Daughters of the American Revolution
The American History Committee of the DAR National Society sponsors two major essay contests during the year: Christopher Columbus essay and American History essay. These are open to all students in public, private, and parochial schools, and registered home-study programs. Essays are judged for historical accuracy, adherence to topic, organization of materials, interest, originality, spelling, grammar, punctuation, and neatness.
Great Backyard Bird Count
This is a fun activity for all ages! Just count the highest number of each bird species seen at one time on any of the scheduled days (annually in February). Then log on to www.birdsource.org and click on your state for a checklist of the most frequently reported birds in that region. The survey form asks a few other questions, including the habitat where the observation was made. Results from the count are updated hourly in the form of animated maps and colorful graphs to view online. Participants will be able to see almost immediately how their observations fit into the continent-wide perspective. Educators are encouraged to conduct the count with their students.
HSLDA Essay Contest
P. O. Box 3000
Purcellville, VA 20134
Hundreds of homeschool students participated in the first Home School Legal Defense Association Essay Contest in 2002. HSLDA President Mike Smith congratulated the students for their hard work. "Seeing essays of this caliber is encouraging, since it shows that God is using the home school movement to prepare young people who know what they believe and can articulate those beliefs." He also thanked all of the students who took time to write an essay and submit it. "For those who didn't win, I hope they try again next year," he said. "I wish I didn't have to choose only three! It's too hard a decision," said one judge. "But it really shows the quality of the work submitted."
In Category I, students from 12 to 15 wrote on the topic, "Who is your hero and why?" For Category II, students from 16 and 18 had to discuss "Why is home schooling good for America?" The winning essays are posted at: http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?ID=490. First place in each category was $500., second was $250, and third was $100. Proceeds from the contest were given to the Home School Foundation Special Needs Fund.
HSLDA National Debate Tournament
P. O. Box 3000
Purcellville, VA 20134
Check out the National Debate section of this website for the latest debate information, including scheduled chat sessions, forums where you can ask questions and receive answers about debate, a web newsletter with interesting and helpful debate information, and more.
1600 Wilson Boulevard, Suite 901
Arlington, VA 22209
This organization sponsors an annual Art Contest, limited to U.S. children in grades 2-4. The winning entry will be printed–along with the artist’s name, age, school name, and hometown–as an IGES greeting card. Additionally, the winning artist will receive a $250 savings bond. The second place winner will receive a $100 savings bond, with a $50 savings bond awarded to the third place winner.
Intel International Science and Engineering Fair
Science Service, Inc.
1719 N. Street NW
Washington, DC 20036
The most prestigious of all science fairs offers resources and information for parents, students and teachers specially designed to provide tips, hints, and links on how to make doing a science fair project a rewarding experience.
U.S. Patent Model Foundation
P. O. Box 26065
Alexandria, VA 22313
A nonprofit K-8 education program that helps children develop creative thinking and problem solving skills through a fun, unique and proven learning tool-- inventing!
JASON is an internationally acclaimed program for grades 4-8. Developed by Dr. Robert Ballard, discoverer of the Titanic wreck, it introduces students to the exciting explorations of scientists in the field. Each year, a different multidisciplinary topic is chosen for the science expedition. Previous expeditions have studied rainforests, volcanoes, oceans, and space. The program involves teacher workshops, print, video and online curriculum materials, and participation in live broadcasts with scientists at the expedition site. The JASON Foundation for Education is dedicated to inspiring in students a lifelong passion to pursue learning in science, math, and technology through exploration and discovery.
Knowledge Open Academic Competition
P. O. Box 998
Durango, CO 81302
A challenging, low-cost academic competition in which teams of students compete without leaving their own schools. Teams in the Knowledge Master Open receive curriculum-based contest questions (200 at secondary levels; 100 at elementary levels) on a disk and compete using a computer at their school. The event is held twice each year for both secondary and elementary level teams.
