Poetry Contest 2014 Packet Information

Jackson District Library Poetry Contest 2014 Entry Packet

SUBMISSION DEADLINE EXTENDED!!  Due to the weather conditions resulting in school cancellations, we have decided to extend the entry time for submissions for the Young Poets Contest by one week.  Entries must be submitted online or postmarked by February 7, 2014.   If you have any questions, please contact Jean Dailey at daileyjl@myjdl.com or 517.788.4099, Extension 1308.



Contest Rules

1. Any student enrolled in grades 1-12 in a Jackson County school, any home-schooled student, and any GED student in Jackson County may enter the contest.

2. Poems must be the original work of the student and may be written on any subject except their name, but must be only one page (maximum of 500 words) in length. No art work should accompany the poem, nor should the poem be pasted on colored paper.

3. Poems must be typed or written neatly. (Preferably on 8 ½ x 11 paper, except for primary students.)

4. The student’s NAME, GRADE, and SCHOOL must appear on the back side of the page of your poem. (No identifying information should appear in the poem or on the poem side of the page.)

5. Each poem must have a student registration form (signed by parent or guardian) stapled to the upper left-hand corner of the poem.

6. Each student may submit only one poem.

7. Poems may be submitted through a school, a library, or online at www.myjdl.com.

8. All poems become the property of the Jackson District Library and will not be returned. Please keep a copy of the students’ poems. The Jackson District Library retains the first rights for publication of prize-winning poems.

9. All poems must be postmarked byFebruary 7, 2014 and received within one week of that date.



1. Four winning entries (First, Second, Third, and Honorable Mention) will be chosen for each grade level.

2. Student authors of the winning entries will receive a prize, a certificate, a ribbon, and a copy of the Young Poets 2014 booklet and an autographed copy of a book by our guest poet. In addition they will be asked to read their poems aloud and receive their prizes at the Young Poets Awards program to be held in April 2014 featuring a nationally renowned poet as the Guest Speaker.


1. Members of our Poetry Panel will judge the poems.

2. Poems will be judged by grade level.

3. Poems will be scored on the basis of creativity, vocabulary, quality of verse (rhythm, meter, word choice, wordplay, imagery, etc.) and creative expression.

4. Decisions of the judges are final.

5. Winning entries for the contest will be announced in late March 2014. The Young Poets Awards program will be held in April 2014.


Jackson District Library

Attn: Jean Dailey

244 W. Michigan Ave.

Jackson, MI 49201

Young Poets Contest, 2013


1. You may submit only one poem, which is no longer than one page and 500 words.

2. Write your own, original poem. DO NOT COPY ANY PART OF SOMEONE ELSE’S WORK. This is plagiarism and you will be disqualified.

3. Please do not use your name in your poem as this identifies you to the judges.

4. Type or print your poem neatly on 8 ½" x 11" paper. NO ARTWORK, PLEASE.

5. Put your name, grade, and school name on the back side of the page of your poem. (No identifying information should appear in the poem or on the poem side of the page.)

6. Fill out the registration form at the bottom of this page. Have your parent or guardian sign it. Cut it on the dotted line and staple it to the upper left-hand corner of your poem.

7. Submit your poem to your teacher (or librarian) to be postmarked by February 7, 2014. Poems may also be submitted at www.myjdl.com.

8. Prizes will be awarded to each grade level, Kindergarten – 12.

9. Poems become the property of the Jackson District Library and WILL NOT BE RETURNED. Please keep a copy of your poem. The Jackson District Library retains the first rights for publication of prize-winning poems.

10. Winning entries will be announced in March 2014.

11. Each first, second, third place and honorable mention winner will receive a prize, a certificate, a ribbon, and a copy of the Young Poets 2014 booklet at the Young Poets Awards program to be held in April 2014. Student authors of the winning entries will be asked to read their poems aloud at the program which will faeture a nationally renowned poet as the guest speaker.


Please PRINT or TYPE, except for parent/guardian signature.

NAME__________________________________________________ GRADE_______________

POEM TITLE____________________________________________________________________

SCHOOL _______________________________________________________________________

TEACHER___________________________________ SCHOOL PHONE_____________________

LIBRARY BRANCH_______________________________________________________________

HOME ADDRESS________________________________________________________________

CITY____________________________ ZIP______________PHONE_______________________

EMAIL ADDRESS: _______________________________________________________________

SIGNATURE_________________________________________ DATE______________________

(Parent or Guardian)

Resources: Websites

Kenn Nesbitt 

Visit this website for lesson plans and tons of poetry fun, including games, discussion forums, and, of course, lots of funny poems!
Kalli Dakos 
Kalli Dakos, “Poet of the School World” is a former teacher and reading specialist who celebrates the school world.  Her website features school themed poems and interactive stories featuring your students.

