Reader development

The theme for this year's National Poetry Day, on Thursday 2 October, is REMEMBER. Memory, memorising, remembrance... an obvious connection with WWI, but it'll work in other topics from reminiscence groups to revision techniques. Our 8 poem postcards will be delivered to library authorities in early September. As usual, we'll have accompanying pdf posters to download, and ideas for activities for adult reading and creative writing groups. Meanwhile, you can preview the poems and the card designs on our National Poetry Day resources page.

Speaking Volumes: Libraries Advocacy

The Carnegie UK Trust has published a leaflet/poster on ‘Speaking Volumes: The Impact of Public Libraries on Wellbeing’.

It aims to raise awareness about the impact public libraries can have on individual and community wellbeing. It is designed to demonstrate in a clear graphical way the potential of libraries to contribute to wellbeing, and to support the case for the continuing relevance of libraries in the digital age. The content of the leaflet is based on examples of practice in the UK and Ireland, and on published evidence of impact. An online database that compiles the evidence of public libraries’ impact on wellbeing, as well as the leaflet download, can be found on the Carnegie Trust site.

Poetry Prize Shortlists

Poetry shortlists cause many an enjoyable argument, but they do provide a handy spotlight for many a new title.  Take your pick from the current crop of shortlists:

Forward Poetry Prize

One of the two biggest UK poetry prizes - let's count the T S Eliot as the other - with the winner announced just before National Poetry Day. Categories for Best Collection, Best First Collection and Best Single Poem. The annual anthology, published to coincide with the announcement of the winner, always provides excellent reading group material.

Centre for Literacy in Primary Education (CLPE) Poetry Award

An annual shortlist of the best poetry for children, with the winner announced in July. This year's shortlist includes Julia Donaldson (editor), Poems to Perform;  Kathy Henderson, The Dragon with a Big Nose; Joanne Limburg, Bookside Down;  Tony Mitton, Wayland: The Tale of the Smith from the Far North;  and Grace Nichols, Cosmic Disco.

Commonwealth Poets United

While preparations for the Commonwealth Games are beginning to intensify, you can join our Commonwealth Poets United online or in person to explore some of the world's culture that is coming to Scotland.  

Commonwealth Poets is an international exchange between six Scottish poets and poets from six Commonwealth nations:  Canada, India, Jamaica, New Zealand, Nigeria and South Africa.

You can catch up with what they're saying about their journeys round the Commonwealth on the blog

Poetry for the jaded

There's a new blog in town, packed with resources for teaching and engaging through poetry. Our Education blog, Making Makars, is off to a strong start in 2014 with some free teaching resources to download.  

If your own reading palate, or that of your reading group, is feeling a little jaded and in need of a fresh start, bookmark the Making Makars blog and raid it for inspiration.