Five students attending Chewonki Elementary and Middle School in Wiscasset earned top honors from the Scholastic Art & Writing regional awards. From left are Hunter Winn, Huckleberry Huber-Rees, Noah Arbuckle, Kat Cassidy (head of the schools), Nyssa Wilkinson and Acadia Guilani. Submitted photo

WISCASSET — Five students attending Chewonki Elementary and Middle School recently took top honors from the Scholastic Art & Writing regional awards as a part of the nation’s longest-running, most prestigious recognition program for creative teens, according to a news release from Chewonki.

Nyssa Wilkinson from Bremen received a gold key award for her short story “Dandelions.” Hunter Winn of Georgetown, Huckleberry Huber-Rees of Alna, and Acadia Guilani of West Bath all received silver key awards. Noah Arbuckle of Newcastle received an honorable mention, as did Wilkinson, Huber-Rees, and Winn for additional entries.

As a gold key winner, Wilkinson’s entry will advance to the national level this year, to be considered for the highest level of awards, including Gold Medal, Silver Medal with Distinction, Silver Medal, and several scholarship opportunities.

“I’m pleased that all five of our students who were eligible to enter the scholastic awards competition were recognized for their writing that spanned multiple genres,” said Kat Cassidy, head of the elementary and middle school. “This is excellent feedback for them as young writers — now they’re receiving positive feedback from other adults out there, and it’s incredibly reaffirming for them.”

The students, who all attend the same seventh/eighth-grade writing class, are accustomed to providing critical feedback to their peers on writing assignments in a supportive yet rigorous writer’s workshop format.

“We couldn’t have done it without everyone’s help,” said Wilkinson. “Group editing, revising, giving our suggestions, saying what we can do better, that’s what made the final product that won the awards. The more we see good writing we see from our peers, the more we know what to do, and the more fun we have writing.”

Huber-Rees also shared appreciation for the team approach, “Because we’re such a tight community, we all really trust each other and give each other great constructive feedback. It’s very comfortable to share because we all have different styles and learn so much from each other.”

Copies of student’s winning entries are available to read at and include writing in the short fiction, poetry, flash fiction, memoir and critical essay categories: “Dandelions” and “Saltwater Canoe Expedition” by Wilkinson, “A Map of My Life” by Arbuckle, “Cardinal Snow” and “Why 3 Day Weekends Can Change Us For the Better” by Winn, “The Cure Conspiracy” and “An Unknown Train” by Huber-Rees, and “Forgetting” by Guliani.

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