The deadlines have now passed for entry into our spring contests. It is always a joy to come across a teacher who really knows how to teach and you have 30 entries that are each a joy to judge. It always comes down to the teacher. We have some teachers who send in 50 entries and none are accepted. In other cases, a teacher who really works with his or her students sends in 50 entries and all 50 are accepted.
There are several teachers who I wish were teaching my children. I really don’t think these exceptional pieces of art or poetry came from schools with above average students. Many of them come from normal neighborhood public schools. I think a teacher took ordinary students and taught them techniques that ended in extraordinary results.
I hope as teachers see our books and realize what each grade is capable of creating, the bar can be raised. I hope next year, one teacher will look at our contest with the attitude of “Wow! I didn’t know kids could do this quality of work,” and then that teacher will take it as a challenge next year. My hope is that for his or her class the expectations that the students and the teacher have will be raised and another class will produce extraordinary work.
For more information about our national writing contests, please visit www.PoeticPower.com.
For more information about our national art contest, please visit www.CelebratingArt.com.