Introducing the Winners of the 2018-2019 Essay Contest!

Catholic Textbook Project 2018-19 Essay Contest Winners

We are excited to announce the winners for the Catholic Textbook Project’s 2018 History Essay Contest! 

Choosing the best essays is never an easy task for our judges. It often comes down to small details. Besides the usual basics in any good essay (grammar, spelling, punctuation, no plagiarism), the judges check for historical accuracy and whether evidence was presented to back personal opinions. They also like to see writing that is engaging yet explains the topic clearly to the reader – especially important with complex historical matters.

Fifth graders were asked to choose a historical character from North America born before 1950 and write about his or her life and work and why he or she was important to the Church and country. 

Sixth Graders were asked to choose a country that they would like to visit and then research that country’s history and write about two places of historical interest they would like to visit there.

Seventh and Eighth Graders were asked to choose a non-North American historical character who lived between 300 A. D. and 1900 A.D. and relate how that person influenced the time and place in which they lived.

High Schoolers were asked to choose and describe an historical event that occurred between 300 A.D. and 1900 A.D, telling also how it changed history.

Thank you to all who submitted essays! Below are the winners listed by grade and homeschool/Catholic school.

Homeschool Divisions:

5th Grade

Winner: Paola Victoria Castillo from Florida
Topic: Paola chose a character from Mexico for her essay “Juan Diego: Our Lady’s Special Messenger.”  Read essay.

6th Grade

Winner: Faith Maxian from Texas
Topic: Faith chose Italy as her topic. Read essay.

7/8th Grade

Winner: David Zepeda from California  
Topic: David wrote about the Spaniard Diego Luis de San Vitores and his work in Oceania in his essay “Hidden Corners of the World”. Read essay.

High School

Winner: Leila Joy Castillo from Florida 
Topic: Leila chose the founding of a new religious order in the United States for her essay “An Enduring Legacy: The Founding of the Sisters of Charity of Saint Joseph”.  Read essay.

Catholic School Divisions:

5th Grade

Winner: Andrew Jensen from Saint Lawrence Martyr School in Redondo Beach, CA 
Topic: Andrew chose a character from the United States for his essay “Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton.”  Read essay.

6th Grade

Winner: Hannah Fernandes from Saint Stephen the Martyr School in Omaha, NE
Topic: Hannah chose India as her topic. Read essay.

7/8th Grade

Winner: Eleanor Rebmann from St. Bede School in Ingleside, IL 
Topic: Eleanor wrote about Queen Nzinga’s role in leading her Angolan people to freedom in her essay “Nzinga, Queen of Ndongo-Matamba”  Read essay.

High School

Winner: Liana Meyer from Immaculata Classical Academy in Louisville, KY 
Topic: Liana wrote about the effects of the bubonic plague on Europe in her essay “The Black Death.”  Read essay.


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