace has to fend off unwanted suitors! This story is part of the KS2 History curriculum on Victorians.

School for Angels: A Musical for Key Stage 2

This is a great twist on the retelling of the nativity story. Three little angels are trying to earn their wings at angel school. They must pay attention and remember the Nativity story. They are cheeky and keep getting into trouble whilst still managing to find out what happened that first Christmas. This is definitely a production for KS2 as there are lots of parts to learn. Great songs with solo parts accompany this production.

Reviews and Recommendations

‘Wonderfully fun way of teaching rhyme and rhythm. Full participation  – all children (and adults) engaged and involved in activities – super pace – multi sensory approach – perfect!’ – Year 4 teacher, North Frodingham Primary, East Yorks

‘Children loved hearing about your inspiration for stories and were fully engaged during the practical session. Some great ideas have been generated this morning.’ – Teacher, The Minster School, York

‘We all really enjoyed the day very much and the children enjoyed meeting a ‘real life author’ and in particular the singing aspect with the older ones.’ –  Gail Brown, Head teacher, Crayke Primary, N Yorks

“The visit provided children with both motivation and ideas for writing. Thanks for a brilliant day.’ – Teacher, Pattishall School, Northants

“The children were inspired by your visit – I think it added another dimension and made the writing process very real for our children.” –   Liz Hopper, Oakdene Primary School, Stockton on Tees

” The children got a lot from their morning with you. Once again it was a huge success. I am delighted.” – Claire Williams, Lumley Junior School, Durham

“Thank you for your very professional input to our day. A great end to book week! The children were very positive in their comments.” – Andrew Spencer, Deputy Head, Portobello Primary School, Durham

“Thank you for coming to our school and talking to our class. You have really inspired me to start writing books.” – Year 8 Pupil, Rydale Secondary School, N Yorks

My Wicked Stepmother:
‘Karen knows how children think and talk, and in Louise, her 14-year-old heroine, she has created an authentic teenage girl: obsessed with hair, boys and her diary, occasionally stroppy, and desperately insecure.’ –  Stephen Lewis, York Press

‘An enchanting tale which opens up the fantasy genre to a group of children who may not have felt inclined to read a book about fairies, but find themselves following a very believable heroine into a most unusual adventure.’ – Andrew Spencer, Deputy head teacher
Children’s reviews:
‘My Wicked Stepmother is awesome, I couldn’t put it down. I can’t wait to see what else you will write!!’ – Annie, 

‘I read Fairy Rescuers with my mum and then we got this one. I love it when Lucy and Ellie have to rescue Gabriella but Nikki gets into Elysia too and joins Grizzle. I like Lucan and I hope he gets married to Gabriella one day.’  – Lucy 

‘This book [My Wicked Stepmother] is awesome I read it in one hour because I couldn’t put the book down. You are really talented Karen. Lou was a total surprise I thought she was going to be a weak character but she really fought for what was right. I loved every word of it and you really inspired me! Thank you.’ – Charlotte

‘Every time I read it I get caught into it. [Fairy Rescuers] It’s a amazing book. Can u write some more books like this? Also it’s the best book I ever read.’ – Kayleigh

To Make a Booking

To make an enquiry about Karen Langtree, or any of the other authors, poets & illustrators listed on this website, please phone Trevor Wilson on +44 (0) 1535 656015, or email him at trevor@caboodlebooks.co.uk