Young Kids Writers Contest

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Photo courtesy of Lennart Tange via Flickr

We have featured discussions about the importance of books and storytelling for development of young children in several articles. Our children’s Book Reviews aim to help parents understand the need of books for their children, but also to inspire them to encourage their child’s imagination. Once child learns to write, his early experience and passion for books and storytelling provides him with a great foundation to write his own stories, real or fictional.

Writing contests for kids, whether on a local, national or international level, provide a platform and inspiration for young children to share their own writing and learn from others.

The PBS KIDS Writers Contest was designed to promote the advancement of children’s reading skills through hands-on, active learning. The contest encourages children in grades K-3 in communities across the U.S. to celebrate the power of creating stories and illustrations by submitting their own original pieces. It continues the great tradition and annual success of the 15-year national Reading Rainbow Young Writers and Illustrators Contest.

The Contest opened on January 1, 2014 and will end with the announcement of national winners on or about July 1, 2014.

If you’d like to register your child for this contest, contact your local PBS station for exact local Contest dates.

Download the Prizes and Rules PDF
Descargar el PDF Premios y Reglas

Eligibility & Entry Guidelines

  • Entrants must be in kindergarten, first, second or third grade;
  • Only one entry per person will be accepted; all subsequent entries will be disqualified;
  • Only single author stories qualify (no co-authored stories);
  • Stories can be fact or fiction, and prose or poetry;
  • Children of employees of PBS, PBS stations or their affiliates, sales representatives, subsidiaries or parent companies, advertising/sales promotion agencies, and judges are not eligible;
  • An entrant must be a legal resident of the fifty (50) United States and D.C. (excluding Puerto Rico, USVI and American Samoa).

Word Count

  • Kindergarten and first grade stories must have a minimum of 50 words and a maximum of 200 words;
  • Second and third grade stories must have a minimum of 100 words and a maximum of 350 words;
  • The word count includes “a,” “an,” and “the,” but not the words on non-story pages such as the title page or those that enhance the illustrations;
  • Text must be printed or written legibly or typed;
  • Children who cannot write may dictate their story to be printed, written legibly or typed;
  • Text may be integrated into the illustration pages or on separate pages;
  • Non-English text must be translated on the same page and the translated text (English text) must adhere to word count.
  • Invented spelling is accepted.

Format & Illustrations

  • Stories must have at least 5 original, clear and colorful illustrations;
  • Original art can include drawings, collages, and 3-D created by the author or photographs taken by the author;
  • Stories submitted by mail must be created on one side of the paper and numbered on the back of each page.

Click here for the Official Entry Form

Best of luck to all talented young writers. We’ll publish winners and their stories once they are announced.

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