Poetry Out Loud

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For the past nine years more than 8,100 high school students across New Mexico have participated in the Poetry Out Loud state recitation competitions, sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and The Poetry Foundation. New Mexico Arts, a division of the Department of Cultural Affairs, invites your high school to participate.

State and National Prizes

At the state level, the first-place winner will receive $200 and an all-expenses-paid trip to Washington, D.C., to compete for the national championship. The state champion’s school library will receive a $500 stipend toward the purchase of poetry books. The runner-up will receive $100, and $200 for his or her school library. The national competition awards a total of $50,000 in prizes and school stipends at the national finals. The national champion will receive a $20,000 prize.

What Is The Timeline?

Participating schools will implement the program from September 2014 through January 2015 to prepare for the state finals on February 22, 2015, in Santa Fe.

Where applicable, district-wide competitions will be held to select a winner to represent the district at the state finals.

The program is designed to take one to three weeks to implement in a classroom setting. Many teachers who have participated used Poetry Out Loud in addition to, or as an extension of, their existing curriculum.

How Do I Teach It?

The NEA and The Poetry Foundation have created standards-based curriculum materials for participating schools to use. Each participating teacher/school site will receive a free toolkit, which includes:

  • a teacher’s guide to help teach recitation and performance,
  • an audio guide with selected poems recited by distinguished actors and writers,
  • and an anthology of eligible poems.

In addition to the toolkit, the Poetry Out Loud website (www.poetryoutloud.org) offers resources for teachers including a teachers forum and the expanded online anthology of 650 poems.

New Mexico Arts offers workshops to work directly with students and/or teachers to help them understand and recite poetry. This opportunity is only available for participating schools and districts.

The first ten districts to confirm participation will be included in the state finals competition.

How Do I Get My School Involved?

The deadline to register your school is October 10, 2014. If you would like to participate in the 2015 Poetry Out Loud state competition, or would like more information, contact Phyllis Kennedy, Poetry Out Loud Coordinator, at Phyllis.Kennedy@state.nm.us or 505-827-6490.

For more information on Poetry Out Loud visit: www.poetryoutloud.org

Forms and Resources