July 29, 2021

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Summer Reading Contest Week 2: What Got Your Attention in The Times This Week?

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Welcome to Week Two of our 12th Annual Summer Reading Contest.

This contest is open to students 11-19 from anywhere in the world. To participate, submit a response by 9 a.m. Eastern on June 25 that answers the questions “What got your attention in The New York Times this week? Why?”

If you are 13 or older and live in the United States, or 16 or older from anywhere else in the world, post your response in the comment section. If you are a teacher, parent or guardian and your kids or students are 11-12 years old and live in the United States, or 11-15 and live in another country, see the bottom of this post for details on how to submit.

Responses must be 1500 characters — about 250 words — or fewer.

What should you choose? Well, as you know from the rules we’ve posted, you can pick anything published on NYTimes.com in 2021, including articles, essays, videos, photos, podcasts or infographics.

So what did you read, watch or listen to this week?

We hope you’ll click around NYTimes.com and find your own great articles, features and multimedia. But we also know that not everyone who participates has a Times subscription. Because all links to Times content from the student features on our site are free, every week we’ll try to help by posting interesting pieces from a variety of sections.

In Congress, Republicans Shrug at Warnings of Democracy in Peril

A Top Virologist in China, at Center of a Pandemic Storm, Speaks Out

Netanyahu, ‘King of Israel,’ Exits a Stage He Dominated

How to Think Outside Your Brain

Modern Zoos Are Not Worth the Moral Cost

There Are No Fashion Rules Anymore

I Taught Online School This Year. It Was a Disgrace.

I Don’t Know Who Needs to Hear This, but You Are Bi Enough

Demonizing Critical Race Theory

If You Ignore Porn, You Aren’t Teaching Sex Ed

Ted Cruz, I’m Sorry

Stop Saying ‘Post-Pandemic’

What the Rich Don’t Want to Admit About the Poor


The contest rules are all here, and you can read the work of last year’s winners here. A quick overview, though:

  • You can choose from anything published in the print paper or on NYTimes.com in 2021, including videos, podcasts, graphics and photographs. (In your response, please include the URL or headline of the piece you pick.)

  • We’ll post this question each Friday from today through Aug. 13, and you’ll have until the next Friday morning to respond with your picks. Then we’ll close that post and open a new one with the same question.

  • We’ll choose at least one favorite answer to feature on our site each week. Please note that winners from this week will be announced on Wednesday, July 7, instead of Tuesday, because of the Independence Day holiday that week.

  • Feel free to participate each week, but we allow only one submission per person per week.

  • The contest is open to students ages 11 to 19 from anywhere in the world. If you are 13 or older and live in the United States, or 16 or older from anywhere else in the world, post your response in the comments section. If you are a teacher, parent or guardian of a student or child who is between the ages of 11 and 12 and live in the United States, or 11 and 15 and live in another country, then you must submit an entry on the student’s behalf using the form below. All entries from the comments section and the form below will be judged together.

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