Kids & Teens

Young Playwrights for Change 2022

Submission Deadline February 16th

Limited to students in the 6th - 8th grades

1/18/2022 - 2/8/2022

Hosted by The American Association of Theatre Education (AATE), Young Playwrights for Change is a national playwriting competition for students in 6th- 8th grades. Students write and submit a ten-minute play on the theme based on a theme. Each hosting organization will select and submit one script for this national competition. 


Childsplay Academy is proud to be one of the hosting organizations, and we look forward to submitting a play that represents our community and the voices of young people. We are intentionally selecting students as adjudicators, and this group of peers will select Childsplay's entry for the competition. 


To help students develop and write a ten-minute play, we're offering playwriting workshops with playwright and artistic director Dwayne Hartford. The four workshop sessions meet online from 6:30- 8:00pm beginning January 18th  and conclude February 8th. However, participation in the workshop is not required to submit a script. 


Register for the Playwriting Workshop


  • January 18th - Online Playwrighting Workshop at Childsplay Begin
  • February 16th - Play submitted to Childsplay for Adjudication
  • February 23rd - Childsplay adjudication results announced
  • March 1st - Childsplay's selection submitted to AATE- Each entry submitted by host organizations will receive feedback from AATE and an opportunity for revision before final adjudication.
  • May 5th - AATE announces the winning play


2022 Theme: What Hope Looks Like


What gives you the strength to get back up again? When discouraged or exhausted, why do you keep trying? Keep helping? Keep persisting? Keep believing? Hope is one of the key ingredients of resiliency, but is hope a feeling? An attitude? Or is hope an action? What does hope look like?


Guidelines at a Glance:

  1. Playwrights must be currently in the 6th, 7th, or 8th grades. 
  2. Playwrights must have permission from parent or guardian to enter.
  3. Plays must be original work and not an adaptation of a previous work
  4. Plays must incorporate the theme What Hope Looks Like
  5. Plays may be no longer than ten-minutes when read aloud. 
  6. Plays may have up to but no more than six characters. 


Full Contest Guidelines from AATE


AATE Style Guide


Creative Tips


To Submit a Play:


E-mail a digital copy of the script, which adheres to AATE guidelines and style guide, to Academy Associate, Thomas Underdal at Please make sure that the student's name or other identifying information are not on the script itself. Please put Young Playwrights for Change in the subject line. 


Entry Deadline: FEBRUARY 16th


AATE logo