National poetry contest open to Maine high schools

Maine high schools are invited to register for Poetry Out Loud, a nationwide program that encourages youth to learn about poetry through memorization and performance. Poetry Out Loud helps students master public speaking skills, build self-confidence and learn about their literary heritage.

The event can take place in your school anytime between now and Jan. 17, as the program does not require full class periods and can be completed in two to three weeks.  In addition to providing a meaningful arts education experience of poetry in written and spoken form, prizes are awarded to successful students and schools at the state and national level, including a $20,000 scholarship awarded to the national champion.

There are many opportunities to make Poetry Out Loud a larger part of your high school’s curriculum in English language arts or visual and performing arts, including the program’s alignment with the updated Maine Learning Results English Language Arts Standards and the College and Career Readiness Anchor Standards for Reading and Language.

Poetry Out Loud is organized by the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation and is administered at the state level by the Maine Arts Commission. Last year over 7,500 students and more than 185 teachers from 36 Maine high schools participated in Poetry Out Loud.

As you consider registering your school, take note of the following timeline:

  • September – November – School registration (ongoing)
  • Nov. 22 – Last day to register
  • Jan. 17, 2014 – Last day for school-wide competitions
  • January – February – Poetry Out Loud regional workshops
  • February – Maine Regional Finals
  • March Maine State Finals
  • April 28-30 National Finals

Resources and more information

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