[kids-lib] Recruiting Children's & Youth Services Librarians to be Letters About Literature Judges
jennifer.maurer at state.or.us
Fri Oct 30 16:51:36 PDT 2015
Hi. On behalf of Blythe Ayne, Awards Chair for Willamette Writers, I am recruiting three children's or youth services librarians to judge Oregon entries that make it past the national screening for this year's Letters About Literature contest. I need one judge for each of the three competition levels: Level I for 4th-6th graders, Level II for 7th-8th graders, and Level III for 9th-12th graders. A school librarian and an Oregon author will also judge entries for each level. Oregon's three winning letters, one from each competition level, will go on to compete nationally.
If everything goes according to schedule at the national level, you should receive the letters in mid to late March 2016, and the judges phone meeting should be scheduled for sometime in early April 2016. You will be provided some guidelines to help you make judging decisions.
As you may know, Letters About Literature is a national reading and writing promotion sponsored by the Center for the Book at the Library of Congress. Students write letters to an author explaining how that author's book changed their way of thinking about the world or themselves. Letters are sent to the national coordinator for two rounds of screenings. Letters that make it through the screenings are sent to the LAL coordinator for each state. That is now Blythe at Willamette Writers.
High School (9th - 12th grades)
For the high school level, anywhere from about 20 to 35 letters usually make it through the national screening. The time commitment will be about 4 to 6 hours to read the letters at your home or office and up to 2 hours in a phone meeting with the other two judges to select Oregon's winner, runner-up, and any honorable mentions in your age category. Therefore, you are looking at roughly 6 to 8 hours in total.
Middle School (7th & 8th grades)
For the middle school level, anywhere from about 30 to 60 letters usually make it through the national screening. The time commitment will be about 5 to 7 hours to read the letters at your home or office and up to 2 hours in a phone meeting with the other two judges to select Oregon's winner, runner-up, and any honorable mentions in your age category. Therefore, you are looking at roughly a 7 to 9 hour time commitment.
Elementary School (4th - 6th grades)
For the elementary level, anywhere from about 50 to 75 letters usually make it through the national screening. The time commitment will be about 6 to 8 hours to read the letters at your home or office and up to 2 hours in a phone meeting with the other two judges to select Oregon's winner, runner-up, and any honorable mentions in your age category. Therefore, you are looking at roughly a 8 to 10 hour time commitment.
We usually have just over 1,000 Oregon students enter the contest annually, and a large percentage of them receive cash prizes or bookstore gift certificates. These prizes are made possible through support from the Library of Congress, the Oregon Reading Association, and the Oregon Library Association's Oregon Association of School Libraries, Children's Services Division, and Oregon Young Adult Network.
At the national level, 3 first-place and 3 second-place winners will be selected - 1 each per competition level. National winners each receive a $1,000 cash award while second-place winners receive $150 each. Historically, Oregon students do well at the national level, and in the last few years we have had a national winner and several runners-up.
If you have any questions, please contact me. For more information about Letters About Literature, visit http://willamettewriters.com/letters-about-literature/.
If you are interested in helping, please try to respond by Tuesday evening, November 3rd. If you were a judge two or more years ago, you are welcome to help again.
School Library Consultant
Oregon State Library
250 Winter Street NE
Salem, OR 97301
jennifer.maurer at state.or.us<mailto:jennifer.maurer at state.or.us>
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