In the fourth grade, my story about a talking racehorse was selected from a pile of student entries.  This granted me access to the compelling world of Mr. Pola, volunteer writing teacher. He invited a few lucky students to marvel at the elegance of his favorite works and even regaled us with his own beautiful writing.  In this atmosphere, a writer was born in me. Though a variety of writing jobs grace my past, from college newspaper reporter to PR writer, I've found my writing home in teaching.  


Since July 2010, I've mentored close to 400 young writers. Collectively, they’ve produced powerful, imaginative poetry and prose, delighting themselves with their word power.  My classroom is a long way from the spare bungalow Mr. Pola turned into a world of possibility, but in KidWritersLA, I’ve carved out a sanctuary similar to the one created by my first muse.  


- Risa Gechtman


                           “Thanks for providing the

                  space where he could blossom a little.

              He has had such reluctance to putting ideas                            in writing. He felt safe and comfortable with

            you.”                    Michelle H.


                      “Yours is the only class he’s ever

                          wanted to be on time to...”  

                               Ron V.






             Risa Gechtman

is a California credentialed teacher since 1996.  She holds a Single Subject Credential in English Language Arts, a CLAD (cross-cultural language academic development) 

credential and is a graduate of UCLA's Writing Project, Literature Project When Teachers Write courses.  She is newly minted Educational Therapist, with an ET certification from UCR. 


Sucar was the supportive mascot of     all KidWriters. She derived great pleasure from listening to student  work, often achieving a zen-like state that resembled sleeping. 

Sucar had been a source of inspiration for dozens of KidWriters and the subject of many stories, but sadly passed away a few years back.  Yofie is the newest KWLA mascot, but she seems to be very intimidated by the talented young writers she encounters, and generally steers clear. Her adorable face is on the home page. 



KidWritersLA seeks to inspire a comfortable connection to the written word by engaging 

students in dynamic writing 

activities. Participants are encouraged to tap their imaginations and knowledge bases to produce original written works in a variety of genres. 

KidWritersLA students range

in age from 4 to 18.  Some

of our classes are advertised and others are coordinated

by interested parents.  

Please send inquiries to