ADE Director's Communication Memo Form

Memo Number : LS-07-022

Date Created : 08/30/2006


Co-op Directors
Secondary Principals
other: English Instructors
Speech/Oral Comm. Instructors

Type of Memo: Informational
Response Required: Optional
Section:   Learning Services - Dr. Laura Bednar, Assistant Commissioner
2006-2007 Poetry Out Loud Contest

Regulatory Authority:

Contact Person:
Christopher Barnes

Phone Number:


Arkansas Arts Council is pleased to announce the second annual Poetry Out Loud: A National Recitation Contest. Poetry Out Loud is a program organized by the Arkansas Arts Council in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation that encourages the nationís youth to learn about great poetry through memorization and performance. Through this program, students are given assistance in developing strong public speaking skills and in building self-confidence. All statewide high schools are invited to participate in the contest.

The contest will follow a traditional pyramid structure similar to the National Spelling Bee. Each participating school will commit to using the National Poetry Recitation Contest program during September-February of the 2006-2007 school year to identify a school champion. All school champions will then compete to represent Arkansas at the national level on Saturday, March 10, 2007, at the William F. Laman Public Library in North Little Rock, Arkansas. The national contest will be held in late April 2007 in Washington, D.C. The Poetry Foundation will provide monetary prizes, and the Arkansas Arts Council will ensure that funds are available to travel to the national event.

The schedule and curriculum utilized by the Poetry Out Loud program have been specifically designed not to obstruct other classroom activities and curricula. In addition, the curriculum and activities of the program directly correlate with the current Arkansas English Language Arts Curriculum Frameworks, specifically standards one and two of the Oral and Visual Communications strands.

Interested parties may view the attached Program Overview and Fact Sheets for more detailed information about the Poetry Out Loud program. There will also be specific program materials available for participating schools. Information may also be obtained through the program website:

In order to participate in the Poetry Out Loud Contest, a school official must complete the attached School Entry Form that includes the name of the teacher who will coordinate this activity in collaboration with Arts Council staff and return it to the Arkansas Arts Council office no later than 4:30 p.m. on Friday, September 22, 2006. All statewide schools that return a School Entry Form will receive an updated teacherís guide, an anthology of approximately 100 poems, posters, and other curriculum materials.

For more information, contact Cynthia Haas, Arts in Education Program Manager, at 501-324-9769 or by email at


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