Goodbye to Summer + Hello to the School Year

Catching up on Summer,

Revving up for Fall School Programs!


With In-School and After-School Poetry Residencies launching in October, the Chicago Poetry Center is gearing up for an exciting back-to-school season. After a year of remote programming, we’re eager to engage students in classrooms across the city for weekly in-person poetry lessons. Joining our returning partner schools are six new schools (and counting) that we’re thrilled to engage this school year. We welcome back our returning cohort of teaching artists and four new Poets in Residence as well! Catch up on our team on the Poet in Residence Page.

Chicago Poetry Center student poets have some fun at the dress rehearsal for the Grant Park Music Festival’s Family Night. If you missed it, click here to watch their performance.

While we’re revving up for the start of our Poetry Residencies and the return of the Chicago Poetry Center’s Reading Series, we can’t forget what a fun and poem-filled summer we enjoyed. In collaboration with the Grant Park Music Festival, three CPC student poets read peer-written poems alongside the Grant Park Symphony Orchestra’s Family Night performance of Camille Saint-Saëns’ “Carnival of the Animals.” The Pritzker Pavilion was filled with concert goers young and old, and our student poets illuminated the music with vivid, playful poetry. Check out our video of the evening here.

Poet in Residence Timothy David Rey facilitates a poetry workshop in Ogden Park at SummerDance.
With support from the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE), CPC brought poetry to the dance party at two community parks. As a part of SummerDance in the Parks, CPC Poet in Residence Timothy David Rey led a walking poetry workshop at Englewood’s Ogden Park and Roseland’s Palmer Park.


At Palmer Park, local student poet Maya R. capped the workshop and kicked off the dancing by performing two original poems she wrote during her CPC poetry residency at WEB DuBois Elementary.


For the Chicago Poetry Center, this summer’s special events and collaborations were a great reminder of how poetry stays with the students in our Poetry Residencies – even beyond the school year. We’re grateful for their powerful poems, their energetic performances, and the enthusiasm with which they shared both over the summer. We can’t wait to return to their classrooms this fall.


Attention Schools: Residencies Available!

Interested joining our new and returning partner schools in bringing poetry to your classrooms? We have Poetry Residencies available for new school partners. Our 20-week In-School or After-School Residencies include customized lessons by a Poet in Residence, student assessment tools, and the opportunity for participating students to have their poetry published. Visit our website to learn more or email to reserve your Residencies today.

Did you catch us at the Printers Row Lit Fest?

We met so many readers, writers, educators, librarians, and parents at the festival. If you weren’t able to join us, you can still snag our popular broadsides and vintage posters on our website. Plus, be on the lookout for an email about the Fall launch of our Reading Series next month!

Thank you for supporting poetry in schools,

after school, and beyond.




“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.