By this point in the school year, my kids know not to expect the sorts of lunchbox love notes they got from me daily in September. But there are a few days on the calendar that inspire me to scribble something special to surprise them: Valentine’s Day (of course), St. Patrick’s Day (a must in our Irish-American household), and Poem in Your Pocket Day.

Poem in Your Pocket Day (today!) is my favorite part of National Poetry Month each April. The idea is that everyone should carry a poem in their pocket to read in quiet moments or share with friends. Because, who among us couldn’t use a little poetry in our days?

Even if you’ve missed the boat today, The American Academy of Poets has tons of smart ideas for ways to celebrate National Poetry Month all month long. Two suggestions from the site that I love: chalk a poem on the sidewalk (great Instagram photo opp, right?) and try a poet’s favorite food. Overall, there are just so many ways to get even the most skeptical kids excited about poetry and bring more of it into their reading repertoire.

Ideas for getting kids involved with National Poetry Month: Write a favorite verse in sidewalk chalk

Chalk sidewalk poem from “Gong Strikes” by Miriam Sagan; photo submitted to by Hannah M


While you’re on the site, print out a letter-sized version of the 2016 poster (partially shown at top) free. Hang it on a wall or just fold it up; it’s the right size to fit into a lunchbox, a briefcase, or even a pocket.

Visit The American Academy of any time of year, but especially in April, which is National Poetry Month.