PBS Kids PBS Kids PBS Kids
The deadline WAS April 9, 2015.
In fairness to everyone, we are unable to accept entries after the deadline.

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.


Give us your best stories...
and you could be a winner!

Image of Young WriterIf you are in Kindergarten, First, Second or Third Grade, send us your illustrated story!

Join young authors from around the country who send stories to their local PBS station, like WQPT–Quad Cities PBS, to compete for local and national prizes. It's fun, hands-on learning that's become a tradition in families and classrooms across the nation.

Each young participating author will receive recognition

Children who enter through WQPT will receive a special certificate, along with their returned stories. 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.

Finalists and participating classrooms
will also receive free books

In addition, all participants will have the option to receive special offers from Leap Frog® Leap Reader® and Highlights magazine for children.


What You Need to Know

Contest Downloads

Adobe PDF

2015 Story Contest Entry Form and Rules (3 pages)

Adobe PDF

2015 Flyer with Details
and Guidelines

Adobe PDF

Writing Guide (15 pages)

Adobe PDF

PBS LearningMedia (link)


Entry Deadline

The deadline WAS April 9, 2015.
In fairness to everyone, we are unable to accept entries after the deadline.

Outside Our
Viewing Area?

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

Writing Guide

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

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.

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.

National Judging

First place winners will see their stories posted on our website and go on to compete in the national contest for tablet computers, e-readers and MP3 players. The national winners will be announced during the summer. View stories from selected winners online.

Classroom Sweepstakes

Teachers of students who submit stories may enter their classroom in a national drawing for an Arthur library.
Learn more



Resources for Educators & Parents

The PBS KIDS Writers Contest is open to any child in grades K–3 who wants 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. For more information, including details on entering the contest, visit PBS KIDS Writers (National) Contest. 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 regarding eligibility, entry and contest guidelines, please download
the Story Contest Entry and Rules form (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.


Writers Contest Sponsors

At a Glance
Welcome About WQPT Most Popular/Schedule Support WQPT Kids

We value your feedback. Please contact us and let us know how we're doing.

PBS PBS Kids PBS KIDS GO PBS Parents MHz Worldview  

WQPT is a public media
service of Western Illinois University–Quad Cities

Butterworth Center FIGGE Family Museum Midwest Writing Center Lea Reader John Deere Highlights