LifeSmarts is a flexible classroom or group activity that teaches teens to be smart and responsible consumers and citizens. The content and competition questions focus on five key areas of consumer knowledge that teens need to know to function effectively in today’s marketplace. These areas are:
Personal Finance, Health and Safety, Environment, Technology, Consumer Rights and Responsibilities. LifeSmarts is open to all teens in the 9th through 12th grade. The participation of special needs students, exchange students, alternative schools, work study groups, home school groups, and community organizations is encouraged and welcomed. LifeSmarts is FREE to any group of teenagers and their coach who want to participate. There is no fee or registration cost to participate in LifeSmarts.
Make A Difference Day
USA WEEKEND/Make a Difference Day
1000 Wilson Boulevard
Arlington, VA 22229
Make A Difference Day, the largest national day of helping others, is a unique program that inspires and rewards volunteers. Make A Difference Day is sponsored by USA WEEKEND Magazine and is held in partnership with the Points of Light Foundation. A great group project/volunteer opportunity for all ages, held on the fourth Saturday in October.
National Society of Professional Engineers
1420 King Street
Alexandria, VA 22314
Mathcounts is a coaching and competition program for middle school students nationwide.
National Energy Education Development Project
102 Elden Street
Herndon, VA 20170
The mission of the NEED Project is to promote an energy conscious and educated society by creating effective networks of students, educators, business, government and community leaders to design and deliver objective, multi-sided energy education programs.
K-12 group project.
National History Day
0119 Cecil Hall
University of Maryland
College Park, MD 20742
National History Day is an exciting academic enrichment program that helps students learn about historical issues, ideas, people, and events. This academic adventure provides teachers with an innovative teaching tool and fosters students' enthusiasm for learning.
National Geography Bee
National Geographic Society
1145 17th Street NW
Washington, DC 20036-4688
The contest is designed to encourage teachers to include geography in their classrooms, spark student interest in the subject, and increase public awareness about geography. Schools with students in grades four through eight are eligible for this entertaining and challenging test of geographic knowledge.
National High School Mock Trial Championship
State Bar of Wisconsin
5302 Eastpark Boulevard
Madison, WI 53718
608-250-6191; 608-257-5502 fax
The goals of the National High School Mock Trial Championship, Inc., are: to promote greater understanding of and appreciation for the law, court procedures, and the American judicial system; to improve basic life skills, such as critical thinking, reading, speaking, and advocacy; to improve communication and cooperation among key community members, including schools, teachers, government leaders, law professionals, and citizens; to heighten appreciation for the principle of equal justice for all; to promote an awareness of current legal issues; to promote the exchange of ideas among students from throughout the United States while providing a rewarding and memorable experience of interaction.
National Spelling Bee
Scripps Howard National Spelling Bee
P. O. Box 371541
Pittsburgh, PA 15251-7541
The nation’s largest and longest-running educational promotion, designed to help students improve their spelling, increase their vocabularies, and develop correct English usage that will help them all their lives. In general, the program is open to students who have not reached their 16th birthday on or before the date of the national finals and who have not passed beyond the eighth grade at the time of their school finals.
National TV Turnoff Week
All across the country, children and their families voluntarily leave their television sets turned off for one whole week in April. They take part in National TV Turnoff Week through schools, churches and community groups, as families or individuals. The National TV Turnoff event is sponsored by TV-Turnoff Network, a national non-profit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to encouraging children and adults to reduce the amount of television they watch in order to promote richer, healthier and more connected lives, families and communities. How can you and your family participate? Find out if your local school, library, scout or church group has organized a community turnoff campaign. Contact TV-Turnoff Network at 1-800-939-6737, www.tvturnoff.org, or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information about this year's TV Turnoff. If there is no TV Turnoff scheduled in your area, you can still show your support anyway. Talk with friends and neighbors, and especially your own family, about turning off the TV for a week-and turning on the creativity!
