Elementary student wins KET contest

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By Brad Bowman

Sydney Raymer loves animals.

Her love for animals, reading and drawing made her stand out when she entered The KET Young Writer’s contest.

The annual competition happens every spring. The competition is open to kindergarteners through 5th graders.

Raymer competed against 546 other entries with her submission, “A Zebra Named Ally” and secured third place in the fourth-grader category.

Requirements vary from each grade. Raymer had to write a story with a minimum of 150-400 words and illustrate the story herself.

Helen Moore, KET Education Consultant, Northeast Region, said the first round of judging just ensured that the submissions met the qualifying criteria.

“In the second round, the stories were scored and the top 15-20 stories in each grade were identified for final judging,” Moore said. “A new set of judges was brought in for the final judging and each story was scored again by a minimum of three judges.  In both the second and final round, the entries were scored based on the following criteria: originality, creative expression, storytelling, integration of story and illustrations and the overall impression of the work as a whole.”

For Raymer, creative expression and storytelling comes naturally.

“I like making up stories. I read a lot of books about dogs and cats,” Raymer said. “I also like to make movies on my computer a lot.”

Raymer spends time making her own videos and editing them on a computer at home. She enjoys and spends a lot of time outside with her Pygmy goats, chickens, dogs and cats.

“I love animals,” Raymer said. “We have goats, chickens, dogs and cats.”

In Raymer’s story, she writes about a family of zebras who runaway from a lion and hide in the basement of their home. The zebras find the lion crying outside their home because it just wanted someone to play with.

Raymer looked online at pictures and for help with illustrations. She keeps a stack of books by her bed and loves to read. Her storytelling talent comes with ease.

“I want to be a veterinarian when I grow up,” Raymer said. “I love animals.”

Raymer’s story can be viewed online at: www.ket.org/writerscontest/