Stopping the Spread: Student Scientists in Action - An Archdiocese of Boston Catholic Schools Writing Contest


We are thrilled to invite your child — Ages 2.9 - Grade 8 — to participate in the Archdiocese of Boston Catholic Schools Writing Contest: Stopping the Spread: Student Scientists in Action.

The contest was created by Rhonda Eaton, fifth-grade teacher from Saint John Paull II Catholic Academy, Lower Mills Campus, and Theresa O'Neill, CSO science consultant. They differentiated the contest for all grade levels! This is a great way to come together as a school community and have all students work on the "same" project.

The Timeline:

  • Week of May 10: Contest is distributed by school leaders and classroom teachers to students.
  • May 27: Entries due back to the CSO office via email ([email protected]). All entries must have the student's name, grade, and school in the header. 

The CSO will send entries to the Museum of Science. Museum of Science personnel will use the rubrics created a team to judge the essays and determine the winners.

  • June 19: The Museum of Science will host a live 30 min webinar to announce the winners. There will be one winner per category. 


Part of being successful with your entry to this contest has to do with your knowledge of the subject that you will express to your audience (the reader). Many entertaining, educational resources are included for you to use as research in your planning a grade level entry. Please use these! Ask teachers questions! Be sure to come across as yourself in your writing. A public service announcement must be received by the audience/reader as if the person presenting actually cares about their topic. We all care about the health and safety of one another. This is your opportunity to be heard. 

After you have completed your written contest entry you may choose to:

  • Video record yourself reading your entry.
  • Create a PowerPoint presentation (maybe your voice instructing through the slides).
  • Younger students might want to include a picture of himself/herself holding his/her entry. You may video record explaining your entry!
  • Create a commercial or Public Service Announcement based on your written work

Selected Video Entries may be published on the Museum of Science and /or the Catholic Schools Social Media Platforms. 

Grades 5-8

You are a biomedical engineer who is on a team brought together to prevent an oncoming contagious virus from spreading. Your role is to create a plan and present in as some type of public service announcement. Include information about health care, self-care, social distancing, etc. This announcement must warn the public as well as explain a plan of defense they may be used to remain safe. Use your current knowledge of viruses and their spread to help you construct a detailed presentation in writing. Design a written plan to present to the public in the form of a public service announcement. Your entry may be presented in written form as a standalone format, or you may include a video of “Breaking News” with you reading your public service announcement. This is creative writing with a heavy, science foundation. It needs to be you, as a scientist, explaining this danger to society. 

Grades 2-4

You are the child of a biomedical engineer; this is someone who uses his or her current knowledge of biology (the study of living organisms) and medical care to help improve health care. Your parent has asked you to help inform other kids about a dangerous virus that might come to your area of the state. You, as a biomedical engineer, have decided to write a speech or an informative essay about how to stay safe during a virus outbreak. What might you say to help other kids stay safe and also remain calm during this stressful time. Use your knowledge of social distancing and clean habits to help you construct a detailed piece of writing. This is creative writing with a heavy, science foundation. Your entry may be presented in written form as a stand-alone format, or you may include a video of “Breaking News” with you reading your public service announcement. 

Grades K2-1st

You are explaining to adults in your house how they will be safe from viruses and bacteria with advice from you. If you could be a biomedical engineer for a day (this is a person who studies medical science and living things) what could you tell the adults in your family to do to remain healthy and safe against dangerous illnesses? Why would your advice work? This is creative writing with a heavy, science foundation. Describe your ideas carefully in your writing. Use everything you have learned about viruses and bacteria to help you with your writing.

Grades 2.9-K1

You will draw a picture of you or you and your family doing something that protects you from viruses and bacteria. Think about all the activities you do to stay safe, and draw a picture with details and color that shows your smart actions! Options include: a poster of just you; a poster of you and family members making safe choices; fold your paper and create a comic of yourself throughout the day. Tell your grownup what you drew, and they can write some words under your picture or pictures.

School News