Green River Star -

By Stephanie Thompson
People Editor 

Young Authors receive district awards


Star photo by David Martin

Max Lounsbury receives his Young Authors award from Superintendent Jamie Christensen for his story, "The Missing Boss."

Putting ones inner most thoughts down on paper is hard enough, but sharing those thoughts with others who are judging the work is even harder.

Children were asked to use their creative minds to come up with fiction, nonfiction and poetry entries for the Sweetwater County School District No. 2's district-wide Young Authors Competition.

The students work from kindergarten to 12th grade, was judged, but that was not an easy task, according to Fredrick Schwartz, District No. 2 young authors coordinator.

"It was tough," Schwartz said.

As an English teacher he knew what to look for, but even then he had to get a second opinion on some of the entries he judged. A total of three judges reviewed the entries.

Schwartz said he read every, single entry. This year, more than 100 entries were turned in. Schwartz said he didn't have en exact number because some schools had their own elimination processes.

"If they took the time, I am going to read it," Schwartz said.

Judges were encouraged to use a rubric to judge to entries. They were looking for style, voice, creativity, grammar and sentence fluency.

"I don't use it because I am an English teacher, but I did fill them out to show why they won," he said. "Reading the stories is the easiest part of it. The logistical stuff is the nightmare."

As for the actual judging of the entries, Schwartz said he had something others in the district didn't.

"One advantage is being new to the area I didn't know any of the students," he said. "I couldn't play favorites."

To ensure none of the other judges did either, judges did not find out who each entry belonged to until they were done judging.

This was Schwartz' first year running and organizing the competition and awards ceremony, but he felt it went pretty smoothly.

"The event went very well," he said. "There were a few students that won that didn't come."

Last Wednesday, all students who participated in the competition were asked to attend the awards ceremony at Lincoln Middle Schools auditorium. First, second and third place entries were recognized at the awards ceremony. All of District No. 2's first-place winners will advance to the Sweetwater County Young Authors competition.

The winners of the county competition will be announced April 6, at 6:30 p.m. at the Rock Springs Junior High School. The first-place winners from the county-wide competition will advance to state.

Schwartz said he will be part of the judging process on the county level as well. Sweetwater County has always done well at state. Part of that may be attributed to the way their competitions are done. By the time they make it to state, the stories have gone through at least two judging sessions.

"You've got the best of the best," Schwartz said.

The whole writing process should help students' self esteem. Schwartz said he always tell the students participating how brave they are.

"As writers, you're putting your heart and soul on paper for others to judge," Schwartz said. "It's extremely brave."

Schwartz was not only happy with the packed auditorium, but with the parent support he saw. Without support, it's hard for children to participate in these competitions.


Reader Comments


Powered by ROAR Online Publication Software from Lions Light Corporation
© Copyright 2019