TeachingBooks Virtual Book Tour

The TeachingBooks Virtual Book Tour is your opportunity to learn from and build personal connections with extraordinary book creators and their brand-new titles. Included in all Virtual Book Tour posts are original interviews with authors and illustrators, lesson plans, an activity designed for young people, and much more!

Welcome Miranda Paul

Miranda Paul on Right Now! Real Kids Speaking Up for Change

In this post, we feature author Miranda Paul, whose previous, acclaimed titles include One Plastic Bag: Isatou Ceesay and the Recycling Women of the Gambia. You can hear her speak about writing her new picture book, Right Now! Real Kids Speaking Up for Change, illustrated by Bea Jackson, and try her “invitation to imagine” activity. You’ll also find other resources to explore. Thanks for joining us, and let us know what you think in the comments below!


Miranda Paul and the cover of Right Now!

Right Now! Real Kids Speaking Up for Change

  • Written by Miranda Paul and illustrated by Bea Jackson
  • Published by Clarion Books, an imprint of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • Release date: September 7, 2021

This joyful, inspiring picture book introduces readers to 11 young people from around the world who didn’t wait until they were grown to speak up about things that matter to them, and they changed the world for the better. From short profiles of climate activist Greta Thunberg, anti-bullying advocate Jaylen Arnold, peace activist Bana Alabed and more, readers will learn about brave young people and their causes. An author’s note, suggested Actions to Make a Difference, and additional resources are also included, providing a roadmap for any kid who wants to make change and help others, too.

An interior image from Right Now, written by Miranda Paul and illustrated by Bea Jackson, showing young activist Jonas Corona, who "speaks up for those experiencing homelessness and hunger."
An interior image from Right Now, written by Miranda Paul and illustrated by Bea Jackson, showing young activist Zulaikaha Patel, who "speaks up for natural beauty and racial equality."

Explore Right Now! Real Kids Speaking Up for Change

Listen to Miranda Paul talking with TeachingBooks about creating Right Now! Real Kids Speaking Up for Change. You can click the player below or experience the recording on TeachingBooks, where you can read along as you listen, and also translate the text to another language.


Invitation to Imagine

TeachingBooks asks each author or illustrator on our Virtual Book Tour to share a writing prompt, a drawing exercise, or just an interesting question to spark curiosity and creativity. Enjoy the following activity contributed by Miranda Paul.

Imagination Activity with Miranda Paul

When I was younger, people always asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” And I didn’t have one answer. My answer changed. The truth is, I didn’t want to be just one thing. I wanted to DO lots of things! If you had no obstacles, what would you do right now? What do you hope to do in the future? Make a short list of awesome things you hope to do in the near future. 

Writing Prompt: Write a letter to yourself as though you’re in the middle of doing one of the amazing things from your list right now. What do you see and hear? More importantly, how do you feel? 

Drawing Prompt: Draw yourself doing everything on your list of awesome things you’d love to be doing right now!

Finish This Sentence . . . with Miranda Paul

As part of our Virtual Book Tour, TeachingBooks asks authors and illustrators to complete short sentence prompts. Enjoy Miranda Paul’s response.

“You may not know that I can . . .”

You may not know that I can sail, scuba dive, and imitate several animal sounds!

Miranda Paul in scuba diving gear with her husband and frequent collaborator, Baptiste Paul.
Miranda Paul in scuba diving gear with her husband and frequent collaborator, Baptiste Paul

“Where I work is…”

Where I work is mostly in my office, surrounded by foster animals, five rescue cats, and, in the summer, dozens of caterpillars and butterflies that I help raise during my writing breaks!

Miranda Paul with a monarch butterfly that she has raised.

Thank you!

To wrap up this Virtual Book Tour, we thank Miranda Paul for signing a book for all of us.

The title page of Right Now! signed by the author, Miranda Paul, with the message, "Your voice matteres!"

More Connections to Miranda Paul and Right Now! Real Kids Speaking Up for Change


Explore all of the titles featured in the TeachingBooks Virtual Book Tour: one link with author interviews, lesson plans, activities, and more!

All other text and images are courtesy of Miranda Paul, Bea Jackson, and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and may not be used without expressed written consent.

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