2014 national poetry month kidlitosphere events

Happy April and Happy National Poetry Month!

Looking for some cool ways to celebrate? Check out Poets.org for all kinds of great resources for teachers, students, librarians and poetry lovers of all ages.

This year, the Academy of American Poets is introducing a multimedia educational project called Poet-to-Poet that features seven videos of award winning poets on the Board of Chancellors reading and discussing one of their poems.

Students in grades 3-12 are invited to write their own poems in response to any of the videos and email them by April 30, 2014. All poems will be considered for publication at Poets.org during the month of May. There’s also a set of Lesson Plans aligned with the Common Core for teachers wishing to use Poet-to-Poet in their classrooms.

Check out “30 Ways to Celebrate Poetry Month,” “Poem in Your Pocket Day” (April 24), and the April 2014 Events Calendar. You can also download a free Poetry Month poster.

Now, here’s a list of what some kidlit bloggers are doing. If you’re also celebrating Poetry Month with a special project or blog event, or know of anyone else who is, please email me: readermail (at) jamakimrattigan (dot) com, so I can add the information to this Roundup. Thanks!

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🌻 Irene Latham at Live Your Poem has recruited 30 poets for her third annual Kidlit Progressive Poem. This is a wonderful community writing project where a poem travels daily from blog to blog, with each host adding a line. Charles Waters is contributing the opening line today. More details and full 2014 Roster can be found here.


🌍 At A Year of Reading, bask in “Our Wonderful World.” Each day this month, Mary Lee Hahn will highlight a human-made or natural wonder of the world (selected from a variety of lists) and use it as inspiration for an original poem. So a poem a day and a wonder a day — though we all know poems are wonders themselves, right? Mary Lee invites readers to help celebrate her chosen wonders by leaving a poem or blog post link in the comments. Click here to see the wonders she’s chosen. I am especially fond of #28. 🙂

🌹 Jone MacCulloch will be sharing student poetry daily at Check It Out. She’s also once again doing her annual Poetry Postcard Project, where her students send out illustrated poetry postcards to anyone requesting them. Sign up HERE if you’d like to receive one. At Jone’s personal blog, Deowriter, she’ll be posting original poems each day.

🌸 The always inventive Laura Purdie Salas presents Riddle-ku at Writing the World for Kids. Each day, she’ll post a riddle haiku about a common object with two photo hints/clues and the answer, just right for sharing in the classroom. Kids ages K+ are bound to find this project totally riddle-kulous! 🙂


🌾 Look for Laura Shovan’s Source Poem Series at Author Amok. She’ll be posting three essays/guest posts per week. Contributors will discuss a source poem and/or write a poem in response to it. What’s a source poem? It could be a poem that shifted your thinking, made you want to become a writer, something you return to again and again, etc. See the full schedule of this month’s guest bloggers here.

🌀 At The Opposite of Indifference, Tabatha Yeatts plans to transport us all to wild and wooly worlds via her Directory of Imaginary Poems.  On Fridays she will feature poems old and new about fictional places. She was inspired to compile her Directory after reading “The Dictionary of Imaginary Places” by Gianni Guadalupi and Alberto Manguel. Read more about her project here.

raising hand-1Poetry Month would not be complete without a daily stop at April Halprin Wayland’s blog. After all, this month was named after her. 🙂 She’ll be writing a metaphor and telling us what triggered the idea each and every day. She claims she loves metaphors, but isn’t very good at creating them:

“I’d like to learn to speak this liquid language more fluently. So let’s speak metaphoreeze this month!”

🌳 Here’s your chance to watch a collection in the making. From Amy Ludwig VanDerwater at The Poem Farm:

“I will write a whole collection of poem drafts, one each day of the month, live, for a new manuscript titled THRIFT STORE.  I’ll share notes about process, drafts, audio, and pictures.  By the end of the month, I hope to have a collection worth revising, and I invite you to watch me work.”

📘 Travis Jonker’s annual gallery of book spine poems is up at 100 Scope Notes. He’ll add photos to it all month long, so create those centos, snap a pic, and send it in. Details and tips here.

🌷 Jan Godown Annino at Book Seed Studio is compiling a list of elementary age characters in children’s books who are also poets. She cites the child character Calpurnia in Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings’s The Secret River as an example. Pop over if you have a suggestion!

🎨 I’m looking forward to Diane Mayr’s “Ekphrastic Monday” posts, where she will combine a poem and a work of art. She did this last year and has decided to make it her annual NPM feature. Enjoy her interesting, thought-provoking and sometimes humorous pairings at Random Noodling.


✒ It’s coming down to the wire for Ed DeCaria’s 2014 March Madness Poetry. In its third exciting year, this “live poetry” event moves into the Final Four this week and the Finals next week. Which of the amazing “authletes” from all over the world will take home the prize this year?

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🍩 Turn back the clock for the fabulous 2014 30 Poets/30 Days Redux-Edition from Greg Pincus at GottaBook! Every day he’ll be sharing not one, but two children’s poems from 2009 and 2010, the first two years he hosted this wonderful event. Click here for a list of first-class poets you can expect to hear from this month.


