K-12 Idaho Student Writing Contest

Celebrating National Forest Products Week

To celebrate National Forest Products Week (the 3rd full week in October) the Idaho Forest Products Commission sponsors a statewide writing contest for K-12 students. The contest encourages students to learn more about Idaho’s forests, build vocabulary and work toward mastering Idaho Content Standards. Cash prizes are awarded to winning writers and their classrooms!   




Who may enter?

All K-12 students in Idaho are eligible for the contest.

What are the requirements?

  • Scroll down for the Background Statement, Writing Prompts and Scoring Criteria.
  • Include student name, teacher name, teacher email, grade level, school name and town on each entry.
  • Submissions must be in the students’ own handwriting or typing.
  • Teachers: Submit only the top five per class. Teachers with multiple sections of a class may send the top five per class section.
  • Include a list of all student writers for Certificates of Participation.

What are the prizes?

Each winning writer receives a certificate and a cash prize. Their classroom receives $100. Honorable mentions are also awarded. Certificate of Participation are available for every writer.

Cash prizes:













The contest helps students develop flexibility in writing for a specific task, purpose and audience, as well as meeting other Idaho English Language Arts standards. Encourage students to access informational texts and use evidence to support their reasoning. Find links to resources at https://www.idahoforests.org/program-topic/national-forest-products-week/,

When are submissions due?

Submissions must be submitted online or postmarked by NOVEMBER 6, 2023.

What if I have questions?

Email plt@idahoforests.org or call/leave a message at 208-863-1512.



2023 Background Statement, Writing Prompts and Scoring Criteria


Forests and trees provide many things—clean air and water; beautiful places to play and relax; homes for birds, fish and other wildlife; carbon storage; energy savings and numerous wood and paper products people use every day. One of the best things about trees is that they are a renewable resource. When trees are harvested, new ones grow or can be planted. With sustainable forestry practices, our forests can continue to provide their many benefits for generations to come.


Trees and forest products touch your life every day. Write a letter to an audience of Idaho trees or a forest, expressing how you appreciate what they do for you, and what you’ll do to ensure healthy trees and forests for the future. K-1st graders may write or use any media.

NEW!!! WRITING PROMPT for Grades 6-12

With the current focus on sustainability, wood is surging in popularity. Conduct research to learn more, and then write a script for a 30-second audio Public Service Announcement (PSA) to an audience of your peers about the environmental merits of using wood for construction.

K-1st grades: May write or use any other media.
2nd-3rd grades: May write up to 250 words.
4th-5th grades: May write up to 350 words.
6th-12th grades: A 30-second audio PSA uses 60-90 words. Submit your typed PSA script on one page.
NEW! Written submissions must be produced by the student in their own handwriting or, if typed, typed by them.


35% Writing: Ideas are communicated clearly. The document is organized and is neatly handwritten or typed. If typed, it must have been typed by the student. Grammar, spelling and punctuation are correct. Contest guidelines are followed.

30% Content Accuracy: Writing clearly relates to the topic, is accurate and provides supporting details and/or examples. If applicable, sources are cited.

35% Originality/Likeability: Writing shows individual thinking skills. Student voice is evident. The reader is engaged and would like to read more from this student.


Printer Friendly 2023 Student Essay Contest Guidelines 


How to submit

Submit online using the form below. 
Or email to plt@idahoforests.org.
Or mail to IFPC Writing Contest, 350 N. 9th Street, No. 102, Boise, ID 83702

Before submitting!  Make sure that each submission includes teacher’s name and email; student’s full name; grade; school name and town.

2023 K-12 Student Writing Contest

  • Max. file size: 50 MB.
  • Max. file size: 50 MB.
  • Max. file size: 50 MB.
  • Max. file size: 50 MB.
  • Max. file size: 50 MB.
  • Teachers: Include a list of all student writers for Certificates of Participation.