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Parent Resources

Helping Your Child Learn to Write: http://www.nwp.org/cs/public/print/doc/resources/help_write.csp

Resources on How to Support Children’s Writing: http://www.nwp.org/cs/public/print/doc/resources/other_resources.csp

Pdf Booklet: Ten Ideas that Get Kids Writing

A blog advocating for authentic writing instruction: http://writerswhocare.wordpress.com

IMG_1959 copyOpportunities to Publish: Youth Writers


An Oakland non-profit run by Oakland Unified Teachers. $25 gift cards awarded each month for essays, short-stories and poetry. Published and awarded writing for 6th – 12th graders.

 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards

The nation’s longest-running and most prestigious recognition program for creative teenagers in grades 7 to 12. In 2018, students submitted nearly 350,000 works of visual art and writing to the Scholastic Awards; more than 90,000 works were recognized at the regional level and celebrated in local exhibitions and ceremonies. The top art and writing at the regional level were moved onto the national stage, where more than 2,800 students earned National Medals. National Medalists and their educators were celebrated at the National Ceremony at Carnegie Hall in New York City.

Categories include: Critical EssayDramatic ScriptFlash FictionHumorJournalismNovel WritingPersonal Essay & MemoirPoetryScience Fiction & FantasyShort StoryWriting Portfolio (graduating seniors only)Architecture & Industrial DesignCeramics & GlassComic ArtDesignDigital ArtDrawing & IllustrationEditorial CartoonFashionFilm & AnimationJewelryMixed MediaPaintingPhotographyPrintmakingSculptureVideo Game DesignArt Portfolio (graduating seniors only) and Future New.

★ The Adroit Journal

The journal has its eyes focused ahead, seeking to showcase what its global staff of emerging writers sees as the future of poetry, prose and art. We’re looking for work that’s bizarre, authentic, subtle, outrageous, indefinable, raw, paradoxical. We’ve got our eyes on the horizon.

★ Amazing Kids Magazine

The online publication is known for featuring quality, creative, thoughtful and often thought-provoking written and artistic work written and edited by children and teenagers. Accepts writing, art, photography or videography from young people who are 5 to 18 years old.

★ The Apprentice Writer

The best writing and illustrations from entries we receive each year from secondary schools throughout the United States and abroad. Every September we send copies printed by The Patriot News in Mechanicsburg, Pa., to approximately 3,000 schools. Susquehanna University and the Writers Institute invite high school students to submit fiction, memoir, personal essay, photography and/or poetry for the 37th volume of The Apprentice Writer, which will be published during the fall of 2019.

★ The Daphne Review

Publishes the work of high-school-age writers and artists from around the globe. All forms of original writing and art are accepted as submissions for our biannual journal.

★ elementia

elementia is a literary arts magazine published to represent and uplift young adults. We accept original poetry, fiction, nonfiction, graphic stories, photography and illustrations.

★ The Maze

An international teen anthology of poetry and art. In print for 20 years, we accept submissions from teenagers from around the world. Each year we publish the best of all entries received.

★ The NAACP’s Afro-Academic, Cultural, Technological and Scientific Olympics (ACT-SO)

A yearlong achievement program designed to recruit, stimulate, and encourage high academic and cultural achievement among African-American high school students.

ACT-SO includes 32 competitions in STEM, humanities, business, and performing, visual and culinary arts. Almost 300,000 young people have participated from the program since its inception.

★ National Young Arts Competition

The National YoungArts Foundation (YoungArts) was established in 1981 to identify and nurture the most accomplished young artists in the visual, literary, design and performing arts, and assist them at critical junctures in their educational and professional development. YoungArts’ signature program is an annual application-based award for emerging artists ages 15 to 18 or in grades 10 to 12 from across the United States in categories that include cinematic arts; classical music; dance; design arts; jazz; photography; theater; visual arts; voice; and writing.

★ Parallax Literary Magazine

Parallax Literary Magazine has been published by the Creative Writing department of Idyllwild Arts Academy since 1997. Idyllwild Arts Academy is a college preparatory boarding high school dedicated to the passion of young artists. Created, designed, and run by students, Parallax has always championed the high school writer by publishing the best of Idyllwild students’ creative writing and visual art. In 2011 Parallax expanded by adding an online component, which accepts submissions from high school students worldwide. The website also showcases student book reviews and writer interviews for the first time.

