Independent contests and drawings are a favorite attraction in our YA room. Teens can participate any time and as many times as they like. All that is needed is a drawing box, entry slips, a bulletin board or poster and prizes!
Here are a few ideas I have used:
Unmask the Celebrities
Make a poster with numbered photos of celebrities whose eyes are masked with black paper. The object is to identify the celebrity. If you laminate the poster and tape the masks on top, then you can pull them off at the end of the contest for the answers. Feature biographies in a book display.
Unmask the Musicians
Same as above with photos of musicians. Feature music, musicians, bands books.
It's a Love Match
Make a poster of couples. Number the males and letter the females. The object is to match them up. I use celebrity couples, historical figures and cartoon characters all on the same poster! For the Valentine's holiday, feature dating and relationship books.
Play To Win!
Make a poster of sports team logos. The object is to identify the team and its city. Feature sports books.
Holiday Trivia Quiz
(Multiple choice trivia) Search for Holiday trivia questions on the internet or in books. Cover bulletin board with Christmas or other holiday wrapping paper. Make poster with “cards”- the question on the front and multiple choice answers inside. Make drawing box covered in matching paper. Make entry slips that are numbered and have blanks for a letter answer. Prize idea: holiday candy
Make a poster with a trivia test of interesting facts about turkeys for the Thanksgiving season.
Just Another Love Song
Another matching test for the Valentine season. Number the performers, letter the song titles.
Back To School Countdown
Have a lot of something strange laying around? I had a box of almost 200 red pens, tossed them in a terrarium and covered it with clear book tape. The object was to guess how many pens there were. The poster featured all the back to school services we have to offer students.
Countdown to Christmas Comics Giveaway
This is a drawing. Every day from December 1-24, I pull a winner's name from the drawing box. I feature the comics and graphic novels and how-to-draw comics books in a display. The prizes are comics, collector cards and posters I have collected from various workshops and receive from Naeir throughout the year.
Identify things from your local area. Take a dozen photos of buildings, sign logos or other identifiable landmarks in your neighborhood or town. Use unusual perspectives or close-ups when taking photos. Mount photos on a poster in a collage and number them. Make drawing box and numbered entry slips. Prizes: coupons or other giveaways from local businesses.
My Favorite Thing @ the Library is...
Cover a bulletin board with holiday wrapping paper and wrap a drawing box to match. Make drawing slips with "My Favorite Thing @ the Library is..." and add a space for name and phone number. For the Christmas holiday, I cut 24 squares of wrapping paper, stapled a bow to each and stapled them to the bulletin board. Each day until Christmas, I pull a slip from the box, call the winner, (cut the phone number off the bottom of the slip) and staple the slip to one of the gift squares for a display teens will want to read.
This year, the winners receive a Christmas ornament.
Adapt this same idea for a Valentine's Day independent program with Valentine paper and hearts. Valentine candy would be an inexpensive prize.
Always feature part of your collection that matches the theme of your contest. Try to make your drawing box pretty secure so entries don't wander off. :)
©2012, 2001 RoseMary Honnold.