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Poetry in the classroom and Social Emotion Learning

Poetry Out Loud is a national poetry recitation competition that encourages high school students to learn about and appreciate poetry. The program provides students with the opportunity to explore and analyze poetry, develop public speaking skills, and build confidence in their ability to express themselves. 

Participating in Poetry Out Loud and using poetry in the classroom can have a positive impact on students’ Social Emotional Learning (SEL). By engaging with poetry, students are able to explore complex emotions and ideas, and develop empathy and understanding for others. Additionally, the act of reciting poetry in front of an audience can help students build self-confidence and overcome anxiety. Poetry and Literature can improve SEL by offering positive avenues to explore emotions, cultural difference, and understanding. 

Poetry Out Loud is a valuable tool for educators looking to improve social emotional learning outcomes for their students. By providing students with the opportunity to engage with poetry, develop public speaking skills, and build confidence, the program can help students develop the skills and emotional intelligence they need to succeed both in and out of the classroom. 

Interested in participating in Poetry Out Loud 2024? Register today!

How does your district score on Social and Emotional Competence? 

What These Results Mean

Social and emotional learning (SEL) refers to the process through which children and adults acquire and apply the knowledge, attitudes, and skills necessary to manage emotions; set and achieve positive goals; feel and exhibit empathy for others; maintain positive relationships, and make responsible decisions. SEL is fundamental not only to children’s social and emotional development but also to their health, ethical development, citizenship, motivation to achieve, and academic learning.

The social and emotional competence composite score measures students’ perceptions of their own skills in the areas of self-awareness, social awareness, self-management, relationship skills, and responsible decision making. Developing students’ SEL skills improves their grades, attendance, behavior, and attitudes toward school. Many risky behaviors (e.g., drug use, violence) can be prevented when schools strive to develop students’ social and emotional skills through effective SEL instruction and student engagement with positive activities. Students with good social and emotional skills are less likely to drop out of school.

In schools where social and emotional competence scores are high, students report that social and emotional skills are very easy for them to employ. For example, students may report that they have little difficulty recognizing their own emotions, learning from others with different opinions, or finishing challenging tasks. Students also may report that they have an easy time calming themselves and showing empathy.

Source: The Nevada Department of Education, “The Nevada School Climate / Social Emotional Learning Survey,” 2021-2022.

How does Poetry Out Loud benefit my students?

Why teach Poetry Out Loud to your students? 

This program helps students:  

We’ve gathered some plans that can help students develop their communication skills, empathy, and self-awareness. By engaging with poetry, students can learn to express their emotions, understand the perspectives of others, and develop a sense of community. Overall, Poetry Out Loud is a valuable resource for educators looking to teach social and emotional competence in a creative and engaging way.

Follow the links below to check out free lesson plans created by Poetry Out Loud.

How does poetry out loud work?

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