Annual Nebraska Handwriting Contest Taking Submissions Now Through March 31

Julie Agard, assistant professor of teacher education, 308.865.8556, or

Texts from an Aesop fable and a Willa Cather novel are the selections for the 23nd Annual Handwriting Contest, according to contest chair Julie Agard, a University of Nebraska at Kearney assistant professor of teacher education.

“The contest is open to all Nebraska residents to promote legible handwriting as an effective means of communication,” Agard said.

Entries for the competition must be submitted no later than Saturday, March 31, via mail to: Nebraska Handwriting Contest, Attention: Julie Agard, University of Nebraska at Kearney, College of Education, Kearney, NE 68849.

Prizes will be awarded in four categories, including ages 12 and under, ages 13 – 16, ages 17 – 49, and 50 and over. Individuals in the ages 12 and under category will submit text from “The Boys and the Frogs,” an Aesop Fable, and individuals ages 13 and over will submit text from “O Pioneers!” by Willa Cather.

The Sequel Bookstore of Kearney will provide first and second place winners in each category with a $25 and $15 gift certificate, respectively. Winners will be announced via the UNK College of Education website,, by Monday, April 30.

Submitted text should be written in any of the various styles of cursive handwriting, rather than printed. The writing will be judged as a whole according to ease of reading, including features such as fluent rhythmic movement, and technically correct performance of specifications such as slope, space, size and shape of the letters.

Individuals may choose any 8 ½” by 11” paper and writing instrument for the competition. The general layout of the entry, including margins, line spacing and overall neatness, will be considered in judging.

Only one entry per competitor may be entered into the competition. Entries must include: name of entrant, address, telephone number, e-mail address and age, as of Feb. 1, on the back of the entry. Students entering the competition should include the name and address of their school, and the name of their teacher. Teachers should only submit the top three or four entries from each class.

Official texts to be copied by contest participants, and the official contest rules can be found on and

All entries will become property of the Nebraska Handwriting Contest, and will be retained with the right to use them in full or in part in exhibitions or publications. The contest is conducted by the UNK Department of Teacher Education, and is endorsed and supported by the Nebraska Department of Education and the Nebraska State Education Association.

The Nebraska Handwriting Contest was created in 1991 by Tom Hutson of Red Cloud in memory of his mother Eva.