High school literacy program expands through NH Poetry Out Loud 2017-18

As New Hampshire educators continue to find innovative ways to engage their students, high schools will incorporate the Poetry Out Loud program into their English/language arts curriculum again this school year. The New Hampshire State Council on the Arts has opened registration for the 2017-18 program, which is limited to 45 high schools and high school groups.

Managed in New Hampshire by the State Arts Council, Poetry Out Loud is a nationwide program where students analyze the language and context of poems that span eight centuries. Participants memorize and recite poems from hundreds have been identified by the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation to represent the breadth of great poetry internationally and across generations. Competitors are judged on the quality of their presentation, accuracy and evidence of understanding.

Participating schools and school groups are provided with free training, professional development clinics and resources for educators; poetry recitation and public speaking clinics for students; and access to an updated online poetry anthology.

Approximately 10,000 New Hampshire high school-aged students consistently participate, mastering public speaking skills, building self-confidence and learning about their literary heritage.

In New Hampshire, winners represent their high school at four regional, semi-final competitions; semi-final winners then participate in the state championship. The state champion travels to Washington, D.C., for the national finals, where more than $50,000 in college scholarships and prizes are awarded to the top finishers.

New Hampshire educators interested in having their high school or regional group participate in 2017-18 New Hampshire Poetry Out Loud and who would like more information should contact Julianne Gadoury by calling 271-0791 or via email to


To learn about New Hampshire Poetry Out Loud 2017-18 or to register, go to: nh.gov/nharts and click on the “Poetry Out Loud” button.