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Western Libraries

Poetry for Children & Teens: Spoken Word

To provide and preserve a comprehensive collection of poetry written and published for children and teens, birth through age 20, from 1960 on.


Brave New Voices
Brave New Voices (BNV) was created by Youth Speaks, Inc in 1998 after the inaugural Youth Speaks Teen Poetry Slam in San Francisco—the first poetry slam dedicated to youth in the nation’s history. Since that time, Brave New Voices has grown to represent youth from all across the United States. BNV also features International teams from Canada, Africa, the Polynesian Islands, and Europe, making it the largest and most diverse ongoing spoken word event in the world.

Edutopia - Kids Feel the Power of Poetry
Global Writes, ( is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to promote literacy, communication and collaboration among young people through the integration of performing arts and technology resources. The organization leads or assists in the development and support of projects and programs with local school districts, independent schools, government agencies and other nonprofit groups. In our programs and projects, we work to create opportunities for students to develop as creative writers, and to share their original pieces in workshops and through performance. We promote the use of a variety of digital technologies, including videoconferencing and web collaboration tools to provide venues for sharing and performing that bridge the boundaries of school, community, region and even nation

Poetry Outloud
The National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation have partnered with U.S. state arts agencies to support Poetry Out Loud, a contest that encourages the nation's youth to learn about great poetry through memorization and recitation. This program helps students master public speaking skills, build self-confidence, and learn about their literary heritage.