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Shahala will be sponsoring an essay contest that follows the criteria of the VFW's Patriot's Pen Contest that is for middle school students across the nation.  We would like to encourage as many 6th, 7th, and 8th graders to participate in the event as possible.  Our area has had both regional and state winners and we know that Shahala can be a part of that as well. 
 
Shahala Middle School will be giving a prize to the top 6th, 7th, and 8th grade essays.  We will have the winners read their essays during the Veteran's Day Assembly on November 8, 2013.    All essays submitted to Shahala will also be submitted to the local VFW where students could win prizes ranging from $1,000 to $10,000 savings bonds and even a trip to Washington DC. 
 
The criteria of the essay/contest is as follows:
 
Prompt:  "What Patriotism Means to Me" 
 
Essay Length: 300-400 typewritten words written by the student
 
All essays should be typewritten in English with no color or graphics and cannot be less than 300 words or greater than 400 words in length.  Every word is counted regardless of length.  The essay title (theme) or added footnotes do not contribute to the word count.
 
The essay will be judged by the VFW on:
      You will be judged on how well you understand, develop and present the theme.  A positive approach is recommended to express your viewpoint. 
 
     Knowledge of Theme:  30 points
     Theme Development:  35 points
     Clarity of Ideas:  35 points
 
Deadline:  All essays must be submitted to the front office, no later than Tuesday, October 29, 2013.  The essays should be accompanied with the official "Patriot's Pen" entry form that will be available in the front office beginning, Monday, October 14, 2013 or click on the link below.