Montgomery County students penned eight of the 10 books that are finalists in the Diverse Minds Youth Writing Challenge, a contest in which high school students write and illustrate children’s books about tolerance and diversity.
The initiative was created in conjunction with B’nai B’rith programs that promote tolerance and communicate a message of equality.
The winning author, or authors in the case of joint projects, will be announced at a ceremony Thursday. The first-place winner receives a $5,000 college scholarship and will have his book professionally published and distributed to local schools and libraries. The winning book also will be published online, available for free download.
The second-place winner receives a $2,000 scholarship, and the third-place winner earns a $1,000 scholarship. In addition, the teacher who oversaw the creation of the first-place submission will receive a $500 stipend to use for classroom or organizational materials and the school will win a $500 grant.
The book titles, their authors and the schools they attend:
“A Snake’s Tale” by Bella Salmon and Abigail da Silva, Walt Whitman High School, Bethesda.
“Everyone is Royal” by Chala Tshitundu and Rebecca Hamilton-Levi, Montgomery Blair High School, Silver Spring.
“Bird In Blues” by David Ng and Kayla Trinh, Damascus High School.
“Pepper the Porcupine and the Big Parade!” by Jourdan Lewanda and Andrew Latona, James Hubert Blake High School, Silver Spring.
“Natasha’s Family” by Lori Wysong, Damascus High School.
“Our ABC Culture Picnic” by Carol Anderson, Margaret Mendez and Samara Orellana, Albert Einstein High School, Kensington.
“The Duckling with Two Daddies” by Raluca Munteau, Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School.
“Kudzu’s Talent” by Alice-Yanhong Lu, Thomas S. Wootton High School, Rockville.