15 Best Poetry Websites for Kids, Teens, Teachers, and Classrooms
Whether you’re celebrating National Poetry Month, launching a poetry unit, or just looking for poems to share with kids or teens in the classroom, these sites are for you. These poetry websites have selections for readers and learners of all ages. Many of them include resources for teaching poetry too. Take a look at one or all of them to find what you need.
Best for: Elementary teachers and students
Kenn Nesbit was named Children’s Poet Laureate by the Poetry Foundation in 2013. Here, you’ll find lots of his wonderful work, including a roundup of his popular funny poems. Search by subject, grade level, topic, and more, plus find poetry writing lessons and activities to use in your classroom.
Best for: Pre-K-8 students and teachers
The founders of this site believe the best way to connect with poetry is to hear its authors read it out loud. They’ve collected thousands of recordings of poets giving readings of their poems and curated this special collection just for kids. There’s also a section just for teachers to help them use the recordings with their students.
Best for: Middle and high school students and teachers
Each week, this site publishes a new poem with short commentary to help readers delve deeper. Poems focus on the American experience, and you can search by region or topics that speak to different aspects of American life.
Best for: K-6 teachers and students
Shel Silverstein’s poems have been delighting kids for decades. This website provides learning resources for teachers to use when teaching his poems in their classrooms. Kids will find videos, printables, and wallpapers to enjoy and share.
Best for: K-12 language arts teachers
If you’re a language arts teacher, you probably already have this site on your favorites list. Their poetry section is terrific, offering lesson plans, activities, professional development, and blogs. Search for resources by grade level, and try student interactives on haikus, acrostics, and more.
Best for: Anyone looking for new or favorite poems to read
Published authors meet amateurs on this massive database. It’s one of the largest poetry websites on the web, where you’ll find well-known poems, poet biographies, and self-published poetry by current writers. The site can be a little ad-heavy, and it’s not necessarily the easiest to navigate. But if you’re looking for poems on a certain topic, a search here is a good place to start.
Best for: Anyone looking to explore poetry past and present
The Poetry Foundation is linked to Poetry magazine, which has been around since 1912. The site is comprehensive, with poems, poem guides, audio poems, and dozens of curated collections. You’ll also find articles, essays, interviews, and more resources for teaching and learning about poetry. With more than 46,000 poems, this is one of those poetry websites you’ll definitely want to bookmark.
Best for: Anyone searching for well-known poets or poems
The name says it all! If you’re looking for a specific poem, you’ll likely find it here. You can also get biography information about poets, as well as quotes and a bibliography. With more than 630 poets represented, this is a robust database for finding poetry to use in the classroom.
Best for: Upper elementary through high school students and teachers
PBS offers short videos on 12 well-known poems, including Emma Lazarus’s “The New Colossus” (“Give me your tired, your poor … “). Learn about the poets and hear interpretations from athletes, authors, musicians, politicians, and others. They’ll help kids make a stronger connection to these powerful poems. (Plus, teachers can assign these videos directly to Google Classroom.)
Best for: Older students and teachers looking for modern poems and poetry
This site is both a source to find modern poetry (they currently have 270 poems available) as well as a place to learn about modern poetry itself. Teachers will find the section on modern poetry schools helpful. The site also offers criticism of many of its poems, useful for helping students understand meaning and importance.
Best for: Older readers interested in discovering new poetry from around the world
Broaden your horizons by exploring poetry from nations around the globe. Founded in the Netherlands, this site features Dutch poets but has poems from dozens of countries in multiple languages. For foreign language poems, you can choose to have them translated or read them as written.
Best for: Middle and high school teachers, students, and libraries
This national arts education program encourages kids to get excited about poetry by sponsoring recitation competitions for high schoolers. Their website offers an excellent database of poems that are appropriate for kids and teens, so even if you’re not interested in competing, you’ll find this site valuable. You can watch videos and listen to audio of previous competition winners, and find a selection of lesson plans for teaching poetry.
Best for: K-12 teachers and students interested in teaching, learning, and writing contemporary poetry
Maintained by the Academy of American Poets, Poets.org is a place to find contemporary American poetry and poets. They sponsor National Poetry Month and Poem-a-Day, which publishes new poems each weekday. Teachers will discover a wealth of resources, including lesson plans and programs like Teach This Poem.
Best for: High schools students and teachers
Former Poet Laureate Billy Collins designed Poetry 180 to make it easy for high school students and teachers to find a new poem to explore every day of the school year. For another cool Poet Laureate project students will enjoy, check out Robert Pinsky’s Favorite Poem site.
Best for: Aspiring teen poets
Looking for a safe place for teens to share their writing and learn from others? Teen Ink is it. Teens can post any kind of writing, and their poetry section is very active. Students will also find information on summer programs and colleges for aspiring poets and authors and contests to enter.
Did we miss one of your favorite poetry websites? Come share on the WeAreTeachers HELPLINE group on Facebook.
by Terry Heick Among the biggest changes in modern academic standards is the shift in the burden of general…