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The deadline for all entries is April 14th, 2014




The PBS KIDS Writers Contest is a national-local contest 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 country to celebrate the power of creating stories and illustrations by submitting their own original pieces. The PBS KIDS Writers Contest is produced by PBS KIDS Raising Readers, managed by WNED-TV, Buffalo/Toronto and implemented locally by Eight Public Television. 

The Arizona contest through Eight, Arizona Public Television begins on January 13, 2014 and ends April 14th, 2014. Award Ceremony will be held on April 25th, 2014 during the “El Dia De los Niños” event at Hance Park in Phoenix – further details coming. These contest rules are subject to modification by WNED or Eight. This promotion is void where prohibited. 

Eligibility & Entry Guidelines

  • Entrants must be in kindergarten, first, second or third grade.
  • 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.
  • To be eligible, an entrant must be a legal resident of the United States. Sponsor reserves the right to disqualify ineligible entries; such entries will not be returned.
  • 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.
  • Any failure to adhere to these Contest Rules may result in disqualification from the contest.
  • No purchase is necessary.

 Participants that enter the local contest through Eight Educational Outreach will have a chance at entry in to the national competition. First, Second and Third place winners will be selected in each grade level in Arizona and the First place winner in each grade level will be sent on to the national competition. The Contest administrators will make every effort, but are not required, to return entries accompanied by a stamped, self-addressed envelope of an appropriate size. PBS, WNED, and Eight are not responsible for late, lost, stolen, misdirected, damaged, mutilated, incomplete or illegible entries, or postage-due mail. 

Entry materials become the property of Eight, AZ PBS. Eight, AZ PBS is not responsible for lost, late, damaged, misdirected or illegal entry forms or unsuccessful attempts to notify prize recipients. All materials submitted as part of the entry form must be the participant’s own original work. The entry form must not contain any unauthorized use of names, likenesses or biographical information of any third parties.

Information regarding the National portion of the contest can be found here.

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 translation 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, photographs, collages, and 3-D.
  • Stories must be created on one side of the paper and numbered on the back of each page.


Official Entry Form

  • Each entry must complete and submit the official PBS KIDS Writers Contest online entry form and print a copy of it to include with the hard copy story. The entry form must have the required signature of a parent/guardian (and, if appropriate, the optional signature of the sponsoring teacher), confirming that the story and art are original, and granting certain rights to the entry materials. ALL entries must have the signature of a parent/legal guardian.
  • The entry form must be complete and legible.
  • All Arizona Entries must be postmarked by April 14, 2014. Entries must be mailed to:
    Eight Educational Outreach
    PBS KIDS Writers Contest
    555 N. Central Ave., Suite 500
    Phoenix, AZ 85004


Local Judging, Awards & Notification

Entries will be judged on originality, creative expression, storytelling and integration of text and illustrations. Eight will judge all local submissions. All decisions of the judges are final and not subject to appeal or review. Odds of winning depend on the number of entries received.

  • 40% Creativity and originality of plot and/or themes,
  • 40% Story structure and use of literary devices,
  • 20% Relevance, quality and originality of illustration

Each local PBS station will send its first place winners to the national Contest, where entries will be judged using the criteria outlined above. All decisions of the judges are final and not subject to appeal or review. Any ties will broken using the creativity and originality category. National winners will be notified on or before April 10, 2014. Each national winner’s story will be posted on the Contest Web site at pbskids.org/writerscontest in 2013. National prizes include tablet computers for four (4) first place winners (Approximate Retail Value (“ARV”) $200 USD), e-readers (ARV $100 USD) for 4 second place winners, and MP3 players (ARV $75 USD) for 4 third place winners. PBS reserves the right to substitute any prize for a prize of equal or greater value, at the sole discretion of PBS. Prize recipients must allow a minimum of 4 to 6 weeks from notification to delivery. Prizes are not redeemable for cash, non-transferable, and non-substitutable, except at the sole discretion of Sponsor.

Read stories that have won on the national level:

Each winner's story will be posted on the Contest Web site at www.azpbs.org/asset, in mid April, 2014


Return of Entries

The Contest administrators will make every effort, but are not required, to return entries only if accompanied by a stamped, self-addressed envelope of an appropriate size. WNED and Eight are not responsible for late, lost, stolen, misdirected, damaged, mutilated, incomplete or illegible entries, or postage-due mail.


Rights Associated with Contest

Submission of the Entry Form constitutes permission for WNED and Eight to use the participants' name, likeness, biographical information, information and materials contained in the Entry Form, photographs, and any statements or remarks made about the Contest in advertising and promotion without further compensation or permission, except where prohibited by law. All entries, and any copyrights therein, become the sole property of WNED and Eight. By entering, entrants agree to abide by the above stated rules, and warrant that their entry is their original work and does not infringe upon or violate rights of any third party, and grant to PBS, WNED, and Eight 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.

By submitting an entry and Entry Form, each participant (and parent or guardian) assigns all right, title, and interest in and to the entry and Entry Form to WNED and Eight and warrants that the participant (and parent or guardian) have the authority to assign such right, title, and interest. In the event that any applicable law requires certain formalities to be fulfilled to effectuate such grant of rights, each participant (and parent or guardian) agrees to cooperate with WNED and Eight to achieve fulfillment of such formalities.

By submitting an Entry Form, each participant (and parent or guardian) agree to be bound by these Contest Rules. Each participant (and parent or guardian) agrees to release and hold WNED and Eight, and their employees, officers, directors, shareholders, agents, representatives, subsidiaries, parent companies, or other affiliated companies harmless from any and all damages, losses, claims and liabilities arising out of participation in the Contest or resulting from acceptance or claiming of any prize hereunder. WNED and Eight reserve the right, in their sole discretion, to terminate, suspend or otherwise cancel the Contest at any time. Income and all other taxes are the responsibility of the prize recipient. WNED and Eight are not responsible for any expenses incurred in connection with participation in the Contest.

Previous Contest Winners

2014 2013 2012 2011

Major Corporate Support Provided By:
Additional Support Provided By:


The PBS KIDS Writers Contest is produced by PBS and is based on the Reading Rainbow ® Young Writers and Illustrators Contest, a concept developed by WNED.  National prizing and promotional considerations provided by LeapFrog® with additional promotional support from Highlights for Children ®. PBS KIDS Privacy Policy

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