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Coordinated in 2018-2019 by
The Center for the Book at the NH State Library
in partnership with Franklin Pierce University

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"NH Letters About Literature News" email feed.

 

The Library of Congress has Discontinued LAL

The Center for the Book in the Library of Congress, which has provided support and all the funding for Letters About Literature to the NH Center since 2004 notified all the state Centers for the Book in mid-June 2019 that they are ending the program:

"The Center for the Book in the Library of Congress is proud of the 27 years it has sponsored the Letters About Literature program with affiliated Centers for the Book. This national reading and writing competition, which has touched more than one million students, has been a source of much joy and inspiration at the nation’s library. We are grateful for your unflagging support of this initiative.

I write to let you know that, after much analysis and reflection, the Library has decided that Letters About Literature will conclude with the 2018-2019 program. The Library has developed a new Strategic Plan, and must focus its resources in direct support of that Plan."

After receiving this notice the NH Center for the Book Advisory Board discussed the issue and determined that without the financial support of the Library of Congress we are unable to offer this program to New Hampshire students for the 2019-2020 school year.

Letters About Literature is a program that supports reading and the thoughtful consideration of how literature relates to our lives and we would like to see it continue in our state. There are several state Centers planning to fund and manage the program within their own states in the coming school year. The NH Center will be looking at whether we can find the resources to resume the program, following the model being created now by other state centers, for the fall of 2020. If this proves possible we will make announcements about our plans by early May 2020.

Letters About Literature was a national reflective writing competition sponsored by the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress until 2019 and presented in association with affiliate State Centers for the Book. Students were asked to write to a favorite author—past or present—describing how that author’s work changed the reader’s view of the world. Readers respond to the book they’ve read by exploring the personal relationship between themselves, the author and the book’s characters or themes. Readers may select authors, living or dead, from any genre—fiction or nonfiction, contemporary or classic.
There were three competition levels: 4-6 grade (level 1), 7-8 grade (level 2), and 9-12 grade (level 3). New Hampshire semi-finalists received certificates and prizes of $100 were given to one student at each competition level. The state winners moved on to the national competition. National winners for each of the three competition levels received $1,000, and national honor winners for each level received $200.

For the 2019-2020 school year several state Centers for the Book are collaborating to run the program in their own states.

 

Questions?

If you have questions about Letters About Literature in New Hampshire, please contact Mary Russell at 603-271-2866.

Past New Hampshire LAL Winners

Sofia Bergskaug, a sixth grader at Captain Samuel Douglass Academy (Brookline), wrote the letter that was selected as the 2019 Level I NH winning letter to Sharon M. Draper.

Madelyn Bergen, an eighth grader at Milford Middle School, wrote the 2019 Level II NH winning letter to Laurie Halse Anderson.

Nilaani Pazhaniappan, an eleventh grader at Nashua High School South, wrote the 2019 Level III NH winning letter to Jennifer Niven.

Julianna Kajka, a fifth grader at Hampstead Middle School, wrote the letter that was selected as the 2018 Level I NH winning letter to Sara Pennypacker.

Brianna Leo, a student at Milford Middle School, wrote the 2018 Level II NH winning letter to Ben Mikaelsen.

Stephanie Chambers, an eleventh grader at Prospect Mountain High School (Alton), wrote the 2018 Level III NH winning letter to Stephen Chbosky.

Isabella Reichard, a sixth grade student at Captain Samuel Douglass Academy (Brookline), wrote the letter that was selected as the 2017 Level I NH winning letter to Esther Earl. Isabella's letter was also selected for a National Honor Award.

Megan McLaughlin, an eighth grader at Hollis Brookline Middle School, wrote the 2017 Level II NH winning letter to Jerry Spinelli.

Kaiden Gilbert, an eleventh grader at Prospect Mountain High School (Alton), wrote the 2017 Level III NH winning letter to Gary Paulsen

Liliana Pistor, a sixth grader at Captain Samuel Douglass Academy (Brookline), wrote the 2016 Level I NH winning letter to R. J. Palacio.

Anthony Perriello, an eighth grade student at Plainfield Elementary School (Meriden), wrote the letter that was selected as the 2016 Level II NH winning letter to Paul Volponi.

Kaitlyn Grant, a senior at Somersworth High School and Career Technical Center, wrote the 2016 Level III NH winning letter to Neil Hilborn.

Zachary Cassidy, a fourth grader at Infant Jesus School (Nashua), wrote the 2015 Level I NH winning letter to Robert Lawson.

