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Rules Getting Children & Students Started Jumpstarting the Writing & Illustrating Process Inventive Illustrations Frequently Asked Questions Contest Entry Checklist Entry Packet

Reading Rainbow's Annual Young Writers & Illustrators Contest


Every year, PBS 45 & 49 must eliminate entries from competition because students do not observe the rules of the contest. Double-check your work to make sure youve followed all of the contest rules by using our checklist.

Reading Rainbow?s 11th Annual Young Writers & Illustrators Contest is open to children in kindergarten, 1st, 2nd and 3rd grades. Each grade level will be judged separately. Children of employees of PBS 45 & 49, Reading Rainbow, GPN, Nebraska ETV Network, WNED-TV, RCN Entertainment, the Public Broadcasting Service and Public Broadcasting Stations are not eligible to win.

Entry Guidelines
You Must Follow These Guidelines to Qualify to Win Read Carefully!

Only one entry per person will be accepted and only single-author stories qualify. Stories can be fact or fiction, prose or poetry.

Story Text Requirements
  • Kindergarten and 1st-grade entries must contain a minimum of 50 words (including "a," "an" and "the"), a maximum of 200 words and no less than 5 original illustrations.

  • 2nd-grade and 3rd-grade entries must contain a minimum of 100 words (including "a," "an" and "the"), a maximum of 350 words and no less than 5 original illustrations.

  • Text must be printed legibly or typed.

  • Children who cannot write may dictate their story to an adult.

  • Text may be integrated into the illustration pages or on individual pages.

  • Non-English text must be translated on the same page and the translation text must adhere to the word count.

  • Invented spellings are accepted.

Format & Illustrations
  • The story must have at least 5 original, clear and colorful Illustrations. Computer-generated art, but not pre-produced clip art or photographs, is accepted.

  • Read this carefully: Entrants must present stories on one side of the paper only and must include a page number on the back of each page.

  • The entrant's story title, name, address and phone number must be legibly written or typed on an attached page (in addition to the entry form) and stapled to the front of the entry.

Entries must be postmarked by Tuesday, March 1, 2005.

Reading Rainbow and PBS 45 & 49 are not responsible for late, lost, stolen, misdirected, damaged, mutilated, incomplete or illegible entries or for postage-due mail.

Entry Form
Each entry must include the official Entry Form (page 5 of the Entry Packet PDF form), with the required signature of a parent (and sponsoring teacher, if relevant) confirming that the story and art are original works of the child, and granting permission to use the entry for promotional purposes.

Judging, Awards & Notification
Entries will be judged on originality, creative expression, storytelling and integration of text and illustrations. Local entry judging will take place at PBS 45 & 49, which will send grand prize winners on to the national contest.

Local judges recruited by PBS 45 & 49 will include staff members of the stations, local children's librarians and K-3 teachers. The national judges will include children's book authors, illustrators, publishers and educators as well as representatives from organizations such as the American Library Association, the National Council of Teachers of English, etc. Decisions of the judges are final.

Local Winners
PBS 45 & 49 will name a grand prize, second-place and third-place winner in each of the four grade levels. Local winners will be announced Saturday, March 19 at 11:30 am at Summit Mall in Akron as part of the PBS 45 & 49 Family Expo. PBS 45 & 49 will also announce winners on air on Monday, March 21 at 10:55 am & 11:25 am, immediately before and after the broadcast of Reading Rainbow. Winners will be notified by phone and mail as well. Each grand prize winner will receive a $50 gift certificate from Borders Books and Music. The grand prize winning entries will be forwarded to the national Reading Rainbow contest. Local second and third place winners in each category will receive one $25 gift certificate each from Borders Books and Music.

National Winners
PBS 45 & 49's grand prize submissions in each category will be entered into the national Reading Rainbow Young Writers & Illustrators competitions. Grand prize winners will be announced in June 2005.

Return of Entries
The contest adminstrators cannot return entries. Please be sure to make and save a copy of your story before you submit the original in the contest.

Rights Associated With This Contest
Winners grant to PBS 45 & 49 and Reading Rainbow the right to use their names and likenesses in advertising and promotion without furthur compensation or permission, except where prohibited by law. All national entries, and any copyrights therein, become the sole property of Reading Rainbow and GPN/WNED. By entering, entrants agree to abide by the above stated rules, and warrant and represent that their entry is their original work and does not infringe upon or violate rights of any third party, and grant to PBS 45 & 49 and Reading Rainbow (GPN/WNED) the right to edit, publish, promote and otherwise use their entry materials without permission, notice or compensation. No royalties will be paid at this or any time.

Rules Getting Children & Students Started Jumpstarting the Writing & Illustrating Process Inventive Illustrations Frequently Asked Questions Contest Entry Checklist Entry Packet

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