Penguin Young Readers has launched the Ordinary Kids Change the World Contest in partnership with iCivics, the nation’s premier civic education provider (founded by former U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor), which reaches more than 7.5 million students in all 50 states each year. The competition is inspired by the bestselling picture book biography series Ordinary People Change the World, written by Brad Meltzer and illustrated by Christopher Eliopoulos. The two newest editions, I Am Anne Frank and I Am Benjamin Franklin, are out now from Penguin’s Dial Books imprint.
The contest, which opened on October 13 and runs through December 31, invites students and classrooms around the country to answer the question: “How would you change the world?” Students ages five through eight and kindergarten through third grade classrooms can submit their ideas via OrdinaryKidsChangeTheWorld.com. One individual student winner and one classroom winner will be selected by Penguin Young Readers, Meltzer, Eliopoulos, and iCivics. The winner will receive $2,500 to help bring their concept to fruition, a meeting with a mentor in their field, and a collection of Ordinary People Change the World titles.
The Ordinary People Change the World series has more than 3.7 million copies in print. In fall 2019, PBS Kids debuted a TV show based on the books, Xavier Riddle and the Secret Museum, which marked one of PBS Kids’ most successful debuts, having been streamed more than 41 million times across the network’s platforms since its premiere.
Meltzer said of the contest in a statement, “The best heroes are always the real heroes. [I’m] so excited to see what kids around the country come up with. And the very best part will be seeing it become a reality.”
Illustrator Eliopoulos added, “Ordinary People can change the world, so I’m overjoyed that children from all over the country have a chance to make a difference with this contest.”