We’re on a Mission 🚀 Help Support Poetry Programs for over 2,500 students! As we head towards the end of the calendar year, and launch our annual campaign, the Chicago Poetry Center team is […]

Students read Gwendolyn Brooks’ classic poem, ‘We Real Cool’ before crafting their own ‘cool’ poems using their own words and ideas for what is cool, rhyme repetition, and the short form. We Real Cool […]

All the best poets know that the real poetry comes with revision. So it felt fitting that for our halfway point, Waters poets revised old or recently-written poems. First we talked about food, and […]

The students made stanzas as rooms within which to fill their dreaming selves and wishes. Mr. Charmelo, 7th grade, 1st period The Wisher by Alexis V. I wish to the intelligence like Albert Einstein. […]

In “Pokeberries,” Ruth Stone recalls members of her extended family—mostly women—and how they (positively) impacted her life. Her brief yet potent poem is packed with vivid details and initiated many lively and fascinating conversations. […]

This week the young Viking writers explored reportage/jounralistic poetry. They read Muriel Rukeyser’s “Poem (I lived in the first century of world wars) and Mark Jarman’s “Ground Swell.” The students were then tasked with […]

During our 6th sessions, Swift students took turns reading – in both Spanish and English – the poem “Same Green Fate” by Francisco X. Alarcón. It begins: “let’s listen to/ the green voice of […]

On the first day of our 6th Grade poetry residency at Sayre Elementary, we went over what poetry is, as well as the poetic terms “line” and stanza.” We then read a poem by […]

On the first day of our 5th Grade poetry residency at Sayre Elementary, we went over what poetry is, as well as the poetic terms “line” and stanza.” We then read a poem by […]

In Ms. Icho’s Kindergarten, we learned some 4th grade ideas today! We talked about similes, and how we can compare two TOTALLY different things. The kids put on their big kid thinking caps and […]

It’s hard to believe we’re near the halfway point of our Waters residency, but we are! For the ninth week, we talked about erasure poems, also known as blackout poems. I found out that […]

Each of our names tell a story about us, and last week Sayre’s 8th graders dug deep into their origins. Some of us are named after loved ones, and others have names inspired by […]

Sayre’s 8th grade students had a lot to say about poetry. After reading Jamila Woods’ “Blk Girl Art,” we spent time crafting our own works about what poetry means to us. Check out some […]

Last week at South Loop Poetry Club, we looked over the various sensory poems we wrote in class together. Across our poems, we used sights, textures, sounds, tastes, and smells to describe our experiences […]

What do an elephant and a mouse have in common? What dessert do your eyes look like? For this week’s session we talked about comparisons and how contrasting different things can help our writing […]

The Chicago Poetry Center is now in its 7th year as Chicagoland Regional Host Organization for the national youth poetry competition, Poetry Out Loud. Poetry Out Loud is a collaborative project of the Illinois […]

Students montaged their experience of their gender using rich imagery informed by the senses. Ms. Hernandez, 7th grade, 1st period Sweet Girl by Kimberly G. Girl looks sparkling like shimmer. Girl feels cold as […]

Ms. Widman High School Creative Writing This week the young Viking writers explored love poems by reading Matthew Olzmann’s “Mountain Dew Commercial Disguised as a Love Poem” and Kim Addonizio’s “My Heart”. The writers […]

Jordan Jace’s “I want” was the poem we examined this week. Unlike the prior selection, Jace’s effort reads as ‘normal,’ with its standard grammar and lack of blank space, and incorporates repetition as a […]

The Chicago Poetry Center presents BLUE HOUR, a free, public monthly in-person reading series and generative writing workshop hosted and facilitated by Marty McConnell.  *** HEALTH & SAFETY NOTE: We are requesting that attendees mask […]

This week for poetry club at Clissold we focused on writing poems about ourselves. We read Leslie Reese’s poem I Am and talked about stanzas and lines and how to use them in our […]

This week we got started on poems using personification as a device in our poems. We read “A Lament” by Percy Bysshe Shelley and talked about how we could give human qualities to things […]

One of my favorite things to write about with students is food! It provides such a great way to engage all of our senses and bring a poem to life. We got started by […]

Students worked on comparisons, capturing resemblances both inside and outside the classroom and drew how they felt about object relationships. Ms. Hernandez, 7th grade 1st Period Randomly? by Enrique P. A Chromebook is great […]

Students read the poem, ‘Thought Machine’ by Laura Mucha from the book Being Me; they then wrote about their thoughts using metaphors and similes. Lesson Note: “I learned that the only way to get […]

Last week at South Loop Poetry Club, we finished our Senses chapter by talking about scents. A lot of poetry, and a lot of humanity, does not acknowledge scent except as supplement, especially to […]


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“Writing poetry makes me feel like I can see myself, like I can see my reflection, but not in a mirror, in the world. I write and I know I can be reflected.”
-Oscar S.

“Writing poetry makes me feel free.”
-Buenda D.

“Writing poetry is like your best friend.”
-Jessica M.