Artist residency at MCHS kicks off Poetry Out Loud competition
PADUCAH — Students in 23 McCracken County High School classes received special instruction this week from artist Kathi E.B. Ellis, of Louisville, to help them prepare to compete in Poetry Out Loud. Poetry Out Loud is a national poetry recitationcompetition created by the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and the Poetry Foundation. The competition is administered in partnership with state agencies, and in Kentucky, the Kentucky Arts Council awards Poetry Out Loud grants to school districts. McCracken County Public Schools received the grant award for this year, marking the fourth consecutive year of receiving the grant. Each participating school receives an artist residency and the opportunity for the school champion to attend the state competition with a chaperone. The statechampion goes on to the national competition in Washington, D.C.
The grant pays for Ellis to teach 23 classes and groups ranging from English literature and theatre classes to the MCHS Debate Team and Forensics Club. Ellis, who is amember of the VSA Kentucky Artist Roster of teaching artists and of the American Alliance for Theatre and Education, combines elements of poetry, history and theatre instruction to prepare students to recite and perform works of poetry. Participating MCHS students will select, memorize and recite a poem before a panel of judges in a culminating school wide competition in late January or early February. For more information contact Adam Shull, District Grant Writer, at 270-564-4485.