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Contact us to let us know you’re interested in participating in Poetry Out Loud.


Feb. 14, 2024
Preliminary-round video submissions due

Feb. 21, 2024
Notification of state qualifiers

March 18, 2024
South Dakota State POL Contest

April 30-May 2, 2024
National Finals in Washington, D.C.

Poetry Out Loud is a FREE program for South Dakota high schoolers (grades 9-12), in public, private, or home school, that encourages students to learn about poetry through memorization and recitation. This program provides avenues for students to master public speaking skills, build self-confidence, learn about their literary heritage, and compete for more than $50,000 in prizes.

As teachers, you have more to do than prepare lesson plans and teach. At Poetry Out Loud, we've developed FREE lesson plans and classroom resources to help complement your busy schedule. This program also satisfies more than half of the NCTE English Language Arts Standards along with many of the Common Core State Standards in Reading and Language.
POL Standards Flyer [linked here]

The schedule and curriculum for Poetry Out Loud can be completed in 2 - 3 weeks, depending on each teacher’s schedule. It DOES NOT require full class periods, so instructors can take it at their own pace. We also have virtual POL lessons that students can access on their own. Check out our Youtube playlist:

Teachers Guide to Poetry Out Loud:  Teacher's Guide (PDF)

Poetry Out Loud in the Classroom online at

Poetry Out Loud Flyer (PDF)

Deadlines Flyer (PDF)

Story Flyer (PDF)

Tips on Reciting

Recording Guide for SD Contests (PDF Guide)

Original Poetry Guide (PDF)

State Champion: $200 and $500 to their school’s library to purchase poetry material
Receives an all-expense paid trip to Washington D.C. with a chaperone to compete in the Poetry Out Loud National finals for a chance to win $20,000!

Runner-Up: $100 and $300 to their school’s library to purchase poetry material

Original Poetry: $100

Contact State POL Coordinator Madison Lukomski

Or Rebecca Cruse
Phone: (605)295-4052
Learn More:

To opt in to POL newsletters containing important deadlines, information, and resources please fill out the following form [linked here] or email