On this page:

What You Need to Know
Download Entry Form
Entry Deadline Date
Activity Sheets
Eligibility & Guidelines
Story Contest Sponsors

Need help?
Contact us.


The deadline was March 30.

Image of Young WriterEntries are currently being reviewed and winners will be announced in May.

This fun, hands-on learning event has become a tradition in families and classrooms in the WQPT viewing area.

Each young participating author will receive recognition

Children who enter through WQPT will receive a special certificate, when they pick up their stories after May 22, 2016. Sixteen winners (four from each grade) from the eastern Iowa and western Illinois region will be awarded prizes at a local celebration in May, as well as have an option to appear on-air in a group promotion for PBS Kids programming.


What You Need to Know

Contest Downloads

Adobe PDF

2016 Flyer with Details
and Guidelines

Adobe PDF

Writing Guide (15 pages)

Adobe PDF

PBS LearningMedia (link)


Entry Deadline

The deadline WAS March 30, 2016.
Entries must have a completed entry form which is signed by a parent or guardian.

Outside Our
Viewing Area?

If you live outside western Illinois and eastern Iowa (predominately our viewing area), please contact your nearest PBS station to learn how you can enter.

Writing Guide

Helpful for teachers and parents as a guide to teach better writing skills (available at left).

Local Judging

A panel of regional judges will be comprised of educators, volunteers and story contest sponsors who will read and judge local stories based on these criteria:
40% creativity and originality of plot
and/or themes,
40% story structure and use of literary devices,
20% relevance, quality and originality
of illustrations.

PBS LearningMedia

Sign up for this free library of amazing digital resources for teachers and parents. Enter PBS Writers Contest for resources on teaching young children how to write. Learn more.


Resources for Parents & Educators

The WQPT KIDS Writers Contest is open to children in grades K–3 who reside in our viewing area and who want to write and illustrate their own story. You can help children prepare for the contest by encouraging them to read stories by other students and create new stories using the story creation tool on the PBS KIDS Writers Contest site at PBS KIDS.

Use these support materials to help teach students the elements of story writing. We are pleased to offer these helpful guides and worksheets.

Adobe PDF

Adobe PDF

Adobe PDF

Adobe PDF
Draw This

Adobe PDF
Get Ready
to Write

Adobe PDF
Story Revision

Adobe PDF
Write This


Eligibility, Entry and Guidelines

For complete details, download the Story Contest Entry and Rules document (above).


Entrants must be in kindergarten, first, second or third grade.
Only 1 entry per child will be accepted.
Only single authored stories qualify (no coauthors).
Stories can be fact or fiction, and prose or poetry.
No fee or purchase necessary to enter.


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 must be created on one side of the paper and numbered on the back of each page.

Additional Details & Help

Most questions and additional details may be located in the downloadable Entry Form (shown above).
Need help? Contact us.

Get Adobe Reader

Word Count and Other Details

Kindergarten and first grade stories must have a minimum of 50 words and 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 the 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) must adhere to word count.
Invented spelling is accepted.


WQPT Writers Contest Sponsors


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