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We want to know! In celebration of the Scholastic Awards’ 90th anniversary year, we’re asking all of you to tell us why art and writing are important in your life. Give us your opinion here, and you could win a FREE copy of our 90th anniversary book, The Great Encouragementwhich provides an in-depth look into the incredible 90-year history of the Awards and the students who have made it what it is today. You can also get a copy of The Great Encouragement by making a donation here to support the work of the Awards.

It’s hard for us to imagine a world without art and writing. They both bring out creativity like few other activities. In fact, Scholastic Awards founder Maurice R. Robinson once said that teens who produce art and writing are “acquiring something infinitely valuable – a feeling for beauty, which will color their entire lives, and the lives of those about them. There lies the great encouragement.” (Foreword to Saplings. Scholastic Publishing Company, 1928, and featured in The Great Encouragement).

We all have individual reasons for expressing ourselves creatively through art and writing, and that’s what makes each act of expression so special and unique. So tell us, why do you create or appreciate?

Enter to win a copy of The Great Encouragement now.

1942 Scholastic National High School Art Exhibition Catalog

1942 Scholastic National High School Art Exhibition Catalog, featuring Philip Pearlstein‘s award winning oil painting.

Guest blogger Haley Richardson is the Archivist for the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers. She spends her days sorting through historical documents, photos of past Award recipients, and other unique archival materials to help organize and document the historical legacy of the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards. She will be highlighting her favorite materials from the collection each month!

Far below the sunny and bustling SoHo offices of the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers, behind the Scholastic copy center and across the hall from the aged vending machines, is the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards Archives Office. Filing cabinets and flat files are filled with Award-winning student writing and artwork, photographs of art exhibitions and awards ceremonies, and unique artifacts representing our 90-year legacy.
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Cover Image: Gaetano Icangelo. Desk Writer. Grade 12, Age 17. 2012 Silver Medal with Distinction, Art Portfolio.

Originality, technical skill and the emergence of a personal voice: the clear presence of these three elements qualifies student writing for a national medal in the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. More than 500 works earned this accolade in the 2012 Awards, and it fell to student editor Haris Durrani to choose about 15% of those to include in The Best Teen Writing of 2012. How did Durrani, who only last year earned a Portfolio Gold Award for his own writing, decide which pieces would make it into print? Here, in this excerpt from his introduction, he explains. You can read more—and see what he selected—when the book comes out this fall!

I’ve always stood by the maxim “Writing is more than words.” It’s not words
themselves but their power that relates the human condition to a universe of
ideas.
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Photo Credit: The Adroit Journal. Samantha Marcus, Turn to Clear Vision. Grade 11, New Canaan, CT.

Hi! My name is Peter LaBerge. I am a seventeen-year-old high school student born and raised in Connecticut. This year, I received a Gold Medal in Poetry and a Silver Medal in Flash Fiction from The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. I also received the 2012 Elizabeth Bishop Prize in Verse as well as the 2011 Renee Duke Youth Award from Poets for Human Rights.

In November 2010, I founded The Adroit Journal, a literary magazine for all ages with a special leaning towards the work of young writers and global human rights issues. The journal has claimed over 1,300 submissions from writers and artists across the creative spectrum—from college students in New York City to retired farmers living on the Spanish coast. Read More

"The Arrival," by Shaun Tan. Published by Arthur A. Levine Books (2009).

Scholastic author and illustrator Shaun Tan shared some of the secrets behind his work in this interview. Tan is the author of numerous illustrated works, including The Arrival (2007) and Tales from Outer Suburbia (2009). This interview first appeared in The School Library Journal.

With a wordless debut novel (The Arrival, 2007, Scholastic/Arthur A. Levine) and a collection of 15 stories (Tales from Outer Suburbia, 2009, Scholastic/Arthur A. Levine), Shaun Tan continues to gain worldwide attention for his work. In June 2009, The School Library Journal spoke with him about the perils of fame, the nature of his writing, and his inspiration. Read More

Adroit Journal. Fabio Rodrigues, Awkward, Right?. Grade 11, Tampa, FL. Photography.

Hello! My name is Peter LaBerge. I am a tenth grader living in Connecticut. I have a passion for writing that was born entirely by coincidence. My first poem was written a year ago as the result of a mandatory deadline for a school-wide literary magazine. If I hadn’t been required to submit writing, I doubt I would call myself a writer today.
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