How Do I Get a Poet in My Classroom?

It sounds like the beginning of a bad joke, but it’s actually a question that the Dodge Poetry Staff hears a lot.  In the last few months, we’ve highlighted a few of the High School Mini-Festivals that have taken place this year.  As the school year comes to a close, we are beginning to map out next year’s Poets-in-the-Schools programming. We thought we’d use this blog post to share some of the nuts and bolts of Dodge Poet Visits and Dodge Poetry Mini-Festivals.

Dodge Poet Visits and Dodge Poetry Mini-Festivals are a chance for New Jersey High School students to explore poetry with accomplished, published Dodge Poets. Dodge Poets give students a way to relate to poetry that is meaningful and relevant to them, and through their modeling of curiosity and discovery, encourage students to be lifelong readers and poetry lovers.

Dodge Poet Visits and Dodge Poetry Mini-Festivals:

  • introduce students to successful contemporary poets
  • feature classroom discussions where poets share their creative process
  • focus on the students’ experience of poetry through readings and discussions
  • may include a reading to a large audience of students
  • Dodge Poet Visits are one-day events featuring one Dodge Poet.  Mini-Festivals feature several Dodge Poets and may involve neighboring schools.  To minimize the expense to schools, The Dodge Foundation co-sponsors Poet Visits and Mini-Festivals. The staff of the Dodge Poetry Program identifies, hires and schedules your Dodge Poets, ensuring that your event is exciting and meaningful for your students. Recent Mini-Festivals are featured in our Poetry Fridays Blog.  Further information about scheduling can be found on our website.

    We are currently scheduling events for the 2011-2012 school year. Our priority is to bring Mini-Festivals to New Jersey High Schools with the greatest need. If you’d like more information or to speak to us directly, contact Michele Russo, Poetry Coordinator at or 973-540-8442 x113.

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    One Response to How Do I Get a Poet in My Classroom?

    1. Marie Gironda says:

      Ok! So I just received this link from Michele Russo at the foundation, and when the site opened, I saw a picture of my own AP students sitting at the Poetry Festival last Fall!! What are the odds??? I have attended every Poetry Festival since the first one, most of them with students, and I am so excited to invite a poet into my classroom next year!

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