New Mexico State Poetry Society Children.s Poetry ProjectThe New Mexico State Poetry Society (NMSPS) embarked on a number of educational projects involving children and poetry in 2010. The Albuquerque Chapter, under the guidance of Larry Castillo-Wilson and then President Bonnie Rucobo, began the Children.s Poetry Project designed to inspire elementary-aged children to write poetry. John J. Candelaria took over the project in 2013 and became the Project Leader for Children.s Poetry in 2015.
Goals of the Children.s Poetry Project are:
- To inspire and excite children about poetry
- To help children learn how to write poetry
- To encourage children to write about their diverse backgrounds
- To inspire children to love poetry that will last a lifetime
In 2011 three presentations were scheduled at Albuquerque libraries. The presentations included the Los Griegos Library, Albuquerque.s Main Library, and the Lomas-Tramway Library. Ten presentations at Alvarado Elementary School in the North Valley began a commitment to bring a poet to each classroom. From the school years 2011 to 2015, the Children.s Poetry Project has been concentrated at Alvarado Elementary School. In collaboration with Alison O.Leary, Alvarado Elementary School Librarian and Intervention Teacher, the poetry project has grown so each class at Alvarado had their poems published in a book with pictures and drawings by the children. Alison.s efforts were acknowledged on April 26, 2015 when she was awarded Honorary Membership to the NMSPS at the NMSPS State Convention and Annual General Meeting.
Future plans include expanding the project to another school and to develop presentations at different New Mexico libraries.