Calling all mini bookworms and budding writers. The Emirates Airline Festival Of Literature is hosting a range of competitions to encourage and inspire children to enjoy reading and writing. From reading challenges to poetry contests, there’s something to spark the interest of all budding creatives.

If you have a child or teen who has been flourishing in their English classes at school or if you think you know the next JK Rowling, the competitions promoted by the Emirates Airline Festival Of Literature could get them the recognition and credentials they deserve.

Registration and submission is now open for the Taaleem Poetry Award, the Oxford University Press Short Story Writing Competition and the Chevron Readers’ Cup Challenge. These annual competitions will be joined by a new addition to the festival – the Qasidah par Coeur, a brand new poetry performance competition aimed at 14 to 18 year olds.

Yvette Judge, Head of Education and Children’s Programming says children are also welcome to enter individually or via their school. “An increasing number of schools throughout the UAE and the Gulf are offering pupils the chance to enter these competitions as they realise they are a fun way to improve literacy standards and help children develop a greater appreciation of reading and writing,” she says. “However, children don’t always have to enter via the schools. The poetry and story-writing competitions are open to all children who want to enter individually.”

The competition categories:

Chevron Readers’ Cup Challenge

This inter-school competition comprises of teams of up to four students who study four books together. All the books included in the competition are by authors of the festival.

Submission deadline: October 24

 Oxford University Press Short Story Writing Competition

Award-winning children’s author, Geraldine McCaughrean, put forward a number of ideas for this year’s short story competition theme. After being put to a vote, children selected ‘Between Hello And Goodbye’ as their’ favourite.

Submission deadline: November 23

Taaleem Poetry Award

Giving children the opportunity to express themselves through verse, the Taaleem Poetry Award is open for submissions under the theme ‘Metamorphosis’. Entries are accepted in both English and Arabic.

Submission deadline: November 23


For more information on Emirates Airline Festival Of Literature 2014, and for registration and submission enquiries, visit here