Wednesday, January 16, 2013

IWC PoPPs Up in Northwest Indiana Schools

This is the third year that Indiana Writers' Consortium has brought its Power of Poetry Project (PoPP) into Northwest Indiana schools. The project started in one school during the 2010-2011 school year and expanded to four schools for 2011-2012. This year PoPP is serving the 4th and 5th grades in eight schools that are located in Gary, East Chicago, Crown Point, Lowell, and Winfield.

PoPP kicked off with presentations to the fourth and fifth grade classes and their teachers. The pictures show IWC members explaining the program at Williams Elementary School in Gary (above) and Timothy Ball Elementary School in Crown Point (below).

PoPP is designed to build creativity by bringing poetry into the classroom. It does this in two ways. First, IWC provides teaching resources and suggestions for using poetry to meet educational standards. Second, PoPP encourages student to write poems and participate in a contest, with the potential to see their work in print.

Each student who participates by submitting a poem or artwork receives a lapel pin, and any student whose poem or artwork is published in the PoPP book receives a copy. (The final picture shows last year's book.) First, second, and third prizes are also awarded at each grade level.

PoPP is funded by a grant from the Crown Point Community Foundation and a grant from the Lake County Community Fund of the Legacy Foundation as well as by individual and corporate donations. The most valuable resource, however, is the volunteer time and effort put in by the PoPP Committee, consisting of of Katherine Flotz, Jackie Huppenthal, Sandra Nantais, and Judy Whitcomb, and by the PoPP judges, headed by Tom Spencer.

IWC is an IRS Section 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization whose mission is to inspire and build a community of creative writers.

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