| ||December 2014 Writing Contest |
MONTHLY WRITING CONTESTS: StageofLife.com hosts monthly international writing contests for people of all ages and life stages. Answer the real-world writing prompt below to share your thoughts and experiences as we change the world, one story at a time. View winners of past writing contests.
Writing Contest: Random Acts of Kindness
|ENTER YOUR ESSAY...
For our December 2014 writing contest, we are making a call to action for everyone to commit a Random Act of Kindness and write about it.
What we want for the contest: In 500 words or less, using the blue "Submit Essay" button, write a personal reflection about your experiences of either performing a random act(s) of kindness, or describe your experience being on the receiving end of a random act of kindness from someone else.
Background: December marks the start of a frenzied need to give gifts. For this holiday season, we want you to dig deeper into your kindness and give some of it to others. Then, we want you to write about the experience of either performing the random acts of kindness or, if you'd prefer, share a story of when you were on the receiving end of a random act of kindness from someone else.
Maybe you will choose to pay for someone’s food at a restaurant. Maybe you will give others hugs (not in a creepy way) or offer compliments to someone that you don’t know that well. Possibly you will help out a neighbor in need by shoveling snow, or baking them cookies. Maybe you will help someone across the street or give a random person a flower.
How will you commit a random act of kindness this December?
Consider these thoughts when you write your essay (don’t answer all these questions, but use them as a launching point to mine your memories for ideas):
- Have you ever performed a random act of kindness? What did you do? How did it make you feel?
- Have you ever been on the receiving end of a random act of kindness? What happened? How did it make you feel?
- Do you and your family (or friends) have traditions revolving around random acts of kindness?
Click the blue "Submit Essay" button to the right to upload your story and enter the writing contest.
- Do you belong to an organization that regularly commits random acts of kindness?
Title of Essay:
When you submit your essay, title it as: "Random Acts of Kindness: ______"
Include the phrase "Random Acts of Kindness" as the beginning of your essay title, but then make the rest of your story title unique.
- Random Acts of Kindness: Tipping my Waitress $100
- Random Acts of Kindness: Singing for Seniors
- Random Acts of Kindness: The Angel and the Crumpets
- Random Acts of Kindness: The Car Miracle on Christmas Eve
Three simple rules for the Stage of Life writing contest.
1) This is a Non-Fiction essay contest.
2) Essays are 500 words or less.
3) Essay must be your original work.
Midnight December 31, 2014 Pacific Time US
Winner will be posted on our writing contest winners page after January 26, 2014.
Random Acts of Kindness Lesson Plan:
Stage of Life created a Lesson Plan to go along with this month’s contest. To review more ideas on how to use Random Acts of Kindness in the classroom, explore our free lesson plan...
(click to submit your essay)
Essay winner receives gift card prizes from our sponsors and copy of the book, "Random Acts of Kindness" by Lisa Verge Higgins. Details below
Writing Contest Resources
Videos about Random Acts of Kindness:
Random Acts of Kindness List
Practical ways to perform random acts of kindness and pass on a list to those you impact so that they, too, might pass on the kindness.
“A 1st Grader's Act of Kindness Just Restored Our Faith in Humanity”
If kids can show so much kindness to each other, why can’t the rest of us?
"High School Wrestler Shows his Competitor an Incredible Kindness"
This video shows how helping others who are less fortunate than ourselves can make a big impact.
“My 38 Random Acts of Kindness”
A Ted Talk by Botlhale Tshetlo at TEDxSowe describing her 38 Random Acts of Kindness
Education Prize Sponsors
Writing Contest Prize Package
- The person who writes the 1st place essay will receive gift cards compliments of our education sponsors, SpaWeek and Applebee's.
- National press release exposure for your essay from StageofLife.com
- Bragging rights
Winners will be contacted via a post on their story once judging is complete (approx. 30 days after contest ending). An email will be sent to the winner to get the address for the prize package approx. 1-2 months afterwards.
Please thank our sponsors for supporting the writing and literacy efforts on StageofLife.com
Enter our Twitter Contest
Enter our Photo Contest
|Contact Us about this Writing Contest
Quotes for inspiration:
“When we feel love and kindness toward others, it not only makes others feel loved and cared for, but it helps us also to develop inner happiness and peace.”
