The student news publication of Bryant High School in Bryant, Arkansas

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The student news publication of Bryant High School in Bryant, Arkansas

Prospective Online

The student news publication of Bryant High School in Bryant, Arkansas

Prospective Online

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Students prepare for Poetry Out Loud Competition

Freshman student Ray Renuard practices reciting his poems for the Poetry Out Loud Competition | photo tony garibay

The freshman Poetry club sponsor, Caroline Walton, a freshman English teacher, will be holding a competition for students who want to compete in the Poetry Out Loud Competition in the library. On Feb. 1 at 3:30 p.m. there will be an open-mic for students who want to share their own poems, music or other writing.

The Competition will consist of students from all grades who all have one thing in common, a love of poetry.

“I’ve always loved poetry and I think any organization that gives kids the chance to read poetry and write poetry and get feedback about it is a good thing,” Walton said.

The students compete by having two or more people recite poems chosen prior to the competition. At the school competition, they have two poems and one of the poems has to be less than 25 lines and the other has to be previous to the 20th century. The state competition has to have three, and that rule still applies.

“It’s not really acting,” junior Robann Brown said. “It’s more using facial expressions and your mental state of mind about the poem.”

The website is www.poetryoutloud.org and students have to pick the poems they recite from it. On that site there’s a list of poems that the students have to choose from to memorize, perform and recite.

“I go into Mrs. Walton’s every day at lunch and practice,” freshman Ray Renuard said. “Poetry is something that I’m good at and if I manage to get through then I could possibly get a scholarship.”

Once the competition is over and the champion is decided, after the maximum time limit of three hours, the champion will travel to the state contest in Little Rock.

“When I’m acting, she gives me advice on how to make my form, my arms and facial expressions, more or less drastic,” Brown said. “It’s like you’re talking with someone.”

Walton has been coaching the students who are serious about the competition. The students recite poems of choice and she coaches them to make their acting form better.

“I try to sit down and talk about the emotion of the poem and what made the students choose it,” Walton said, “because it’s hard to have a good recitation of the poem without that emotion behind it.”

If the student wins the state competition, March 2, he or she will go to Washington D.C. on April 28 through the 30.

“There’s a possibility that the winner will win about $20,000,” Walton said. “Also the school receives a stipend of $500 for poetry books. There’s more prizes as well, but that’s the big one.”

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