Google is kick-starting its fifth Doodle 4 Google contest, giving K-12 students in the US the chance to have their artwork seen by millions.

In a blog post today, Marissa Mayer, VP, Product Management at Google, announced that the search giant is now inviting youngsters to submit their own version of the so-called ‘Google Doodle’, the ever-changing version of the logo on its Search homepage, appearing in different guises according to local events around the world.

K-12 contestants, which cover those from kindergarten through to 12th grade, will get a chance to see their creation featured on the world’s most prominent website – the Google homepage. But there’s more than prestige at stake here, the winning Google doodler will pocket e a $30,000 college scholarship and a $50,000 technology grant for their school too.

Rather than having carte blanche to come up with a doodle, however, each year Google stipulates a theme. And this year that theme is: If I could travel in time, I’d visit…

Screenshot 12 520x298 Google launches its 2012 ‘Doodle 4 Google’ contest, this time each US state has a winner
“That could mean visiting a past, present or future setting—whether it’s traveling back in time to the signing of the Declaration of Independence, to the future to witness everyday space travel, or to just a few moments ago to relive a poignant experience,” says Mayer.

“Building on last year’s record-breaking participation – 107,000 entries! -  we’ve made a few enhancements to the 2012 contest,” she continues. “First, we’re opening Doodle 4 Google up to an even wider audience—with a winner from every state. There will be five finalists and one winner per state, so everyone will have a local doodle champion to cheer on. From these 50 State Winners, we’ll find 5 National Finalists and the lucky National Winner.”

Google is partnering with artists’ supplies manufacturer Crayola this year too, with the winning doodler’s handiwork also appearing on a special edition of the 64-crayon box.

To enter, you need to submit the artwork alongside a signed and completed entry form, you can find more information on the contest here. Submissions are open from Jan 18 – Mar 23, with online voting taking place from May 2 – 10, followed by an awards ceremony on May 17. The winning doodle will appear on the homepage the following day.