Emmy Goyette, a student in the eighth grade at Oyster River Middle School (Durham), wrote the letter that was selected as the 2015 Level II NH winning letter to Laurie Halse Anderson. Emmy's letter was also selected for a National Honor Award.

Joonho Jo, a tenth grader at Philips Exeter Academy, wrote the 2015 Level III NH winning letter to Chinua Achebe.

Salina Chadbourne, a sixth grader at Three Rivers School (Pembroke), wrote the 2014 Level I NH winning letter to Patricia Reilly Giff.

Anna Meldrum, a student in the eighth grade at Milford Middle School, wrote the letter that was selected as the 2014 Level II NH winning letter to Ben Mikealson.

Leah Stagnone, a senior at Campbell High School (Litchfield), wrote the 2014 Level III NH winning letter to Stephen Chbosky.

Elizabeth Ross, a fifth grader at Infant Jesus School, wrote the 2013 Level I NH winning letter to Rick Riordan.

Jillian C. Perriello, a student in the eighth grade at Plainfileld Elementary School, wrote the 2013 Level II NH winning letter to Nicholas Sparks.

Maddie Brown , a sophomore at Lebanon High School wrote the letter that was selected as the 2013 Level III NH winner to Stephen Crane.

Jaden Carrier, a fifth grader at Infant Jesus School, wrote the 2012 Level I NH winning letter to David Lubar .

Isabelle Todd, a student in the eighth grade at Oyster River Middle School, wrote the 2012 Level II NH winning letter to Natasha Friend.

Christopher Maloney, a senior at Goffstown High School wrote the letter that was selected as the 2012 Level III NH winner to Christopher Paolini .

Drew L. Stetson, a fifth grader at Stratham Memorial School, wrote the 2011 Level I NH winning letter to Robert Frost.

Erin Angel Choate, a student at Lisbon Regional School, wrote the 2011 Level II NH winning letter to David Pelzer.

Jake Tinkham, a senior at Gilford High School wrote the letter that was selected as the 2011 Level III NH winner to Brian Jacques.

A letter to Judy Blume from Kristin Chan, a fifth grader at Infant Jesus School (Nashua, NH), was selected as 2010 Level I NH winner.

Lauren Kiessling , a student at Haverhill Cooperative Middle School, wrote the 2010 Level II NH winning letter to Jodi Picoult.

Sarah Schott, a student at Belmont High School wrote the letter that was selected as the 2010 Level III NH winner to John Irving.

A letter to Lois Lowry from Peyton Plante, a sixth grader at Three Rivers School, was selected as 2009 Level I NH winner.

Merisa Dion, an eighth grader at West Running Brook Middle School in Derry, wrote the 2009 Level II NH winning letter to Allen Say.

A letter to Martha Tod Dudman from Heather Coen of Hopkinton was selected as the 2009 Level III NH winner.

A letter to Beverly Cleary from Angela Wang of Nashua, was chosen as the 2008 Level I NH winner.

A letter to Carolyn Mackler from Sydnie Spencer, a student at Oyster River Middle School, was the Level II 2008 New Hampshire winner.

A letter to Jodi Picoult from Livie Lane of Dover was the Level III New Hampshire winner for 2008.

Letter to Frances Hodgson Burnett from Marissa McCoo of Pembrook was chosen as the 2007 Level I NH winner.

Letter to Davida Wills Hurwin from Livie Lane of Dover was the Level II New Hampshire winner for 2007.

Letter to Anne Rice from Rachel Arnold, a student at Milford High School, was the Level III 2007 New Hampshire winner.

Letter to Natalie Babbitt from Izzy Starr of Hollis was chosen as the 2006 Level I NH winner.

Letter to Jenni Schaefer from Kylee Drugan-Eppich of Madbury was chosen as the 2006 NH Level II winner and as a runner-up in the national competition.

Letter to Rowland Sill from Steve Therrien of Exeter was the 2006 Level III NH winner.

Letter to Patricia Polacco from Shauna Casey, a homeschooled student from Salem, was chosen as the 2005 Level I NH winner.

Letter to Thornton Wilder from Evelyn Bulkeley, a student at the Runnemede School in Plainfield, was chosen as the 2005 Level II NH winner.

Letter to Candace Goldapper from Samantha Lo, a student at Thorntons Ferry School in Merrimack, was chosen as the 2004 Level I NH winner.

Letter to Tamora Pierce from Helen H. Aki, a homeschooled student from Weare, was chosen as the 2004 Level II NH winner.

Letter to Stephanie S. Tolan from Zoe Cannon, a homeschooled student from Nottingham, was chosen as the 2004 Level III NH winner.

 

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