Here is a chance for you to articulate, be it through the written word or through other artistic means, your understanding and personal connections to I Am Malala.  This contest will accept an essay or piece or art (please see below for specific guidelines regarding each medium).  

All submitted pieces will be entered into a random drawing.  Prizes will also be awarded, based on contest guidelines, to an overall winner and a member of each form for their work (essay or piece of art).

Random drawing (All entries eligible for drawing)

  • iPad mini
  • iTunes gift cards

Pro Vita Prize

  • Overall winner will have first choice to the educational-based Pro Vita trips

 Form-wide contest

  • Publication in the Berkshire Scholar (School’s essay publication) or The Dome (School’s art publication).  See School Publications for more information.
  • Publication on Berkshire School website
  • Featured in Bulletin (alumni magazine)
  • Attend evening reception and dine with Shiza Shahid
  • Signed copy of I Am Malala
  • $25 gift card to Shawn’s Place


This contest is open to all Berkshire students. Students must submit original work (no previously-written academic work).


  • Deadline: during start-of-school registration
  • Please include our Honor Code Pledge: I pledge my honor that I have neither given nor received aid on this assignment.



  • The essay should be 500 to 700 words in MLA format
  • Emailed to Mr. Miller by registration

Judging Criteria

Essays will be judged by the staff and faculty members of the ASR Committee according to the following:

  • Provides a clear and interesting claim;
  • utilizes plentiful detail in development of ideas (both from the book and personal);
  • offers impressive syntactic variety with few, if any, grammatical errors;
  • and, contains overall strong organization (clear central idea, strong paragraph structure, etc.).

Prompting Questions

Please choose one of the following prompts to answer:

1.) Have you dealt with a traumatic or life-changing experience? How did you react in the aftermath of that incident? How has it shaped you as a person? How might these experiences relate to Malala’s?

2.) Malala is known for her passion for education and women’s rights. How does her passion for education shape her life? Do you have a particular cause that you care about deeply? Discuss.

3.) Malala’s family now lives in Birmingham, England. Have you ever been uprooted in your life? What happened and how did you adapt? How did that experience shape you? If you are new to Berkshire, how might you anticipate this new journey impacting you? How might Malala’s experiences provide guidance for your new journey?


Create an original work of art inspired by I Am Malala. As with any effective work of art, give care and thought to both the craftsmanship of the piece and the creative ideas behind and within it. Be bold, be original, be provocative!


  • Using the All-School read selection, I Am Malala, as your inspiration and focus, create an original work of art in any media: drawing, painting, collage, sculpture, photography, film, music, dance, etc.
  • The piece must be able to be submitted for review; performance pieces must be recorded or filmed for later viewings.
  • Please include a brief one to two paragraph artist’s statement that articulates the major premise of your piece and how the book and your personal experiences provided inspiration for your piece.
  • Please deliver your piece to the All-School Read table at registration.

Judging Criteria

Pieces will be judged by the staff and faculty members of the ASR Committee according to the following:

  • Presents a strong central theme;
  • draws on specific references to the book; and
  • demonstrates care in craftsmanship. 

Prompting Question(s)

Use the essay prompts above to guide your artistic interpretation of the book.

Berkshire School

245 North Undermountain Road
 |  Sheffield, MA 01257
 |  T: 413 229 8511

Berkshire School is a co-ed, New England college preparatory boarding and day school offering a rigorous academic course of study in the northeast United States. Our campus, located in Massachusetts, has state-of-the-art academic, artistic and athletic facilities on a stunning 400-acre campus in the Berkshires.

Berkshire School received 5 out of 5 stars from over 3 Google reviews.

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