National Volunteer Week
The annual National Volunteer Week is scheduled in April around the same time as National TV Turnoff Week. Find out more about it at www.pointsoflight.org/nvw. In communities throughout the country, people join together to make a difference and volunteer locally. If you're looking for something to do instead of watching TV, try volunteering! Find out about volunteer needs in your area or post a volunteer need for your organization at www.volunteermatch.org.
National Youth Service Day
National Youth Service Day is the largest service event in the world, engaging millions of young Americans and focusing national attention on the amazing leadership of young people. National Youth Service Day empowers young people by highlighting their ongoing contributions to their communities and mobilizing their energy, commitment, and idealism through sustainable service. NYSD is held annually during the month of April. For more info, visit http://ysa.org.
President's Council of Physical Fitness and Sports
Poplars Research Center
400 E. Seventh Street
Bloomington, IN 47405
One of the primary purposes of The President's Challenge has been to motivate children and youth age 6-17 to begin and continue an active lifestyle by providing awards for reaching appropriate fitness levels. There are now five Presidential awards that teachers and health professional can offer students.
Museum of Science
Boston, MA 02114-1099
A Science Kit rental program. Imagine opening a box filled with all the science supplies you and your students need to fully explore a topic. Each Museum Kit comes with a teacher's guide filled with engaging, step-by-step, field-tested science activities. Everything you need for investigating your topic is at your fingertips. All Science Kits are also available in home school versions. No activities are omitted; supplies are simply scaled down to 4 students rather than 30. Rental fee for a home school Kit is $30 per week.
SMG Stock Market Game™
Securities Industry Foundation for Economic Education
New York, NY 10271-0080
The original and premier educational program that stimulates learning about economics, finance, and the American economic system. The program is primarily used by students in grades 4 through 12, post-secondary students, and others who want to learn more about investing and managing their financial future. An exciting, real-world simulation, The Stock Market Game enables participants to discover the risks and rewards involved in decision-making, the sources and uses of capital, and other related economic concepts.
At Space Camp, you fly on a realistic, simulated mission, even experience weightlessness - a fun, cool way to spend 5 days!
Ages 9 through adult. Links and games relating to SPACE CAMP (simulated astronaut training)
and AVIATION CHALLENGE (simulated fighter pilot training). Special programs for teachers and homeschoolers.
The Space Day Foundation was recently established with a grant from Lockheed Martin Corporation to support the Space Day educational programs. Space Day is an award-winning global initiative that inspires young people to achieve academic excellence in science, math and technology. According to Senator John Glenn, a former astronaut and also co-chair of Space Day, "The Design Challenges give students opportunities to use the power of inquiry so essential to good science and to find solutions for problems of living and working in space."
Homeschoolers and students from around the world choose from several different educational projects to work on as a team and submit to the competition.
During a week at their state capitol, students get to meet with the Governor and the Secretary of State as well as with Senators, Representatives, lobbyists and other political leaders. TeenPact is an outstanding opportunity for kids to learn first-hand about citizenship, leadership, justice, true statesmanship, and the biblical principles upon which our government was founded. "Public policy is determined more by the majority of the House leadership (three members) than the consensus of the other 97 members. The only hope for promoting the values of America's Founding Fathers in the next generation is to inspire, train, and support young Americans willing to prepare themselves to lead their generation for the glory of God. The TeenPact Leadership School is one of the only truly effective organizations providing an answer for a new generation of Christians who will be greatly out numbered by those holding non-Biblical views." ~Representative Tom Riner, Kentucky
Advanced Network and Services, Inc.
200 Business Park Drive
Armonk, NY 10504
ThinkQuest Programs provide a highly motivating opportunity for students and educators to work collaboratively in teams to learn as they create web based learning materials and teach others.
24 Challenge Math Program
First in Math
Suntex International Inc.
118 N. Third Street
Easton, PA 18042
610-253-5255; 610-258-2180 (fax)
The 24® Challenge is a game that reinforces mental mathematics, problem solving, pattern sensing, concentration and critical thinking, for students in grades 1 through 9.