CALDWELL, NJ –Pockets at Lincoln Elementary School, Caldwell, got even more of a workout than usual in April, as students school-wide celebrated National Poetry Month with the second annual "Poem in My Pocket Day." The idea for the day was simple: students and teachers wore a pocket around their necks that held a poem and a picture about something they liked, thought was interesting, or made them smile. The poems were unfolded throughout the day in the hallways, classroom reading times, and more.

To make the day even more fun, Lincoln School students and staff decorated their pocket to complement a poem. Then, as students and teachers passed one another in the hallways, lunch room, or playground, they would try to guess the type of poem their friend or colleague carried. More than 250 new poems were shared.

This year, Superintendent Dr. James Heinegg joined in the festivities, sharing some of his favorite poems by Tennessee Williams with classrooms and the occasional student in the hallway.

Superintendent of schools Dr. James Heinegg along with Lincoln Elementary School second grader Kierah Jenkins   Credit: Christine Corliss

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“I know many poems by memory,” said Heinegg. “This was a new way to share the love of poetry.”

Every year, in the month of April, National Poetry Month is celebrated throughout the United States and in various countries worldwide. In 2002, the City of New York created Poem in Your Pocket Day (PIYP) as part of the city's National Poetry Month celebration, and in 2009, the Academy of American Poets took PIYP Day national. Now, each year on PIYP Day, schools, bookstores, libraries, parks, and workplaces share open readings of poems from pockets.

For more information: 
Lincoln School 
Principal: Adam Geher 
18 Crane Street 
Caldwell, NJ 07006 

Principal Adam Geher of Lincoln Elementary School, Caldwell, shares a poem with students in Myra Leven's third grade class   Credit: Christine Corliss