Speaker Series Registration


Please Note: Speaker Series programming will be held virtually, via Zoom, for part of the 2021-2022 year.

This program is free to attend, and all guests are welcome. Registration is required. After registering you will receive a confirmation email, with information about how to access the meeting.

By registering to participate in a Guild-sponsored event, members and guests consent to abide by the Children's Book Guild of Washington, DC, Code of Conduct/Anti-Harassment Policy. Read the Code here.

Christina Soontornvat

November 18, 2021
1 p.m.

Register below.


Newbery Honors Award-Winning Author Christina Soontornvat

At 1 p.m. on Thursday, November 18, the Children's Book Guild's Zoom Speaker Series will feature a conversation with award-winning author Christina Soontornvat. Christina will share thoughts on her career, which includes writing both fiction and nonfiction. She will also talk about her upcoming projects.


In 2019, Christina won two Newbery Honors for the middle grade fantasy book A Wish in the Dark and her non-fiction book, All Thirteen: the Incredible Cave Rescue of the Thai Boys’ Soccer Team. The latter also received a Siebert Honor and a Horn Book honor. She has written more than a dozen books for children. Her picture books include The Ramble Shamble Children (illustrated by Caldecott Honoree Lauren Castillo) and Simon at the Art Museum (illustrated by Christine Davenier). She is the author of the beloved Diary of an Ice Princess chapter book series.

She grew up behind the counter of her parents’ Thai restaurant in a small Texas town and is proud of both her Thai and her Texan roots. She makes regular trips to both Weatherford and Bangkok to see her beloved family members (and eat lots and lots of Thai food!). In addition to being an author, Christina holds a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering and a master’s degree in Science Education. She spent a decade working in the science museum field, where she designed programs and exhibits to get kids excited about science. She is passionate about STEM (science, technology engineering, and math) and loves learning. She lives in Austin, Texas with her husband, two young children and one old cat. You can read more about Christine here.

Each month the Children’s Book Guild selects a community organization for members to support through donations. Your generous contributions make a difference - thank you!

For November, the Guild's Program Committee has selected the 1619 Freedom School.


The 1619 Freedom School is a five-days-a-week, after school program dedicated to delivering intensive literacy instruction and a culturally responsive curriculum to bridge the academic opportunity gap among low-income public school students in Waterloo, Iowa.


“1619”, the year the first enslaved Africans were sold into the English colonies that in 1776 would form the United States, marks the birth of Black America. “Freedom School” evokes the legacy of the free, community schools launched by the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) during the Civil Rights Movement, in order to educate Black youth on their history and empower them to fight their oppression with the goal of achieving social, political and economic equality in the United States. 

The Freedom School motto, “Liberation Through Literacy,” resides within the Black tradition of belief that "education is the key to freedom, and seeks to remind our children and our community that they come from a heritage of Black people who so believed in the power of literacy  that they risked their lives for literacy during slavery, when it was illegal for Black Americans to learn to read and write."


The 1619 Freedom School partnered with educators from Georgetown University and the University of Missouri to design a literacy curriculum built around Black history. This curriculum will be available as an open sourced, free resource for communities across the country. 


More information here.


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The Guild is supporting the 1619 Freedom School for its November meeting. To learn more, check out their website here. If you would like to add a donation from Members and Friends of the Children’s Book Guild, please donate here*:

* Paypal will deduct a processing fee of 2.9% + 30 cents from your donation.