★ River of Words: Youth Art and Poetry Inspired by the Natural World

Our free, annual, international youth poetry and art contest — the largest in the world — inspires children ages 5 to 19 to translate their observations into creative expression.

★ Sandpiper

Sandpiper is a journal of literature and art devoted to uplifting the voices of those emerging and underrepresented in the literary scene, including but not limited to those of class, race, ability, gender, sexual orientation, and intersectional identity. However, all submissions are welcome. Sandpiper accepts poetry, prose, art, and photography.

★ Skipping Stones

We are a nonprofit magazine for youth that encourages communication, cooperation, creativity and celebration of cultural and environmental richness. It provides a playful forum for sharing ideas and experiences among youth from different countries and cultures. We are an ad-free, ecologically-aware, literary magazine printed on recycled paper with soy ink. Accepts many kinds of writing, including essays, stories, letters to the editor, riddles and proverbs, as well as drawings, paintings and photos.

★ Teen Ink

A national teen magazine, book series, and website devoted entirely to teenage writing, art, photos, and forums. For over 25 years, Teen Ink has offered teenagers the opportunity to publish their creative work and opinions on issues that affect their lives — everything from love and family to school, current events, and self-esteem. We have no staff writers or artists; we depend completely on submissions from teenagers around the world for our content. Teen Ink has the largest distribution of any publication of its kind.

Across Genres

★ The Adroit Prizes for Poetry and Prose

The Adroit Prizes are awarded annually to two students of secondary or undergraduate status. We’re fortunate to receive exceptional work from emerging writers in high school and college, and the best of the best will be recognized by the Adroit Prizes.

★ Bennington College Young Writer Awards

Bennington launched the Young Writers Awards to promote excellence in writing at the high school level. Our goal with this competition is to recognize outstanding writing achievement by high school students. Each year, students in the 10th, 11th and 12th grades are invited to enter poetry, fiction or nonfiction.

★ Canvas Literary Journal

Canvas Teen Literary Journal is a quarterly journal with seasonal issues in October, January, April and July. We publish the work of teen writers 13 to 18 years old, read and rated by a board of teen editors. Our contributors and editors are from all over the English-speaking world and represent some of the best teen writing out there, in our humble opinion.

★ Ember

Ember is a semiannual journal of poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction for all age groups. Submissions for and by readers aged 10 to 18 are strongly encouraged.

★ Hanging Loose Press

Fiction and poetry for a general audience, but has a regular section devoted to writing by talented high school writers.

★ Hypernova Lit

Hypernova Lit is an online journal dedicated to publishing the writing and visual art of teenagers. We seek to cast light on the brilliant work produced by teenagers. We are deeply committed to honesty and fearlessness in the work we publish, with a particular emphasis on teenagers telling their own difficult truths. Out of respect for our writers and artists, we do not censor for language or content.

★ NCTE Achievement Awards in Writing

To encourage high school juniors to write and to publicly recognize the best student writers.

★ The Norman Mailer High School Writing Award

Since 2009, the Norman Mailer Center has collaborated with the National Council of Teachers of English to present the Mailer Student and Teacher Writing Awards. Awards are given for fiction, nonfiction writing, and poetry. National winners in each category receive a cash prize presented at an award ceremony. Recognition is also extended to writers whose work earns top scores in early evaluation rounds.

★ Polyphony Lit

A student-run, international literary magazine for high school writers and editors, which invites submissions of poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction from high school students worldwide. Our student editors provide feedback to all submissions, including the ones we do not accept for publication.

★ Rider University Annual High School Writing Contest

Accepts essays, fiction and poetry. All finalists will receive a Certificate of Honorable Mention. All winners will be considered for publication in Venture, Rider’s literary magazine.

★ Stone Soup Secret Kids Book-Writing Contest

A competition inviting young people to write children’s books, early-reader books, chapter books, middle-grade fiction or young-adult fiction. Winners will receive a book publishing deal, $1,000 prize money and a subscription to Stone Soup Magazine.

★ Write the World Competitions

We’re a community of young writers (ages 13 to 18), hailing from over 120 countries. Join our global platform, and explore our ever-changing library of prompts as you establish a regular writing practice and expand your repertoire of styles, all while building your portfolio of polished work. Enter competitions for the chance to receive feedback from authors, writing teachers, and other experts in the field.

