25 Mar, 2015
10 : 00
YCIS Shanghai hosted an awards ceremony in March for the China-wide LittleStar Magazine –YCIS Short Story Writing Competition at the Gubei Campus. During the ceremony, 39 talented student writers from international schools across China were honoured for their winning submissions in the contest, which required students aged 9-18 to write short stories of 2000 words or less on the theme, “Friends”. The winners were selected from 408 total submissions.
In the months leading up to the ceremony, a team of 16 judges from international schools and educational organisations in Shanghai and Beijing worked diligently to narrow down the list of winners. Additionally, LittleStar editors worked with the judges to ensure that all of the pieces were judged blindly. In total, students from 10 international schools in China won awards, and an astonishing 15 students from YCIS Shanghai earned places or honourable mentions.
The first place award went to Anna, a Year 10 student at Century Park Campus for her piece entitled “Products of Inescapable Randomness”. Her beautifully written piece was unique amongst the other entries as it was the only entry submitted in the form of a letter.
During the event, the lead judge, Ms Einat Natalie Palkovich, a language lecturer and children’s literature researcher at New York University (NYU) Shanghai’s Language Center, presented the awards and critiqued the students’ work. Throughout the ceremony, she conducted on-stage interviews with both the first and second place winners, adding a very personal touch as guests received insight from the student authors behind the fantastic stories.
After students had received their awards, Ms Palkovich gave an inspiring and engaging speech to the students, families, and other guests on the topic of “In the Moment”. She touched on the history of children’s literature, how children read, and the way that students think they are supposed to write. She also provided very relevant tips and information on ways students can become stronger writers and provided new creative ideas for how students could write short stories by focusing on just one moment. Lastly, she challenged the students with a take-home writing challenge: picking one moment from their stories to rewrite into a full 2000 word story.
This is the third year in a row YCIS has collaborated with LittleStar magazine to support this nationwide writing competition for students, as it fits well with providing students with a great platform to practise writing skills learnt in class. YCIS congratulates all of the student writers on their participation in the annual competition, noting that all of the student authors were truly winners.