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Essay Writing Competitions Online For Kids

The following contests and magazines are open to submissions from students. Please send in any other contests that you know about and I’ll add them to the list. Also, let me know if any contests have been discontinued.


WETA is holding a write-your-own book contest for students in K-3. The deadline is April 17. See rules for entering.

Time for Kids is holding a poetry contest. Deadline January 30. You must be a subscriber to get info.

The Gaithersburg Book Festival is holding a short story contest for students in grades 9-12 living in the Washington metropolitan area. Short stories must be no longer than 1,000 words and must begin with one of three lines provided on the contest website.

Washington Post KidsPost Annual Poetry Contest occurs every April in honor of National Poetry Month. See their website for rules on how to enter.

Scholastic Art and Writing Awards are for students in grades 7-12. Awards in many categories include: film, design, short story, poetry, and more.

Scholastic Bookfairs Kids are Authors Contest is an annual competition open to students in Grades K–8 in the United States and U.S. international schools and is designed to encourage students to use their reading, writing, and artistic skills.

Letters About Literature (LAL) is a state and national writing contest sponsored by the Maryland Humanities Arts Council that encourages young readers in grades 4 to 12 to respond to an author through a letter expressing how that author and book changed their worldview and themselves.

American Pet Products Association is sponsoring a poetry contest about animals called Pets Add Life for grades 3-8.

NASA is planning a new contest, The Nasa Careers Poetry Contest. Find out more at: http://spaceflightsystems.grc.nasa.gov/girlscouts/gsusa_poetry.html

SOMIRAC (State of Maryland International Reading Association Council) sponsors a Young Authors’ Contest for Maryland students in Grades 2-12 at the local council and state levels. All entries must be original work and include a completed “Submission Form” signed by the student author and sponsoring teacher. To find out more, please see your school’s reading specialist or contact SOMIRAC.

Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County (MD) Fran Abrams Creative Writing Award for high school seniors.

MONTGOMERY COUNTY (MD) STUDENTS HAVE OPPORTUNITY TO BE PUBLISHED with BETHESDA YOUTH WRITING CONTEST. The contest is open to students in grades K-8 who live or attend school in Montgomery County. Students can enter the contest either as individuals or through their teacher, if the whole class would like to participate. For an entry form and more information, please visit www.bethesda.org or call 301-215-6660.


Creative Kids magazine is the nation’s largest magazine by and for kids. The magazine bursts with games, stories, and opinions all by and for kids ages 8–14.

New Moon Girls Magazine focuses on girls, women, or female issues. New Moon Girls was created by girls and women for girls who want their voices heard and their dreams taken seriously. It is edited by and for girls ages 8 and up. New Moon Girls takes girls very seriously; the publication is structured to give girls real power. The final product is a collaboration of girls and adults. An editorial board of girls aged 8-14 makes final decisions on content for the magazine and website.

Stone Soup is made up of stories, poems, book reviews, and art by young people through age 13.

Teensite, a website for teens through Montgomery County (MD) Public Library, invites Montgomery County, MD, students to submit original writing to their ongoing site. They also hold an annual contest: Understanding Diversity through Creative Writing. Contact your branch librarian to find out more.

Teen ‘Zine, hosted by Howard County (MD) Public Library system, invites submissions from Howard County teens. The HC library also offers an annual Sherlock Holmes essay contest.

Filed Under: Resources, Your IdeasTagged With: writing contest, writing contests

Learning how to write is an important skill that kids need to learn when they are young. Being able to compose well-crafted stories, essays, and papers will serve them well later in life. Of course, most kids learn to write in school, but there are many other writing opportunities out there for talented kids.

For example, by entering writing contests for kids, children of all ages can challenge themselves to achieve more. There are many different contests out there, so finding one that appeals should not be too hard. Helping your child find a contest to enter can actually be a lot of fun.

Many newspapers sponsor writing contests for kids of all ages. Keep an eye out for information about these contests in your local paper. You can also contact the paper directly to ask them whether they run contests during the year. If they say that they do not, suggest that they start doing so. You might get a positive reaction!

Schools also frequently run contests of various sorts. For example, there might be a contest for the best poem written on a certain theme, or for an essay about a particular holiday. Encourage your child to enter these contests so that they can hone their writing skills.

Many magazines also hold writing contests for young people. These contests often involve writing an essay on a particular theme. Magazines that publish fiction may also hold contests where kids can submit their short stories. The winners often get to see their stories published in the pages of the magazine, which can be very exciting for kids.

There are also many online writing competitions for kids. A quick search online will lead you to information about many such contests. Once you have found some, let your child look at them to see which ones are most appealing.

Entering a writing contest is a great way for your child to improve his or her writing skills. The excitement of winning a prize can really make your child feel better about these skills. Be sure to give your child any assistance that he or she needs.

Writing clear and understandable prose is an important skill to develop, especially in today’s online world. Entering writing contests for kids is an excellent way for children to improve these skills. They also can have the excitement of winning prizes and seeing their work in print.

Writing Contests for Kids
PBS Kids Writers Contest

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