5th Grade Story Contest

Every spring the Berkeley Branch holds a story contest for Bay Area Fifth Graders.

The Berkeley Branch of the 102-year-old California Writers Club is proud to sponsor the

30th Annual 5th Grade Story Contest

A Contest for 5th Grade Students in Alameda and Contra Costa Counties

Award Certificates and Prizes up to $500

Please tell all the 5th grade teachers you know in Alameda and Contra Costa Counties that our contest is open! Students can win cash prizes, and the winning story is posted on our website. Deadline is March 30, 2016. An awards ceremony will be held in June, details TBA.

Click here to download flyer.thinkingcap-main_Full

Teachers and home-school educators in Contra Costa and Alameda Counties are invited to submit one story per student by any number of students. The entry fee is $1 per submission. Entry fees and donations help the club to offer this contest. We can receive payments via Paypal, cash, or a check payable to CWC–BB or California Writers Club – Berkeley. Please indicate the school name on check.

Use this link to pay with Paypal — please tell us the name of your school, how many entries, and any additional donation amount. Thank you!

Award Certificates and Prizes:

  • $100 for the best short story written by a fifth-grade student in Alameda or Contra Costa County;
  • $75 for Second Place;
  • $50 for Third Place; and, depending on number of entries,
  • up to 7 Fourth Place prizes of $20.

We will honor the teacher of the grand-prize winner with a cash award of $50. Teachers are entitled to submit an unlimited number of entries.

Contest Rules:

  1. Only teachers and homeschool educators may submit entries; entries from students are not accepted.
  2. Stories must be original and the student’s own work.
  3. Only one entry per student may be submitted; teachers may submit any number of entries.
  4. Entries may not exceed 1,000 words in length.
  5. Entries must be prepared per guidelines below.
  6. Postmark cannot be later than March 30, 2016.
  7. Send to:  Story Contest, 2320 Webster St., Berkeley, CA 94705
  8. Entries cannot be returned.
  9. Names of entrants (first name and last initial) will be posted on this page when received.
  10. All participants are invited to the Awards Ceremony in June, date TBA.

Preparation of Entries:

  • Stories must be typed and printed on one side only of standard white 8-1/2 x 11-inch paper.
  • Please, no fancy paper, covers, or artwork.
  • First page must include title of the story and the word count.
  • Do not write the author’s name or other identification anywhere on the story.
  • On a separate sheet print clearly:  1) Title of story 2) Student’s name 3) Teacher’s name
    4) Teacher’s email 5) School name and address.  (This sheet will be removed during judging.)

The contest will be judged by California Writers Club members through a process known as “blind reading.” This means the judges will not know the name or school of the author of the story.

Names of the winners will be announced on May 15th on our website. Local newspapers will be notified. Awards Ceremony will be held in June, details TBA—all participants are invited! CWC may publish stories for educational purposes only.

Click here to see past winners!

We suggest teachers consult www.coreygreen.com, setonhill.edu, questgarden.com, or other guides to elements of the short story, to help students produce their best work.

Questions? Contact us!

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