Registration for 2021 Poetry Out Loud is now open!

Poetry Out Loud seeks to foster the next generation of literary readers by capitalizing on the latest trends in poetry – recitation and performance. The program builds on the resurgence of poetry as an oral art form, as seen in the slam poetry movement and the immense popularity of rap music among youth. Poetry Out Loud invites the dynamic aspects of slam poetry, spoken word, and theater into the English class. Through Poetry Out Loud, students can master public speaking skills, build self-confidence and learn about their literary heritage.

Teachers who would like to participate register themselves for the program. Once registered, each participating teacher/school receives free multimedia curriculum materials – a poetry anthology, audio guide, teachers’ guide, posters and comprehensive website ( all aligned to national standards – augmenting their regular poetry curriculum with poetry recitation and a classroom-level competition. School-level recitation champions compete to advance to the regional, state and then national levels.

New for 2021

  • This year, regional, state, and national finals will all be virtual events, hosted online with students participating from their home or classroom. Additionally, our amazing regional partners will offer coaching online for small groups and individual students and work closely with teachers to help them navigate this new approach to the competition.
  • For the first time, home-schooled students and students attending nonparticipating schools can register themselves for the competition. In lieu of a school-level competition, these students will compete against other individually registered students or advance automatically to the regional finals.