And the winner is….

Drum roll, please! We are happy to announce the winner of our “Take Us on an Adventure” writing contest. We received close to 70 entries and Peter Lourie and David Somoza, authors of Writing to Explore, had a hard time picking a winner.

In the end, they agreed that Clara Molot’s scrapbook entry was the one that truly took the readers on an adventure. Here is what Peter and David said about Clara’s entry: “We finally chose Clara Molot’s The Great Michigan Triangle Adventure for its attention to detail and its adventurous and creative spirit. Written as a diary, photos and text combined, the entry is the story of Emma, the daughter of an architect who has taken his family from their home in Detroit to a small town on Lake Michigan for a year. She is at first terribly unhappy but grows to love the unlovable small town and the big lake because of the mysteries that abound, mysteries that she takes it upon herself to solve.”

Congratulations to Clara, who is a sixth-grade student at Sidwell Friends School in Washington, D.C. Her teacher is Rebecca Farnum.

Read Clara’s entry here.

Two of her classmates, Jack Micallef (A Marine’s Account of Guadalcanal) and Jolisa Osborn-Polakoff (A Jew in a Christian’s Shoes: The Story of Erika von Stein) are among the four runners-up in the contest. The other two entries that caught the judges’ eyes are by Gabriela Himmele (On Our Way to Lewis Falls), and by Annalise Cappello (Vacation in Venice.) Gabriela is in the sixth-grade at Manheim Township School District and Annalise is also a sixth-grader at White Brook Middle School in Easthampton, MA.

Congratulations to everyone!

1 comment June 7th, 2011

Writing contest: Take us on an adventure!

Are you and your students already working on your adventure writing pieces? Good! Because we already received a few entries and we are anxious to read more!

Here are the writing contest details: David Somoza, an elementary school teacher, and Peter Lourie, adventure travel book writer, have teamed up to write the new book Writing to Explore: Discovering Adventure in the Research Paper, 3-8. In their book, David and Peter show teachers how to guide students to write interesting, adventurous, well-researched papers that are rooted in real places, supported by facts, and developed with detailed descriptions of images from real locations.

In that spirit, we challenge you to send us your students’ best writing about a state or a place they have lived in, visited, or daydreamed about. When we say “writing,” we mean that  any “old” or “new” form of storytelling is acceptable: photo stories, video clips, interviews, poetry, essays, research papers, or even cartoon strips. The important thing is that as we read your students’ work we’ll feel like we’ve been transported to the place they are writing about.

The essays will be judged by David and Peter and the top five submissions will be featured on the Stenhouse Blog. 

The contest is open to students at all grade levels.

One winner will receive a library of Stenhouse books of your choice (a $150 value), and the following books by Peter Lourie to start your classroom adventure library  (a $180 value): Amazon, Arctic Thaw, First Dive to Shark Dive, Hidden World of the Aztec, Hudson River, The Lost Treasure of Captain Kidd, Lost Treasure of the Inca, Lost World of the Anasazi, On Texas Trail of Cabeza de Vaca, On the Trail of Lewis & Clark, On the Trail of Sacagawea, Rio Grande, Tierra Del Fuego, Yukon River.

Deadline: May 1, 2011

Send your stories to If you would like to send us a larger file, you can mail a CD or thumb drive to Stenhouse Publishers, Attn: Zsofia McMullin, P.O. Box 11020, Portland, ME 04101-7020.

Add comment March 2nd, 2011

Write your own adventure

Peter Lourie is not only a traveler, adventure writer, and author, but he is also a college professor. He is teaching an adventure writing and digital storytelling course at Middlebury College in Vermont. His course takes students out of the classroom to embark on an adventure of their choosing and then the students work together to produce digital stories.

Take a look at this video where Peter and some of his students talk about the class. Peter is the coauthor with David Somoza of Writing to Explore: Discovering Adventure in the Research Paper, 3-8. If you are interested in winning an adventure library for your classroom, find out more about our ongoing writing contest!

Add comment February 23rd, 2011

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