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The Eighth Annual Language Arts Festival at Wayne State College

Published: 1-9-2012 8:40 am

Wayne State College will host its eighth annual Language Arts Festival for students in grades seven through 12 on April 13. Participants are invited to submit original fiction and poetry to a writing contest and bring posters to an on-campus competition. The five best stories and poems from each grade will be published in an anthology. First-place winners of all contests will receive medals.

Students, teachers and parents are invited to the Wayne State Student Center for workshops on writing, literature and drama from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. April 13, with registration at 8 a.m. Presenters will include Nebraska poets Barbara Schmitz, Neil Harrison, Matt Mason and Twyla Hansen. Wayne State College faculty and English education students will give interactive workshops on subjects such as poetry slams, nursery rhymes, and literary quiz bowls.

Writing Contest
Students in grades seven through 12 can submit short stories or poems to a writing contest. The WSC Press will publish an anthology of the best short stories and poems for each grade.

Short stories may be original fiction of any genre: fantasy, realism, science fiction or historical fiction. The stories should be well-written, carefully edited, and titled. Entries are limited to one piece in the short story contest, but participants can submit poetry as well as a short story. Short stories must be no less than 1,000 words and no more than 3,000 words in length.

Poems must be original works on any subject, rhymed or free-verse, length not to exceed two typed pages. Poems should be well-written, carefully edited, and titled. Students can submit a short story and poetry or several poems.

How to Submit
Submissions should be written on a word processor, in Microsoft Word only, double-spaced, using only Times New Roman font in 12 point. Stories and poems must be submitted as attachments to an e-mail. No hard copies will be accepted. Please provide the student's name, grade, school, sponsoring teacher's name and e-mail address, and the title of the story or poem in the body of the e-mail. Attach a copy of the story or poem to the e-mail as a Word document. Save the file containing the story or poem with the student's grade level, school's name in capital letters, st in lower case if a story, po in lower case if a poem, and student's last name.

Examples: 7LAWTONBRONSONstJones (a story from a 7th grader at Lawton Bronson)
                    12PAPILLIONpoSmith (a poem from a 12th grader at Papillion)

This is very important. This information will ensure that your story or poem is placed in the right grade category and that no entries are lost.

On the story itself, type the following information in the top left hand corner of the first page:
Student Name
Student's e-mail Address
Sponsoring Teacher
Sponsoring Teacher's e-mail address
All rights to the composition remain the property of the author.  Permission by the author is given for one-time publication.
Entries must be received by Feb. 16. Send all entries to

Evaluating Writing
Review of the submitted writings will begin shortly after they are received.  Faculty members from the School of Humanities and English education students will read and evaluate all entries. They will select the five best short stories and poems in each grade. Sponsoring teachers of the short stories and poems selected for the anthology will be notified via e-mail.

Wayne State will continue to provide one complimentary copy of the anthology to each student whose work is selected as one of the best five in each grade. Due to funding constraints, we are not able to provide a copy to all students who attend. One copy will be provided to each teacher from each school so that all students can view the anthology.

Poster Competition
Students are invited to bring posters promoting the language arts. These may focus on reading, writing or other language skill, or they may celebrate a work of literature. These will be judged at the event and medals will be awarded to the best entries. A rubric with judging criteria will be sent to each participating teacher. Posters should be the work of only one student, please.

No entry fee is required. All expenses for travel and meals are the responsibility of the student attending the Language Arts Festival. If you choose to eat lunch in the Wayne State cafeteria, the cost per individual is $6.45.

It is not necessary to submit an entry to attend the festival. Teachers who plan to bring groups of students should copy and fill in the registration form below. 

Wayne State College Language Arts Festival Registration 
Please e-mail by March 9.

Teacher's Name_______________________________________________


School Address_____________________________________________________


Number of students attending___________________

Number of adults attending____________________

How many students are bringing posters to the competition?________

Email this information to Lori Newcomb at
Language Arts Festival
Department of Literature and Language
Wayne State College
Wayne, NE 68787

For information, e-mail or call:
Lori Newcomb
Department of Literature and Language
Wayne State College
Wayne, NE 68787
402-375-7104 (office)
This program is funded by an academic schools grant from Wayne State College, Service Learning Grants, and a grant from the Nebraska Humanities Council.


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