2nd Annual Blackout Poetry Week April 20-24th

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Join us for Blackout Poetry Week

April 20th-24th 

Use #blackoutpoets on Twitter and Instagram

Fellow teacher and poetry enthusiast Jason Stephenson and I would like to once again invite all educators, students and authors to help celebrate poetry in the classroom by participating in a worldwide Blackout Poetry Event on Twitter and Instagram. You can find more information about how cool Blackout Poetry is by going herehere and here.  

Here are some examples of Blackout Poetry. Stock up on markers and get creative!






We’d love to see you do a blackout poem of a page from your favorite novel, a newspaper article or something lying around your home. Students from all over the world will be participating and sharing their love of words.

Please contact @blackoutpoets, @lesleymosher and @teacherman82 for more information.


Friday’s Blackout Poems


A BIG THANK YOU to all of the Blackout Poets out there that joined in and Blackout Poetry Week! I’m here one last time to recognize some stellar student work and  Jason Stephenson will wrap things up tomorrow, so be on the look out for his post.

 Mr. Pollock’s students submitted more poems today,  and like I said yesterday, they are truly a great example of a #blackoutpoet classroom!  If you haven’t already, check out the #blackoutpoets hashtag to see them all and use them in your own classroom as stellar examples! Here are a few that really stood out today. I can’t say thanks enough to Mr. Pollock and his student poets for participating!


Poet of the Day #1 @Priellloucol

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Poet of the Day #2 @isobelsteenrod

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Poet of the Day # 3  @GeorgeMerhoff

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This HS history class made an ebook from #blackoutpoets based on Paine’s Common Sense. Yeah, it’s pretty amazing, @KerryHawk02 Thank you for sharing.

Thomas Paine Student Blackout Poetryphoto

Thanks to @Maurice’sMonkeys from Whitehorse,Yukon for posting this cool blackout poem today!

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And last, but not least, I wanted to give a quick shout out to my own middle school student #blackoutpoets, who worked so hard this week on their poems. I am one very proud teacher!

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Thursday’s Blackout Poems


It’s Thursday and Blackout Poetry Week is in full swing! I’m here to recognize some stellar student #blackoutpoets from Twitter and Instagram! I’ll be featuring another set of poems tomorrow and Jason Stephenson will wrap things up on Saturday.

We had so many great blackout poems today that it was very tough to choose only a few.



We had a bunch of blackout poems submitted today from Mr. Pollock’s students and they were all creative and inspiring. Check out the #blackoutpoets hashtag to see them all and use them in your own classroom as stellar examples! Here are a few that really stood out. Thanks to Mr. Pollock and his student poets for participating!


Poet of the Day #1 @_spears14

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Poet of the Day #2 @FoyeNathaniel

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Poet of the Day # 3  @caroline_cox123

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Poet of the Day #4  @paigemccllellan_

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Coach Marsee’s #blackoutpoets focused on creating different moods with their blackout poems. The results were fantastic!


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This poem was submitted by @wordsartmagic and is pretty amazing. Thank you for sharing, Gina!

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It’s Blackout Poetry Week!

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It’s finally here! If you haven’t heard, April 7th – 12th is blackout poetry week on Instagram and Twitter. Jason Stephenson and I will be co-hosting the festivities and we hope that you and your students will join us! Please use the hashtag #blackoutpoets throughout the week and check out other poems from all across the world! Follow our Blackout Poetry Twitter Account to see examples and to stay up to date on all the action during the week.

Each day we will be awarding a “Poet of the Day” in the following categories: elementary, middle school, high school, teacher and author,  and posting them on our blogs. “Poet of the Day” lists will be on Jason’s blog on Monday, Wednesday and Saturday and here on Literacy Love on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday.  Feel free to use the blackout poets classroom and school badges on your own blogs. If you do, please share your classroom or personal blog link in the comments section so others can read your poems.

Have a great week blackout poets!

blackoutpoetofthedayblackoutpoetsclassroom  blackoutpoetsschool

Blackout Poetry in the Classroom

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Backstory – Last fall I had an idea revolving around the success I’ve had with blackout poetry in my middle school reading intervention classes. I contacted my Twitter friend Jason Stephenson who also has used blackout poetry in his high school English classes with great results and asked if he’d be interested in co hosting a Twitter wide blackout poetry event. Fast forward to today and we are happy to announce…

 our first Blackout Poetry Week will be held April 7-11th!

Now, to the good stuff…

If you don’t know a lot about blackout poetry, I suggest you check out Jason’s awesome post here. Basically, here’s what you need: enough Sharpies for your entire class, willing students and texts to use for their poems. Anything works, and I have used newspaper and magazine articles, random pages from discarded books and even texts that students have already read.

I like to show the blackout poetry guru Austin Kleon’s work as a starting point before we dive in. This time lapse video captures students’ attention and they are very curious about this activity.

I work with struggling readers and this is something that, with a little practice, they really have success with. Poetry is a tricky temptress – students are drawn to the idea of poetry, but it is scary and elusive and hard to wrap their heads around. Blackout poetry is safe, cool and very, very creative. The visual and text combination is awesome! There’s no doubt that students are definitely doing some higher level thinking and I’ve seen even the toughest critics (aka 7th grade boys) dive in. Truth be told, the sharpies don’t hurt either.

Here are some examples of some blackout poems from last spring:






This is my personal favorite. Eighth graders had recently finished reading a short story version of Flowers for Algernon and Noah pretty much captured the entire beginning of the book with his poem! Love it!

Other Ideas…

  • I’d really like to copy various sections of a read aloud or a text that students have all read in their ELA class and have them create a series of blackout poems that capture the mood, actions or development of a particular character throughout the book.
  • Old Encyclopedias would be an interesting text to use too. It would be fun to use pages containing outdated information and see what students come up with to use for their poems.
  • Younger students will definitely enjoy blackout poetry and this would be a great way to celebrate learning new words.
  • Another cool idea for older students would be to use banned books for this activity!
  • I’d also like to have students get a little more creative with the style of their poems and create a picture or design that fit with the subject or emotions of the subject.

Kind of like these…

blackout-poetry angela wallace

Angela Watson, http://goo.gl/fIOzD

pirates black out poem

Tyler Ducas, http://goo.gl/sVA5R9

tragedy black out poem

Sue Olson, http://suzenart.blogspot.com/

Aren’t these amazing? Jason and I hope you’ll join us in April for Blackout Poetry week. Follow Blackout Poets on Twitter for more examples you can share with your students and more updates and reminders about this worldwide event!