The National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation have partnered with state arts agencies on an exciting program, Poetry Out Loud: A National Recitation Contest, which helps students master public speaking skills, build self-confidence, and learn about their literary heritage.
Conducted as a competition, students choose a poem from the poetryoutloud.org site and participate in a classroom competition. The high scores from this competition may qualify students for the school competition. At this level, the 12 – 15 competitors choose two poems and the school contest will produce one winner. This student will move on to the regional contest held at the Joslyn Art Museum and encounter the other 11-12 competitors from our region. The top 4 – 6 scores from this contest will proceed to state, where each student will prepare the recitation of a third poem. The state competition produces one winner who advances to the National Recitation Contest.
State winners receive an all-expenses-paid trip to Washington, D.C. to compete in the National Finals. A total of $50,000 in awards and school stipends will be given at the Poetry Out Loud National Finals, including a $20,000 award for the National Champion.
Poetry Out Loud does not require a team and easily fits into an already busy schedule.