Every year our contests become more and more central to what we do.
Hearing from teenagers around the world on the issues and ideas of the day — whether via essays, editorials, political cartoons, photography, videos, poetry, podcasts or culture reviews — has become, for us, an essential part of our mission of “teaching and learning with The New York Times.”
In fact, this year for the first time ever, some of our winning student work has been featured in print in a new quarterly Times education section. In April, we featured images by teenage cartoonists; in June we published student editorials; and in August we printed some ideas from our “connections” contest. This year we hope to include even more, so please share this post with the teenagers you know.
Below, a calendar of each contest’s dates to help you plan ahead. All our contests but one — last year’s “News Diet” Challenge — are back, and we’re starting the school year with a new challenge that invites students to take photos that show us teenage life today — and add nuance to media and adult stereotypes about their generation.
We’ll update this page with all the relevant rules, submission forms and related lesson plans as the date for each contest approaches. For now, we have included links to contest rules, lesson plans and winners from past years for reference since the guidelines for our contests stay more or less the same year after year.
Remember, all our contests are always open to anyone 13 to 19 years old, from anywhere in the world. The work students send us is then considered by experts, whether Times journalists, outside educators from partner organizations, or professional practitioners in a related field. Winners and their work are always honored on our site with special posts that go out to our entire audience.
Sign up for our weekly newsletter if you want to be sure not to miss contest announcements. If you have questions, post them in the comments section and we’ll answer you there.
And if you’ve been a winner or runner-up in our previous contests, or a teacher who teaches with any of them, we’d love to hear from you for a forthcoming piece. Please write to us at LNFeedback@nytimes.com.
Please note: Last year we began a new tradition of honoring student voices from our daily writing prompts by choosing favorites to highlight in our weekly Current Events Conversation. We’ll continue that tradition this year.
2018-19 Student Contest Calendar
My Generation Photo Contest Sept. 6-Oct. 15, 2018
What can you show us from your own life, or the lives of those around you, that might help make that portrait more interesting, nuanced, complete or real?
In this contest we invite students to take photographs that depict some aspect of teenage life that they think may be misunderstood, ignored or largely unknown, and, in a short artist’s statement, tell us why.
• Contest rules and a related lesson plan to come
Review Contest | Oct. 11-Nov. 12, 2018
Review a book, movie, restaurant, album, theatrical production, video game, dance, TV show, art exhibition or any other kind of work The Times critiques.
Editorial Cartoon Contest | Nov. 8-Dec. 10, 2018
Draw an editorial cartoon on a topic you care about.
Connect What You’re Studying in School With the World Today | Dec. 6, 2018-Jan. 21, 2019
What does the Civil War — or evolution, or Shakespeare or anything else you’re studying in school this year — have to do with your life and the lives of those around you? Why should you remember it once you’ve taken the test? What parallels do you see between it and something happening in the news or in our culture?
In this contest, we invite students to address those questions by matching something they are studying in school to anything they like that was published in The Times in 2018 or 2019, and tell us why they made the connection.
Vocabulary Video Contest | Jan. 17-Feb. 18, 2019
Produce a 15-second video about the meaning of one of our Words of the Day.
Editorial Contest | Feb. 21-April 1, 2019
Write an editorial on an issue that matters to you.
Found Poetry Contest | April 4-May 6, 2019
Create a poem composed from words and phrases found in Times articles.
Podcast Challenge | April 18-May 20, 2019
Make an original podcast, of five minutes or less, to inform and entertain listeners.
Summer Reading Contest | June 14-Aug. 23, 2019
We ask, “What interested you most in The Times this week? Why?” each Friday for 10 weeks.
Have you been a winner or a runner-up in any previous contest we have run? Have you taught with our contests? We’d love to hear from you. Please write to us at LNFeedback@nytimes.com.