Carey Rigby-Wilcox

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Carey Rigby-Wilcox

Author, Illustrator, Storyteller
Saskatoon, SK

Moonbeam Children’s Award in the Reading/Literacy category! (Winner, 2014)

Saskatchewan Book Awards Book of the Year (Short-listed, 2008)

Saskatchewan Council of the Federation of Literacy Award (2006)

Canada Post Literacy Award for Achievement in Learning (2001)

Saskatchewan Literacy Award of Merit (1999)

Nominated for a YWCA Women of Distinction Award

Moonbeam Children’s Award in the Reading/Literacy category! (Winner, 2016)




Carey Rigby-Wilcox (See a Book Take a Look)


Carey Rigby-Wilcox is a committed literacy learner, activist, volunteer, business owner, illustrator, and author who is deeply dedicated to promoting literacy at the local, provincial, and national levels. Carey struggled with reading and writing throughout her school years. After receiving her high school diploma; with a very low literacy level, Carey came to a crossroads. She knew she needed to improve her literacy level, not only for herself, but also for her unborn child.

Carey speaks openly with warmth and humility about her own personal literacy journey, giving validation and inspiration to those who have been touched by literacy issues. Carey demonstrates how her own learning journey with a tutor helped her &;dreams come true&;.  Her story of encouragement and compassion will motivate the audience to become lifelong learners.  Carey is committed to spreading the word about the importance of literacy and the barriers an adult learner faces every day. Understanding how literacy impacts one’s life becomes the catalyst to understanding how to provide support and encouragement to an adult learner. 

Carey travels across Canada sharing the importance of learning to read, and how exciting it is to be an award-winning author and illustrator. Carey has presented numerous keynote presentations and speeches at various events. Her passion as an advocate for literacy has taken her to provincial and federal governments and even to Parliament. 

TestimonialSaskatchewan Literacy Commissioner Dr. Margaret Lipp called her “an excellent role model for literacy, who has shared her experience both as a literacy learner and as a literacy volunteer,” while the Minster of Learning Deb Higgins observed that “Carey Rigby-Wilcox’s contribution will help many individuals participate more fully in the social, cultural, and economic life of our province.” Former Premier Calvert said, “Her contribution to raising the awareness of literacy is Saskatchewan is helping the province to build a social legacy that will enhance the quality of life in our communities for generations to come."


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Introduction to Literacy!! Make Reading Fun!!!

Interactive Reading: (Grades K to 4)

The rich illustrations from Carey’s books; “Ten Little Ladybugs in my Jar,” “A Song to Sing” engage children in the act of reading.  Carey uses a variety of interactive activities to make reading fun. Children come away with several tools they can use in the classroom and share with families/parents.

Time: 45-60 minutes

Free Empowerment Package Provided.  Students will have book-related ideas to share with their families.

Ten Little Ladybugs in my Jar: Ten active little ladybugs live within the brightly illustrated pages of this sparkly picture book. Little readers will learn subtraction through this interactive storybook as one by one, the ladybugs escape the jar in which they spend their days. Ten Little Ladybugs in my Jar is a unique little book written and illustrated to build confidence in young readers. After reading it through once or twice, they will be sure to share it with others around them!

A Song to Sing: Kate loves to sing and by the end of this book she&;ll have you singing too!It’s a story about Kate, who loves to sing, and everywhere she goes people are telling her to stop singing. But her song is both contagious and inspiring! You’ll also enjoy the illustrations in this book which include some familiar references (including Singing with Sylvia - Click here to listen to songs by Sylvia). The book provides an opportunity for discussion with children about songs they like to sing, events in their day, and the things they dream about. Books are about more than the story itself, but about how we relate to the story and illustrations, and how they inspire us to be creative and share our own experiences with others.

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Recommended levels: Junior kindergarten, Senior kindergarten, Primary (1-3)

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Learn How an Empowering Book is Made!!

Interactive Reading: (Grade 4 to12):

In this interactive reading, award-winning author, Carey Rigby-Wilcox demonstrates the role of technology as she shares her self-taught techniques in writing, illustrating, self-publishing and marketing to bring her books from concept to finished product. Carey identifies both the challenges and successes she encountered to produce printed and electronic editions of her own books as she enlightens students in understanding what is involved in creating an empowering book using modern technology.

Time: 60-90 minutes

Free Empowerment Package Provided.  Students will gain an understanding of the steps involved in creating a book. 

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“Excellent presentation, loved the hands on artifacts and actually copies of your process that all the students could touch and feel!

Thank you so much for presenting your writer&;s life with us!!  And these are straight from the mouths of my Grade 5ers!”

Testimonials: Students from Farther Gorman School, Lloydminster, Saskatchewan January 28th 2015

  • “You are very smart and you taught how to write good book. “

  • “I liked her presentation because you taught us your tricks about how to write a story.”

  • “Your stories are excellent and perfect!”

  • “In showing us how you used rough copies, I learned that writing is a lot of work.”

  • “I learned that it is okay to make mistakes when you are writing because you still have to edit, edit, edit, and then pass it to someone else to edit, then edit, edit, edit and edit some more!!!!”

  • “I liked how you taught us a different upside down way to draw.”

  • “Your information makes us want to be small authors!!!”

Recommended levels: Junior (4-6), Intermediate (7-8), High school (9-12)

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The Importance of Literacy

Interactive Reading and Discussion (Grade 6 to12)

The shame experienced by those who struggle with literacy needs to be eliminated before personal success and learning can really take place! Through candidly sharing her personal literacy journey, Carey inspires those who struggle with literacy as she once did, to invest in themselves. The presentations fosters empathy and understanding. Carey understands that low self-esteem often accompanies low literacy and she encourages everyone to believe that they are worth educating themselves. Using personal examples, Carey demonstrates how the gift of literacy creates a ripple effect from person to family to community and beyond.

Time: 60-90 minutes

Free Empowerment Package Provided

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“Thank you for having the courage to share your story.  Dreams do come true. I hope you know how much you inspire us as teachers to ensure our kids are reading and not slipping through. Supportive parents like you make such a difference.” - Jolayne Rempel, Principal of Delisle Elementary School

"Carey Rigby-Wilcox has been inspiring our classroom of literacy students for years by sharing her books and her journey as an adult learner.  In her latest book, “My Dad Couldn’t Read”, Carey breaks the ice about literacy issues by telling the story of a dad who has trouble reading. Her accessible and engaging story helps remove the fear, shame, and stigma often surrounding those with low levels of literacy.  Thanks for starting the conversation, Carey! -Nicole Braun, Saskatoon Food Bank and Learning Centre"

"The award winning My Dad Couldn&;t Read is a powerful story that will pull on your heartstrings. The empowering message and the family bonds in this book will inspire you and your children. Rigby-Wilcox shows readers that with support and determination, anything is possible."- Kristine Scarrow,author of Throwaway Girl

“In one, simple and moving tale, author Carey Rigby-Wilcox reminds us that literacy is the true franchise of civilization, and that those without it are alone in ways that we cannot fathom, deafened to the chorus of human achievement that sings to us from books.” - Jefferson Smith, author of the Finding Tayna fantasy series.


Recommended levels: Junior (4-6), Intermediate (7-8), High school (9-12)