The Vermont Department of Libraries and the Vermont Center for the Book invite young readers in grades 4 – 12 to participate in Letters About Literature (LAL), a national reading and writing program of the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress.
To enter, readers write a personal letter to an author, living or dead, of any genre—fiction, nonfiction, or poetry, contemporary or classic—explaining how that author’s work changed the student’s way of thinking about the world or themselves.
There are three competition levels:
Level I for children in grades 4 through 6;
Level II for grades 7 and 8,
Level III, grades 9 – 12.
State winners, announced in March each year, receive a $50 gift certificate to Target as well as a prize from the local sponsoring organizations. National winners, announced in late April, receive additional prizes and earn for their school or community library LAL Reading Promotion Grants valued at thousands of dollars.
LAL focuses on reader response and reflective writing. The program provides free teaching materials, including lesson plans, writing samples, assessment checklists, and teacher tips–all downloadable through the program’s website at http://www.lettersaboutliterature.org.
Submissions must be postmarked by January 6, 2012. For information about entering the contest, visit http://www.lettersaboutliterature.org. You can also email questions to the Vermont Center for the Book at [email protected] or to the Department of Libraries at [email protected].