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cpeaKate Miller, the creative genius behind Charlie’s Playhouse, is sponsoring an evolution art contest for kids. And like everything that comes out of Charlie’s Playhouse, it’s clever and fun.

Kids pick an existing animal, imagine a bunch of them stuck on an island with an environment different from the one they’re accustomed to, then draw the animal after it has evolved to the new conditions. It’s a well-conceived thought problem that underlines the essential principles of natural selection in a fun, accessible way — Darwin’s finches for kids.

Kate has lined up a great panel of judges — Steve Jenkins, author of Life on Earth: The Story of Evolution; Lisa Westberg Peters, author of Our Family Tree: An Evolution Story; blogger Jenny Williams of GeekDad and GeekMom; and cool kids Caleb (6), Izzy (10), and Maiya (9).

Three age categories (4-6, 7-9, 10-12) with awesome prizes for the winner of each.

Deadline for entries is November 15, and winners will be announced December 6.

Learn more and download contest instructions

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Dale McGowan is the author of Parenting Beyond Belief, Raising Freethinkers, and Atheism for Dummies. He holds a BA in evolutionary anthropology and a PhD in music.