- The 14th Dalai Lama (1935)
"That best portion of a man's life are his little, nameless, unremembered acts of kindness and love."
EXTRA INFORMATION AND RULES FOR THE WRITING CONTEST...
Be Real. Be Yourself: The strongest submissions for this essay contest will use a personal tone and point-of-view writing style that shares your thoughts on the topic. If you want to make your essay even stronger, we recommend doing a little research and adding quotes or a statistic (or two).
- Essays should be 500 words or less.
- You are welcome to blog on StageofLife.com as much as you want, but only ONE essay submission per user for the writing contest is allowed.
- Please be creative with your title, then type or cut and paste your full essay from a program like NotePad or TextEdit (don't use any formatting - just text, please) into the Story Details field (which will appear after you click the Submit Essay button above.
- Adjust the spacing of your essay within the essay submit form.
- Title your essay using the instructions above so our Editors can find it in the story feeds in your life stage homepage on the website. Example: Here's where the high school student submissions get posted - High School
- StageofLife.com is a non-partisan literacy initiative. We judge the writing contest submissions not on the political or religious stance of our writers, but rather on how creative, original, passionate, and well written the essays are. See below for more details on our judging policy.
- Read these tips for good essay writing to be considered a writing contest finalist
- You will need to login to StageofLife.com to submit your writing contest entry. If you don't have a StageofLife.com login, please register for StageofLife.com (it's free).
Prize Package: The winning writer will receive...
- A highlight as the Winning Essay on StageofLife.com
- Prize from the writing contest sponsor mentioned above.
- A mention and link to your essay in Stage of Life's national monthly press release - here's a link to one of our press releases for reference.
- NOTE: Winners will be contacted via a post on their story once judging is complete (approx. 30 days after contest ending). An email will be sent to the winner to get the address for the prize package approx. 2-3 months afterwards.
Free Essay Contest:
This is a free writing contest. StageofLife.com does not require a submission fee. ONE ESSAY ENTRY PER PERSON FOR THE WRITING CONTEST. However, you are welcome to blog about your life or other topics outside of this writing contest at any time on StageofLife.com
Last day of the month at midnight Pacific Standard Time (US). StageofLife.com time stamps all essays in Greenwich Mean Time (England) as we are an international writing initiative. International submissions are welcome.
Of the submitted essays to StageofLife.com for a given writing contest prompt, one student winner and one adult winner will be selected. The winner and semi-finalists will be announced after the 20th of the following month. Winner and semi-finalists will be contacted by a StageofLife.com staffer via the email used to register for the website.
As we state in our Writing Contest Rules and Judging Criteria, student writers selected as our national essay finalists and winner(s) will demonstrate strong writing skills, a unique point-of-view, personal tone, originality, and realness in their essay.
The reason that journalists and organizations ranging from TIME.com to Mint Education have featured our essays (especially our teen posts) in the national media is because our bloggers all write from the heart. Real people sharing real stories about their lives. Combine this with our position as one of the only international, non-partisan, literacy platforms in the world and you'll find Stage of Life an open environment to share your ideas.
We'd like to encourage all participants and readers to make comments on these writing contest essays. Please just remember to keep all comments/posts/discussions civil and in good taste in each of the essay-blog threads, especially since some of our writing prompts are sensitive in nature. Nasty comments, personal attacks, or other such comments are not allowed and will be removed should they come to our attention.
If you have questions about the rules or judging criteria for our writing contests, you can visit our Rules & Judging Criteria page.
Last Words - Share Your Story:
Our hope is that your writing contest submission will positively impact others and help with our mission of making the world a better place, one story at a time. Your essay may inspire others or even better, give you an opportunity to share a story that's simply important to you.
After you've submitted your essay, feel free to share the link to your essay on Facebook or Twitter. Our essays are judged by real Editors, not popularity, but we do like to spread the word about our national, grassroots writing contest. Also, please share this writing contest with Language Arts, English and History teachers, or on your blog or website.
If you know a teacher who would like a Stage of Life writing contest poster for his or her classroom, have them contact us.
Read more about StageofLife.com and our mission
Good luck! Scroll back up and click on the "Submit Essay" button to upload your essay.