Academic Research

★ The Concord Review

The Concord Review, Inc., was founded in March 1987 to recognize and to publish exemplary history essays by high school students in the English-speaking world. With the Fall Issue (#118), 1,196 research papers (average 7,500 words, with endnotes and bibliography) have been published from authors in 45 states and 40 other countries. The Concord Review remains the only quarterly journal in the world to publish the academic history papers of secondary students.

★ National History Day

Each year more than half a million students participate in the National History Day Contest. Students choose a historical topic related to the annual theme, and then conduct primary and secondary research. You will look through libraries, archives and museums, conduct oral history interviews, and visit historic sites. After you have analyzed and interpreted your sources, and have drawn a conclusion about the significance of your topic, you will then be able to present your work in one of five ways: as a paper, an exhibit, a performance, a documentary, or a website.

Current Events and Culture

★ INKspire

INKspire is a place for youth to share their stories and offer perspectives on relevant, contemporary issues. Young people can learn from one another, share their stories, thoughts and ideas while connecting with other youth around the world.

★ Young Post

Young Post is a teen print news and English-teaching product that is part of the South China Morning Post. While we are a Hong Kong product, we do welcome students from around the world in our pages and on our site. We have a Junior Reporters club, in which students learn reporting skills, and pitch and contribute stories. We have local members who have moved overseas for senior school or university who still contribute, but it would be wonderful to hear from more students interested in sharing stories that matter to them with their Asian peers.

★ Youth Voices Live

We are a site for conversations. We invite youth of all ages to voice their thoughts about their passions, to explain things they understand well, to wonder about things they have just begun to understand, and to share discussion posts with other young people using as many different genres and media as they can imagine!


 American Foreign Service Association National High School Essay Contest

Why Diplomacy and Peacebuilding Matter: In a 1,000- to 1,250-word essay, identify two cases — one you deem successful and one you deem unsuccessful — where the U.S. pursued an integrated approach to build peace in a conflict-affected country.

 Goi Peace Foundation International Essay Contest for Young People

Guidelines for the 2019 International Essay Contest for Young People will be announced at the end of January 2019.

★ Profile in Courage Essay Contest

Describe and analyze an act of political courage by a US elected official who served during or after 1917.

★ Represent Magazine

A publication by and for youth in foster care, the stories in Represent give inspiration and information, while offering staff insight into those teenagers’ struggles.

★ We the Students Essay Contest

What are the essential qualities of a citizen in your community in 21st-century America? We encourage you to bring emotion, creativity, specific examples (including current events), and well-researched facts into what you write. A good essay will demonstrate how citizenship is not an abstract idea, but is, in fact, action inspired by constitutional principles. We can’t wait to see what citizenship looks like in your community!


 Creating Iris

New fiction for teenagers (roughly, ages 14 to 17) with an L.G.B.T.Q.A.I. slant.

★ NaNoWriMo Young Writer’s Program

National Novel Writing Month is a fun, empowering approach to creative writing. The challenge: draft an entire novel in just one month. For 30 wild, exciting, surprising days, you get to lock away your inner editor, let your imagination take over, and just create! Our Young Writers Program supports under-18 writers and K-12 educators as they participate in our flagship event each November, and take part in smaller writing challenges year-round.

★ One Teen Story

An award-winning quarterly literary magazine that features the work of today’s best teen writers (ages 13-19).

★ Ringling College Storytellers of Tomorrow Creative Writing Contest

We’re inviting all high-school age students to submit unpublished, original English-language stories of up to 2,000 words in length for the 4th Annual “Storytellers of Tomorrow” Contest. The criteria for earning prizes in this contest is simply overall quality, meaning that well-edited, engaging, and evocative stories have the best chance of winning over the judges.


 Columbia Scholastic Press Association Gold Circle Awards

These awards are offered to recognize superior work by student journalists usually as individuals but sometimes as an entire staff working with either print or online media.

★ National Scholastic Press Association Individual Awards

Each year, the National Scholastic Press Association presents the Individual Awards, honoring the best individuals in scholastic journalism. There are six categories. Entries are judged by teams of professionals with experience and expertise in the area of each particular contest. The contests are open to any student on staff of an N.S.P.A. member publication.

