Calling all junior reporters to write for the Ponoka News

Newspapers are an important part of every community and we, as a newspaper need future readers. It is important to encourage the next generation of readers to pick up a newspaper and read the paper.

Newspapers are an important part of every community and we, as a newspaper need future readers. It is important to encourage the next generation of readers to pick up a newspaper and read the paper.

The Alberta Weekly Newspaper Association has announced their annual Mary Readman 2008 Write On contest and there are three different categories for all age groups. From each category the winner will move on to be judged at a provincial level.

The first category is the Creative Classifieds for students in Grades 1 to 3. The challenge is to turn a classified into a story. They will select a classified ad from the paper and using their imaginations they will describe the story of the ad in 200 words. It can be a local ad or one of the blanketed ads and can come from any classified category. It could be an adventure of an old car for sale or the adventure of a lost puppy. They will be judged on originality, human interest, clarity, spelling, grammar and legibility. There will be two winners in the province one from Grade 1 and one from Grade 2 or 3, each will win $100.

In the Junior Reporter category students in Grade 4 to 6 will investigate a school or community event. They can ask their friends or families questions, opinions and comments about the event. The students will write a report of no more than 200 words. The students may also gather enough information on their own to write the report if they wish. They will be judged on if they answered the five W’s of reporting (who, what, where, when and why), clarity, spelling, grammar and legibility. There will be one winner in the province in this category taking home $300.

The finally category is for those students who have an opinion to share in Grade 7 to 12. In the Write an Opinion category students will have a chance to express their opinions on a local issue. They must choose an issue, which directly affects their community, research the topic, use the local paper and other appropriate sources of information and write a letter to the editor. The letter to the editor should be between 100 to 300 words letter to the editor on the issue. They will be judged on clarity of expression, knowledge of topic, logical reasoning, with original thought, spelling, grammar and legibility. Provincially there will be two winners, one in Grade 7 to 9 and one in Grade 10 to 12 each winning $500.

Students in public, separate, private and home schooling are eligible to enter. Entries must be turned in to the Ponoka News by April 28 and local winners will have their work published in the Ponoka News and will advance to the provincial level, which will be judged in May. This year’s theme is bullying but is optional and not required for entries to qualify for.

AWNA is an organization with 113 weekly newspapers in Alberta and the Northwest Territories and in 2005, held their 85th anniversary. According to their website their mission is to encourage, assist and ensure our members publish high quality community newspapers. The association achieves this by prioritizing education, marketing and fellowship.

For more information on the AWNA Write On contest contact the Ponoka News by emailing editorial@ponokanews.com.