April 04, 2022: Celebrate storytelling through the art of drag! Drag Queen Story Hour is opening hearts and minds with beautiful stories & fabulous storytellers.

Drag Queen Story Hour (DQSH) was created by Michelle Tea and RADAR Productions, under the leadership of Juli Delgado Lopera and Virgie Tovar, in San Francisco, as well as through the guidance of queens like Ona and Lil Miss Hot Mess. DQSH started out as drag queens reading stories to children in libraries, schools, and bookstores and grew into a global phenomenon! DQSH offers literary and creative programming for kids and teens of all ages led by drag queens, kings, and creatures all over the world. DQSH captures the imagination and play of the gender fluidity of childhood and gives kids glamorous, positive, and unabashedly queer role models. In spaces like this, kids are able to see people who defy rigid gender restrictions and imagine a world where people can present as they wish.

Drag Queen Story Hour celebrates reading through the glamorous art of drag. Their global network creates diverse, accessible, and cultural inclusive family programming where kids can express their authentic selves and become bright lights of change in their communities. Watch below “Tall Tales with True Queens” a short film that offers a glimpse into this inclusive project and the way it is reshaping culture. The short film shows how Drag Queen Story Hour has become a fresh addition to children’s learning in a growing number of libraries and schools. Watch how young children embrace the sequins, bright colors and learn to celebrate a spectrum of identity.

Drag Queen Story Hour is committed to creating diverse, accessible, and safe spaces. Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, they started doing livestream experiences to continue the story hour magic and taking into account public health measures, and to consider the needs of the most at-risk community members. Last year, DQSH hosted Native American Heritage Story Hour with Indigenous Drag Storytellers: Lady Shug, Tatianna Matthews and Landa Lakes! Lady Shug read the fabulous story Fry Bread! During these virtual events, DQST has highlighted the importance of amplifying BIPOC voices and have featured several anti-racist and Indigenous stories with the message: Let’s decolonize our bookshelves!

Through storytelling and creativity, Drag Queen Story Hour teaches children about gender diversity and all forms of difference to build empathy and give kids the confidence to express themselves however they feel comfortable. Their website features an extensive amount of fabulous digital resources to help accomplish this aim. As an organization that promotes social justice through cultural literacy, DQSH is committed to anti-racism and uplifting Black queer and trans voices! They stand in solidarity with the urgency work of the Movement for Black Lives, and are deeply committed to suing the tolls of storytelling and the art of drag to support childcare in becoming anti-racist leaders and build a more just world. Drag Queen Story Hour provides a range of fun and fabulous anti-racist educational resources for children and teens virtually. From creating art activities to reading lists, explore the DQSH website to learn more. 

So now, do you ever wish school had a little more … sparkle? SOGI UBC’s Transformative Education Speaker Series hosted a special event on the queer art of drag and the sparkly possibilities it offers as a form of public pedagogy. This event featured a lively panel discussion with Lil Miss Hot Mess (a Drag Queen Story Hour founding queen), Maiden China (a local Vancouver drag artist known for disrupting identity expectations) and Grace Towers (a San Fransisco artist and educator), facilitated by UBC’s own Dr. Harper B. Keenan, the Robert Quartermain Professor of Gender & Sexuality Research in Education. Don’t miss out and watch the video below – is fabulous!

Storytelling with Drag Queens is Canada’s premiere Drag Storytime! They had their first event in May 2017 at the historic Cafe Deux Soleils on Commercial Drive and have been doing virtual and in-person events ever since. The Storytelling with Drag Queens Foundation’s mandate is to promote diversity and inclusion in literacy for children, teens and adults. It consists of a diverse group of LGTBQ2S BIPOC drag performers and their allies that read stories, participate in sing-a-longs and perform for libraries, schools and other community organizations. The group also represents the drag community and answers questions from the audience about their performances and/or about their gender identities and gender fluidity. The Foundation seeks to provide a diverse set of queer role models in a fun and inclusive environment that promotes reading and comprehension through queer and inclusive literature – book a drag for your classroom with them!