April is National Poetry Month. I know I’m getting this out a bit late, but better late than never (a cliché that I’m sure all aspiring poets will be careful to avoid in their work).

If you don’t know what National Poetry Month is, it was inaugurated in 1996 by the Academy of American Poets as

…a month-long, national celebration of poetry established by the Academy of American Poets. The concept is to widen the attention of individuals and the media—to the art of poetry, to living poets, to our complex poetic heritage, and to poetry books and journals of wide aesthetic range and concern. We hope to increase the visibility and availability of poetry in popular culture while acknowledging and celebrating poetry’s ability to sustain itself in the many places where it is practiced and appreciated.

That’s from their FAQ, which you can read here.

Resources from the Academy of American Poets

First, start with the Academy of American Poets website, or go directly to their page for the 2011 National Poetry Month. And don’t forget to participate in “Poem in Your Pocket Day” on April 14th. If you don’t have a favorite poem you’d like to share on that day, you can find some here.

2011 poster - click to see full sized

Be sure to get a copy of this year’s poster, as well, by visiting the AAP’s Poster Gallery, where you can get this year’s poster free (while supplies last), order copies of previous years’ posters, or download any of them.

Other Resources

Are You Ready for Poetry Month?” by Edutopia.

ReadWriteThink has a large number of resources for teachers in grades K-12.

NPR has a list of stories they’ve done about poets and poetry, and the show Tell Me More is launching a new series of Twitter poems. You can read the transcript here, and view the tweets here.

The Two Year College English Association (affiliated with the National Council of Teachers of English) has a Poetry Month Celebration, with lots of great multimedia resources.

The National Endowment for the Arts has a page celebrating world poetry.

The National Writing Project has a page with lots of resources for teachers and students.

The Programming Librarian has a list of resources for libraries.

The NEA has “Ideas and Tools for Teaching Poetry.”

For kids and teens aspiring to write poetry, there are some interesting things at Poetry Forge (just click on the “Teaching with Poetry Tools” link), and teacher Alexander Trivas has started One Billion Poets, to encourage the roughly one billion teenagers in the world to explore their world though poetry.

If you work with younger children, this blog post at the Wild Rose Reader, from a former elementary teacher and librarian has many, many useful resources.

For struggling readers, this list of resources from Reading Rockets may be useful.

I know I’ve missed a bunch of resources, since I’m putting this together in a hurry. If you know of others, feel free to drop a comment and tell us about them. Thanks!

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