This class is full. To be added to a waitlist, please email [email protected].


Featuring celebrated poets and educators Willie Perdomo, Yesenia Montilla, and Laura Da’

Join a national community of educators seeking valuable tools and resources for opening doors to poetry in the classroom.

This three-session, virtual intensive course offers high-school English teachers the opportunity to:

  • Learn directly from celebrated contemporary poets
  • Participate in a generative poetry writing workshop
  • Develop fresh lesson plans utilizing resources from the Academy of American Poets’ extensive digital archive, including poems, audio recordings, essays and photographs.

All sessions will be facilitated by poet, educator and scholar Erika Luckert.


Session 1: Reading Contemporary Poetry, with visiting poet Willie Perdomo

Tue, Aug 6, 2024, 10am-12:30pm EDT
Participants practice ways of reading and engaging with a poem, with an emphasis on creative response, pleasure, and play. Teachers will gain confidence in their own skills as readers of poetry and learn strategies for engaging their students in reading poetry.

Willie PerdomoWillie Perdomo is the author of The Crazy Bunch and The Essential Hits of Shorty Bon Bon, among others. A finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award, he currently teaches English at Phillips Exeter Academy. He served as New York State Poet and received an Academy of American Poets Laureate Fellowship. 




Session 2: Reading to Write: Poetry Workshop, with visiting poet Yesenia Montilla  

Wed, Aug 7, 2024, 10am-12:30pm EDT
Participants practice writing their own poems, inspired by the work of the visiting poets. This generative workshop will focus on creating and sharing work, rather than critique. Teachers will gain experience in writing their own poetry and develop strategies for using contemporary poetry to prompt student writing.

Yesenia MontillaYesenia Montilla is the author of Muse Found in a Colonized Body, which was nominated for an NAACP Image Award, and The Pink Box, which was long-listed for the PEN Open Book Award. She is the recipient of fellowships from CantoMundo and the New York Foundation for the Arts.




Session 3: Designing Poetic Lesson Plans, with visiting poet Laura Da’

Thu, Aug 8, 2024, 10am-12:30pm EDT
Drawing on the previous two sessions, participants discuss ways of teaching contemporary poetry in their own curricular context. Teachers will have time to draft and share lesson plans to use in their classrooms this fall.

Laura DaPoet and teacher Laura Da’ is the author of Instruments of the True Measure and Tributaries,  which received an American Book Award from the Before Columbus Foundation. She is the poet laureate of Redmond, Washington, and received an Academy of American Poets Laureate Fellowship.