💐 Amy at Hope is the Word will be reviewing a poetry book each Friday this month. Also check out this juicy list of poetry-related links from her archive. Amy is my kind of person — she has Poetry Teas with her kids!

🌸 Over at Reflections on the Teche, Margaret Simon will be writing and posting about poetry forms from A to Z. She’ll share her own work, that of other poets, and student work. My kind of alphabet :).

🌼 Doraine Bennett is challenging herself to write an original cinquain a day. Follow all the fun at Dori Reads!

🌻 Sherry Early will also be presenting an abecedarian collection of poetic forms and types at Semicolon. She’s kicking things off today with “A is for Anaphora.”

🌿 Tricia at The Miss Rumphius Effect is featuring “Poetry and Children’s Books: Perfectly Paired.” Each week she’ll focus on a different subject area and offer special poems and children’s books that support the topic. She begins her project this week with posts about SCIENCE.

🌺 Get ready for some twice-a-week goodness courtesy of JoAnn Early Macken. Wednesdays she’ll be posting poetry-focused Wednesday Writing Workouts at Teaching Authors, and on Fridays look for more poetry writing tips and examples, plus giveaway copies of her wonderful book, Write a Poem Step by Step, at her personal blog.

🌹 Put on your walking shoes: Linda Baie at TeacherDance is using her One Little Word, “wander,” to wander through poetry month — writing some poems, sharing some others, and also sharing some lessons that she’s used with her students.

🌷 At Merely Day by Day, Cathy Mere will be writing a poem each day inspired by an object. She hopes to create mentor texts for her students as they shift to writing poetry in the classroom.

👭 If you need a moment of stillness and contemplation this month, check in with haiku-a-day poets Liz Garton Scanlon at Liz in Ink and Tanita S. Davis at her personal blog. Oh, to capture those fleeting moments in time!

🐞 Over at Caroline Starr Rose’s blog, look for posts from readers, teachers, authors and poets. She begins her celebration of Poetry Month with poet Charles Waters.

🍄 Don’t miss checking in at Poetry for Children, where Sylvia Vardell will post a poem movie every day. These will feature poems from the newly released Poetry Friday Anthology for Science, which Sylvia compiled with Janet Wong. The movies were created by graduate students enrolled in Sylvia’s spring course in poetry for children and young adults, who are interested in experimenting with how technology can be used creatively to promote poetry and children’s responses to it.

🌻 Amy at Mrs. Merrill’s Book Break will be celebrating NPM by sharing photos, poems, and poetry-love tidbits from her school life as well as her personal poetry life.

💐 Hooray for more ABC fun! As part of the 2014 A-Z Challenge, Donna at Mainely Write will be writing an original poem each day related to the title of a book by a Maine author. For example, for the letter B, she’s written a yummy poem for Blueberries for Sal by Robert McCloskey. 🙂  In addition to the poem, she’ll be serving up a side of tidbits about the book itself.

🍎 Remember, not just during April, but each week day throughout the school year you can get a quick poetry fix at Poetry Minute, a website created by Children’s Poet Laureate Kenn Nesbitt. This is an excellent way to become acquainted with many of the amazingly talented poets writing for children today. A fabulous resource for teachers and students.

♥ Finally, don’t forget to check in each week with the April Poetry Friday hosts to see what other bloggers are sharing.

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♥ I’ll continue to update this Roundup throughout April, so do check back!

Wishing you a thoroughly nourishing, inspiring, productive, interesting, and enlightening Poetry Month!


Copyright © 2014 Jama Rattigan of Jama’s Alphabet Soup. All rights reserved.

















21 thoughts on “2014 national poetry month kidlitosphere events

  1. Jama,
    Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. What an amazing collection of April events for National Poetry Month. I see things here I will enjoy and many I will want to share with my students. Poetry is in the air.

    For this month, I’m going to be writing a poem each day on my blog about an object that inspired me to put my fingers on my keyboard: http://merelydaybyday.blogspot.com.

    Can’t wait to check all of these out!


  2. Wow, Jama, what a list. I’ll e-mail you my plans, will be wandering this month! Thanks for every delicious idea from these wonderful places!


  3. Many thanks for rounding up all this poetic goodness, Jama! I’ve pointed folks here from my blog. (One of these years, maybe when I haven’t just moved, I’ll come up with an organized April plan!) ;0)


  4. Wow. How can anyone have time to write this month? There is so much wonderful stuff to read. Thanks for the list and for having Colin’s picture right next to where I am typing this. It’s a bit distracting, but in a good way.


  5. Thank you, thank you dear lady for rounding these up! This page will be my launching pad for poetry goodness this month. I’m not sure how I’ll manage to read it all. I’m predicting a few pajama says in my future!


  6. Oh, thank you so much for gathering me in! I’ve been so busy babysitting and writing lately, I barely get around anywhere in the blogosphere. Getting better at being able to look around now! What a great month!


  7. Wow there’s loads going on. Thanks so much for capturing it all Jama. I wish I wasn’t doing a video course. I just have get round all these :0)


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