★ Quill & Scroll Awards

We encourage, support and recognize individual student initiative and achievement in scholastic journalism, regardless the medium.


★ Dear Poet Project

A multimedia education project that invited young people in grades 5 through 12 to write letters in response to poems written and read by some of the award-winning poets who serve on the Academy of American Poets Board of Chancellors.

★ Letters About Literature

Letters About Literature is a reading and writing contest for students in grades 4 to 12. Students are asked to read a fiction or nonfiction book, book series, short story, poem, essay, or speech (excluding song lyrics) and write to the author (living or dead) about how the book affected them personally.

★ New York Times Opinion Section Letter to the Editor Contest

A letter-writing competition for high school students that runs from March 31, 2019 to April 8, 2019. We invite you to submit a letter to the editor in response to a Times news article, editorial, column or Op-Ed in the last few days. We will publish a selection of our favorites.

★ YCteen Writing Contest

YCteen is written by a staff of teen writers who work in our New York City newsroom. But writing is a form of conversation, and we want you to join in. We invite you to submit letter to the writer, responding to their story. This is an opportunity to express your opinion or present your own point of view on a story you’ve read.


★ Princeton University Ten-Minute Play Contest

Eligibility for this annual playwriting contest is limited to students in the 11th grade in the U.S. (or international equivalent of the 11th grade).

★ VSA Playwright Discovery Program Competition

Young writers with disabilities and collaborative groups that include students with disabilities, in the U.S. grades 6-12 (or equivalents) or ages 11-18 for non-U.S. students, are invited to explore the disability experience through the art of writing for performance — in the form of plays, screenplays, or music theater. Writers are encouraged to craft short (10 minute) works from their own experiences and observations in the style of realism, through the creation of fictional characters and settings, or writing metaphorically or abstractly about the disability experience.

★ Writopia Lab’s 10th AnnualWorldwide Plays Festival

An annual Off-Broadway festival of one-act plays written by playwrights ages 6 to 18 and produced, designed, directed, and acted by New York theater professionals.

★ Young Playwrights Festival

The Young Playwrights Festival takes place each spring at the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center. If your play is selected for the festival, you will work with a creative team composed of National Theater Institute alumni — a director, dramaturg, designer, and actors to develop and stage your script.

★ Youth Plays New Voices One-Act Competition

We welcome submissions of challenging, entertaining plays and musicals that are appropriate for teen and younger actors and/or audiences.


★ Nancy Thorp Poetry Contest

Sponsored by Hollins University, the Nancy Thorp Poetry Contest provides scholarships, prizes, and recognition for the best poems submitted by high-school-aged women.

 The Patricia Grodd Poetry Prize for Young Writers

Recognizes outstanding young poets and is open to high school sophomores and juniors throughout the world. The contest winner receives a full scholarship to the Kenyon Review Young Writers workshop.

★ Poetry Matters Project Lit Prize 2019

Middle and high school students may submit. All prize-winning poems will be published in the Poetry Diversified 2020 Anthology and on the Poetry Matters Project website. A video of the winner reading his or her poem will be posted on the Poetry Matters Project website via Youtube. An audio version will be available via SoundCloud.

★ Princeton University High School Poetry Prize

The Leonard L. Milberg ’53 High School Poetry Prize recognizes outstanding work by student writers in the 11th grade in the U.S. or abroad.

Science Writing

★ curiousSCIENCEwriters

An innovative, extracurricular program that trains creative high school communicators to bring complex science to the general public through the power of story. Science and technology are advancing exponentially, yet fewer than 7 percent of American adults are scientifically literate. With growing medical, environmental and social issues facing us all, it is essential that the next generation of communicators be prepared to help people make sense of emerging science that affects their personal health and well-being, as well as that of the world around them.

★ EngineerGirl Writing Contest

Every year, the EngineerGirl website sponsors a contest dealing with engineering and its impact on our world. The topic and detailed instructions for the contest are posted in the fall with a deadline for submissions early the following year. Winners are announced in the spring.


THINK is an annual science research and innovation competition for high school students. Rather than requiring students to have completed a research project before applying, THINK instead caters to students who have done extensive research on the background of a potential research project and are looking for additional guidance in the early stages of their project. The program is organized by a group of undergraduates at MIT.