Children’s Map Competition

Announcing the 2021 Barbara Petchenik Children’s Map Competition to celebrate the creativity, imagination, artistry, and wisdom of child mapmakers!

Postmark entries by April 10 to meet the April 15, 2021, deadline!
Deadline extended to June 15, 2021! Postmark entries by June 10.

U.S. National Competition

Organized by the Cartography and Geographic Information Society, the Children’s Map Competition is a map competition for all children ages 15 years or younger. The goal of the contest is to promote the creative representation of the world in graphic form by children. It is offered every two years to celebrate the creativity, imagination, artistry, and wisdom of child mapmakers.

Children are encouraged to submit a handmade map for this national competition. Teachers are encouraged to promote this competition to their students. First, second, and third place winners are selected in four age categories: under 6 years old, 6 to 8 years old, 9 to 12 years old, and 13 to 15 years old. An entry can be drawn by a single child or multiple children (up to three within the same age category).

National winners will be selected in July 2021 and submitted to the international competition which is currently scheduled for December 2021. Send in your entries by June 10 to meet the June 15, 2021, deadline!

Barbara Petchenik International Competition

Six entries will be chosen to represent the United States in the international Barbara Petchenik Children’s World Map Drawing Competition. This competition, now in its 27th year, was created by the International Cartographic Association to honor Dr. Barbara Bartz Petchenik after her death from a short illness in 1992. Barbara was a U.S cartographer who contributed significantly to modern cartography, especially in the area of children’s maps and atlases.

The international competition includes student entries from around the world, and the maps will be considered for greeting card, calendar, and poster designs for organizations such as UNICEF. The judges select first, second, and third place winners in the four age categories, and they choose a winner for the Creativity Award. Votes by exhibit attendees determine the winner of the Public Vote award.

This Year’s Theme

This year’s theme, “A Map of My Future World!”, may be illustrated in any way, using pictures, drawings, words, objects, or other graphical elements, but the illustration must include (somewhere) a map of all or a large portion of the world, with recognizable continents, age-appropriate features, and/or representations. The maps should tell a story or convey a message about the worldin this case, the world of the future. This future maybe interpreted as tomorrow, or the world in 50 years, or centuries beyond!

Submitting Entries

The first step is to send your entries or your students’ entries to the U.S. Children’s Map Competition. See the Rules and Judging and Teacher’s Checklist pages for more information about submitting entries. Contact Dierdre Bevington-Attardi, the U.S. competition coordinator, at with any questions.


Here are some quick links to resources:

Archives of previously submitted maps in the Petchenik Children’s Map Competition:

Books of maps from the Petchenik Children’s Map Competition:

2019 U.S. entries
U.S. entries in the 2019 international Barbara Petchenik Children’s World Map Drawing Competition

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