Teaching Poetry in the Classroom


This website has resources for teaching poetry, poetry theater and poetry activities.

"The #1 Site for Poetry Teachers on the web."

Haiku, Chaiku, God Bless You: Teaching Japanese Poetry Writing at Education World


Here you can read a curriculum article that provides a few hints about teaching Haiku to middle school students in Louisiana.

Similar Website:

2) Haiku Lesson by A. Matson


Outta Ray's Head Poetry Lessons


Here you find a list of articles and links on teaching poetry.

Articles about Children’s Poetry


Articles about Children’s Poetry and additional resources from the Poetry Foundation.

Poetry Writing with Jack Prelutsky


Poetry Writing Workshop with the first U.S. Children’s Poet Laureate, Jack Prelutsky.

Poetry Activities by Jack Prelutsky


Classroom activities to promote poetry and fun!

What Rhymes with Squirrel


This website provides lots of great ideas for students and teachers. Try some of their activities and explore their links.

Teaching Poetry to Students


This is a unit on teaching poetry which gives step by step tips and allows for different learning styles by Emma McDonald.


Plagiarism is a great concern!

If we were to choose a poem as a winning entry and then find out it had been plagiarized, it would be an embarrassment to all concerned. The judges will be reading hundreds of poems and cannot be expected to recognize any poems that may have been copied, so we are asking for your help.

Plagiarism is the act of stealing or copying the ideas or words of others to use as one’s own without giving credit to the original source.

PLEASE explain to your students what plagiarism is and how serious an offense it is. We have to guess that some students do not really understand what plagiarism is and that copying someone else’s work is a serious offense. What they submit should be their own, original creation.

We know that you have a lot of responsibilities and duties, but we would appreciate your assistance in addressing this issue with your students. For our part, if we have questions about the authenticity of any submission, we will check it against the poetry sources and our literature database for possible plagiarism.

Thank you for your support in this important matter.



- a poem where the first letter of each line spells a word that can be read vertically.


- Each line begins with the letters of the alphabet in order; a, b, c, d.


- a ballad is a story song that often has a refrain or chorus and set to music.


- a type of poetry in which the first line has one word, the second has two words describing the first line, the third line shows action with three words, the fourth line has four words that convey feeling, and the fifth line refers to line one.


- A poem about your favorite color. Express your feelings about a single color with analogies or similes or list nouns which are (or remind you of) that color. Another easy form is to use the 5 senses-looks like, sounds like, smells like, tastes like, feels like.


- The Diamante is a form similar to the Cinquain. The text forms the shape of a diamond.


- See the anti-smoking poems at Poetry Teachers http://www.poetryteachers.com/poetclass/lessons/smokepoem.html.

Free Verse

- poetry that is written material freed from paragraph form and has rhythm, but no rhyme.


- the haiku is a three lined Japanese poem about nature. This particular type of poetry has a limit on the amount of syllables you can have for each line. The first line always has five syllables. The second line has seven syllables. The third line has the same amount as the first line.

I Wish

- Each line of the poem begins with the words "I wish" and then you fill in your ideas.


- a limerick is humorous nonsense verse consisting of a triplet and couplet, making it a five line poem. Lines one, two, and five are the triplet and rhyme. The third and forth lines form a rhyming couplet.

Monster Poem

- Describe an imaginary monster. Try to have a theme (food, sports, animals, school subjects etc.)


– Couplets, triplets, and quatrains are made up of two, three, and four lines. These poems are often silly and have a rhythm with the last words in each line rhyming.


The Poetry Panel has provided us with this chart as an example of the criteria that is used for reviewing poetry entries. Poetry contestants may find it helpful to use these when writing their poetry.


  • Aptness of title
  • Impact (Powerful effect)/Universality (Unrestricted fitness or adaptability.) Poems with impact will usually be the finalists from which winners are chosen.
  • Imagery (Mental image as created by imagination or memory. Originality and vivid descriptions through the use of figures of speech.)
  • Suitability (Appropriate to a particular contest, category, occasion, condition, etc.) Enables reader to identify with theme.)
  • Meaning - can be paraphrased. Reader can say or sense the same thing in other words.
  • Basic Theme (the message of the poem)
  • Continuity (uninterrupted development of the theme).
  • Technical Detail (Craftsmanship) Includes aptness to phrase, assonance, alliteration, freshness of rhyme, balance of lines against one another, rhythmic quality, absence of redundancy, economy of words.