Children’s literature is always a popular category. Students write, design, and illustrate an original children’s book. The competition culminates with a live read-aloud before a panel of judges. This competition can either be an individual or pair event. Click the link below to find out more, including competition requirements and scoring rubric.

General Information

The book may be written and illustrated by one individual (the author/illustrator) or two individuals (an author and an illustrator). The one or two Educators Rising student members participating in this competition must write all words and create all images themselves for their submission. No artist assistance or use of images from the web or any other third-party is permissible. (For students who competed in this event in previous years, this is a change in Educators Rising policy.) The participant will prepare the original short story book format designed for a kindergarten-through-third-grade audience (ages 5–9).

Book Guidelines

  1. Write a short story in a “book” format in English. The story can be about anything but should reinforce either academic or social/ emotional values appropriate for public school. The book can qualify for up to five extra points if it is created successfully as a bilingual text — the same story in English and one other language spoken in your community. Translation must appear on the same page as English text. The second language does not need to be read during the presentation. Sign language will be considered another language. To earn extra points for sign language, the participant must sign all of the text for the book during the presentation.
2. Only one additional language will be considered for extra points.
3. A signed “Statement of Originality” must be completed and submitted with the book.
4. This book should be written for a kindergarten-through-third-grade audience (ages 5–9).
5. The book includes a front and back cover, a title/credit page, and no more than 32 pages.
(32 pages front only or 16 pages front/back excluding title/credit page).
6. The title page should include the title of the story, appropriate age audience, author, illustrator (if different from author), teacher leader’s name, school, contact information: email and high school address.
7. Maximum book size is 14” X 22” and should be bound using a durable user-friendly method of binding. (Commercially produced bound books are allowed for binding purposes only. Use of stock images or templates is prohibited.)
8. Text or graphics may be either illustrated by hand or computer generated, but the student participants are responsible for composing or creating all text and graphics themselves. No artist assistance or use of images from the web or any other third-party is permissible. Illustrations should be colorful, and art should amplify the impact of the reader’s experience with the story. Neatness counts.
Presentation Guidelines
1. The author and illustrator will bring a copy of their book and Statement of Originality to the competition to present and read to the judges.
2. Acceptable presentation length, including the story introduction will be between five and 10 minutes. Presenters exceeding 10 minutes or under five minutes will be deducted one point for going over 10 minutes or under five minutes and one additional point for every additional 30 seconds over or under the time limit.
3. The author and illustrator will introduce and read the book to the judges.
4. A time-keeper will hold up time cards as a warning at four minutes and again at nine minutes. The presentation will be stopped at 12 minutes.
5. After the presentation, judges will have time to ask questions and finish scoring sheets. Judges will review the book and score. Once judges have completed scoring, they will return the book to the participant.
6. Presenters should wear conference-appropriate clothing or dress in character costumes relevant to the book. No additional props can be used during the presentation.

Children’s Literature (K-3) Detailed Information