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Power of the Pen
Mrs. Paulus--writing coach
7th grade
Mrs. Vestal--writing coach
8th grade

Power of the Pen is Ohio's exclusive, award-winning educational program devoted to excellence in creative writing.


2016-17 School Year


Congratulations to the members of the Power of the Pen teams as they successfully competed to earn medals and trophies at the District Power of the Pen held at Botkins High School on Saturday, February 18, 2017. The seventh grade team of writers won second place overall. Megan Mills won a Best of Round I and received a fifth place overall, as well as Grace Rader receiving an eighth place overall. At the eighth grade level, Macy Duhaime won first place overall 8th grade and Mariah Booher received a seventh place overall eighth grade. The eighth grade team also brought home a second place trophy overall. The next competition is the Regional to be held here at Houston High School on Saturday, March 11, 2017.


8th Graders Macy Duhaime(1st place overall) and Mariah Booher (7th place overall)

7th Graders Grace Rader (8th place overall) and Megan Mills (5th place overall and Best of Round I)

8th Grade Team members with their Second Place trophy. (Front Row): Gus Gothberg, Macy Duhaime, Mariah Booher (Second Row): Collin Walker, Iona Downing, Maddy Wills, Kierstyn Oberdorf

7th Grade Team members with their Second Place trophy. (Front Row): Viola Kies, Keirstin Ludwig, Megan Mills, Grace Rader (Second Row): Ava Knouff, Grace Slade, Callie Lentz


2015-16 School Year


Congratulations to Houston's Power of the Pen writers. Macy Duhaime placed 9th and Maddy Wills placed 11th in the Regional Power of the Pen competition held here on Saturday, March 12th. Also a big congrats goes out to Clarissa Kiehl who snagged a Best of the Best award. All three of these writers will advance to the State competition in May.

The competition on Saturday was a huge success. We received many compliments about our facility; how new it smelled and how clean and organized everything was. Finally thanks to Mr. Maier, Mr. Claypool, Mr. Stephens, Mr. Brown, Ms. Ayers, Ms. Heitkamp, Mrs. McClurg, custodial and kitchen staff, all teachers who graciously allowed us to use their rooms, and finally all our student volunteers who helped as runners. You ALL made Houston proud!

Power of the Pen State Qualifiers Maddy Wills, Macy Duhaime, and Clarissa Kiehl


Congratulations to the 7th and 8th grade Power of the Pen teams on a successful District competition on Saturday, February 14th! The 8th grade team placed 4th overall with Jacob Trent and Patrick Miering placing 5th and 7th, respectively. 7th graders Maddy Wills placed 11th and Macy Duhaime placed 4th. Macy also received a Best of Round Award for her writing in the 2nd round. Great job teams!

Congratulations to the team members that qualified for the Regional Power of the Pen Competition. They are 7th graders: Macy Duhaime, Maddy Wills, Mariah Booher and 8th graders: Jacob Trent, Patrick Meiring, Lexi Royse, and Clarissa Kiehl. The Regional competition will be held right here at Houston High School on March 12th. Additionally, Clarissa Kiehl was chosen to receive the Director's Choice Award. This award is given to the student whose paper was deemed one of the best by the State Power of the Pen director, Loraine Merrill. Congratulations, Clarissa and to all the Regional qualifiers.

8th grade team placed 4th overall. Team members (left to right): Clarissa Kiehl, Hannah Hollinger, Lydia Lentz, Patrick Meiring, Jacob Trent, and Lexi Royse

7th grade team members (left to right): Collin Walker, Gus Gothberg, Mariah Booher, Iona Downing, Macy Duhaime, and Maddy Wills

Jacob Trent placed 5th and Patrick Miering finished 7th

Maddy Wills finished 11th and Macy Duhaime placed 4th


Macy Duhaime receiving Best of Round



2014-15 School Year


Houston's Power of the Pen teams were armed and dangerous at Ft. Loramie on March 28th with a creative weapon---a pen.  The 8th grade team, consisting of Addie White, Olivia Bowser, Makayala Gudorf, Brandon Hemsworth, Shelby Ayers and Jacob Slater snagged a 3rd place team finish.  Individual winners were 2nd place, Makayla Gudorf and 4th place, Addie White.  The 7th grade team consisting of Lydia Lentz, Korie Deal, Jacob Trent, Hannah Hollinger, Patrick Meiring and Clarissa Kiehl stunned the crowd with a repeat performance of their 1st place win at districts...1st place at Regionals. Individual winners were 6th place, Korie Deal and 4th place, Clarissa Kiehl.  Best of Round winners were Round #1, Addie White, Round #2, Clarissa Kiehl and Round #3, Olivia Bowser. The icing on the cake came at the end of the awards ceremony when it was announced that Houston won the coveted Sweepstakes Trophy. This traveling trophy is earned by a combination of 7th and 8th grade scores at both the District and the Regional tournaments. Six writers qualified to move on to the state competition on May 21-22 in Wooster, Ohio. They are 8th graders; Olivia Bowser, Makayla Gudorf, Addie White and 7th graders; Korie Deal, Clarissa Kiehl, and Lydia Lentz. Congratulations to all our writers! We are very proud of you. 

The 7th grade and 8th grade team pictured with their awards including the Sweepstakes
Trophy, the 7th grade's 1st place trophy, and the 8th grade's 3rd place trophy.

Addie White - 4th place overall and Best of

Olivia Bowser - Best of Round

Makayla Gudorf - 2nd place overall

Clarissa Kiehl - 4th place overall and Best of


Korie Deal - 6th place overall



It happened on Saturday morning! Both Power of the Pen teams made history as first-time, team, trophy winners! The 8th grade team brought home a third-place win overall, and the 7th grade team racked up the points to win first place. First-time, team achievements means both teams will advance to the next level which is Regional Competition held at Ft. Loramie HS on March 28th. But that's not all. Individual writers Addie White won first place, overall 8th grade and best of round, while seventh graders Korie Deal and Jacob Trent placed 11th and 7th. Congratulations to ALL team members for your writing achievements! Trophies will be on display in the high school office.

8th Grade Team

8th Grade First Place Individual
7th Grade Team 7th Grade 11th and 7th Place Individuals

2013-14 School Year

District was held at Botkins High School on February 15, 2014 where seventh grader, Addie White, received a medal for 8th place.

Regional competition was held at Ft. Loramie High School on March 29, 2014 and after an exciting weekend of success, the Power of the Pen regional participants received the following awards:

Eighth grader Hanna Cassel received a 6th place trophy over all eighth graders. She also received a Best of Round paper, judged by professional writers against all #1 papers in round 1, and in round 3 her #1 paper received an Honorable Mention. Makayla Gudorf received a medal for placing 8th among seventh graders. Addie White received a trophy for 3rd place against all 7th graders, along with having her #1 paper win a Best of Round. Congratulations to all writers for doing their best at representing Houston's Power of the Pen teams. Hanna, Makayla and Addie have all qualified to participate at the State level in May.

7th grade team members are: MaKayla Gudorf, Shelby Ayers, Jacob Slater, Olivia Bowser, Addie White,  and Brandon Hemsworth.

8th grade team members are: Hanna Cassel, Lauren Brubaker, Rosalena Bryant, Angelina DiLullo, Reece Pitchford, and Harmoni Wissman.

Pictures from competitions


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