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National Handwriting Contest Winners are honored.

Zaner-Bloser recently announced the National and Grand National Champions of the 2013 National Handwriting Contest. 

By demonstrating exemplary handwriting skills, 16 students from across the nation emerged as National Winners. Of those winners, eight students earned the contest’s highest honor to represent the best in their grade level across the country as the Grand National Champion.

Public and private schools first held their own handwriting contests and entered each winning student, grades 1–8, into the national contest. With an estimated 285,000 entries total, students then advanced to become State Winners in their grade. These State Winners then competed against each other to become the public school and private school National Grade-Level Winners. The 16 National Grade-Level Winners then competed to be awarded top honors as one of eight Grand National Grade-Level Champions. Judges based all contest entries according to the Zaner-Bloser Keys to Legibility: Size, Shape, Spacing, and Slant.

Zaner-Bloser estimates that approximately 3.3 million students have participated in the contest during its 22-year history.

Grand National Grade-Level Champions are bold below.

The Public School National Winners:

  • Grade 1: Nathan Bartley, Weymouth Township Elementary, Dorothy, NJ
  • Grade 2: Madison Hepner, Anasazi Elementary, Scottsdale, AZ
  • Grade 3: Jennifer Lee, Pot Spring Elementary, Lutherville-Timonium, MD
  • Grade 4: Jackie Grisdale, Dobbins Elementary, Poland, OH
  • Grade 5: Caroline Grace White, Northside Elementary, Savannah, TN
  • Grade 6: Lucas Palmer Morse, Rolling Hills Elementary, Mukwonago, WI
  • Grade 7: Jasmine Naomi Washington, Aliquippa Junior High School, Aliquippa, PA
  • Grade 8: Courtney King, Hacker Valley Grade School, Hacker Valley, WV

The Private School National Winners:

  • Grade 1: Milagros Mendoza, Incarnate Word Elementary, Corpus Christi, TX
  • Grade 2: Lukas Cascino, St. Benedict Parish School, Johnstown, PA
  • Grade 3: Zach Kennedy, Corpus Christi School, South Bend, IN
  • Grade 4: Mylinh Nguyen, Blessed Sacrament School, Westminster, CA
  • Grade 5: Kathy Hoang, St. Patrick Catholic School, Fayetteville, NC
  • Grade 6: Isabel Iral, Crosspoint Academy, Bremerton, WA
  • Grade 7: Lauren Ferrari, Holy Infant Catholic School, Ballwin, MO
  • Grade 8: Quinn Krenzel, Immaculate Conception School, Elkton, MD

“Every year our company is honored to recognize the schools and teachers who continue to motivate and teach such a foundational and beneficial skill as well as the students who put their hard work and dedication into handwriting,” said Zaner-Bloser President Bob Page. “The contest also affords us the opportunity to highlight a critical literacy skill that continues to be vital moving forward in 21st century education.”

Zaner-Bloser awards cash prizes and educational materials with a total combined value of over $100,000 to winning students, teachers, and schools. Each Grand National Grade-Level Champion earned a trophy, a check for $1,000, and educational materials for their school valued at $1,000. In addition, Zaner-Bloser awarded the teacher of each Grand National Grade-Level Champion with a trip to the International Reading Association (IRA) Annual Convention in San Antonio.

Nicholas Maxim Special Award for Excellent Penmanship

Along with the National and Grand National Champions, two students were announced as winners of the Nicholas Maxim Special Award for Excellent Penmanship. The Nicholas Maxim Award honors two special needs students (one manuscript winner and one cursive winner) for their penmanship mastery. This year’s manuscript winner is Jhonatan Hernandez, a second grade student at P.S. 229 Emanuel Kaplan School, Woodside, NY. Jhonatan's teacher is Dane Levin. The cursive winner, Paul Alexander Girolamo, is a fifth grade student at St. Egbert Catholic School, Moorehead City, NC. Alex's teacher is Mary Barber. Jhonatan’s and Alex’s special accomplishments are twofold; they have not only displayed exemplary penmanship, but they have also overcome their disabilities to do so. Both winners’ schools will be holding award ceremonies to honor their Nicholas Maxim Award winner and each student will be awarded $1,000 and a trophy.

The Nicholas Maxim Award was created in 2011 in response to a unique entry from a talented young writer, Nicholas Maxim—a fifth grade Maine student born without hands or lower arms. To be eligible for the Nicholas Maxim Award, a student must have a cognitive delay, or an intellectual, physical, or developmental disability. 

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