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Please contact the Contest Coordinator at contests@hslda.org with any questions. We love your feedback!

The Poetry Contest has closed. Check back in February for next contest!

Poetry Contest Guidelines

Submission Dates: March 1st–May 1st
Entries must be postmarked on or before May 1st.

Poem Format

  • Poetry submissions must fit the theme for your age category. Read the themes for this year’s contest.
  • Type your poem single-spaced in at least 10-point font. Double-space between stanzas. Visit our FAQs if you have questions about typing for younger students.
  • Creatively title your poem using whatever font and font size strikes your fancy!
  • Print two copies of your poem.
    • If your poem takes two pages, please do not print double-sided.
    • Please do not staple.
  • You may submit up to 3 different poems per contest.
  • All submissions must be suitable for all audiences. HSLDA reserves the right to reject entries that are gratuitously violent, sexually suggestive, vulgar, or otherwise explicitly offensive.

How to Enter:

Entering is as easy as 1-2-3!

  1. Fill out the Entry Form online to be issued an Entry ID number. Fill out an online Entry Form for each poem. You do not need to print this. You may also download and print an Entry Form to mail in with your poem instead of entering online. In this case, do not write any Entry ID number on your poem.

  2. On both copies of your poem, type or write your Entry ID number on the top right corner and your Age Category number on the top left corner:

  3. Mail your poem and entry fee, payable to HSLDA. Remember to include an entry fee for each poem – they may be combined onto one check. Mail to:

  4. HSLDA
    Attn: Contests
    1 Patrick Henry Circle
    Purcellville, VA 20132


Contest winners will receive a cash congratulations, plus a wonderful transcript booster!

Category 1 2 3
1st Place $150 $250 $500
2nd Place $100 $150 $250
3rd Place $75 $100 $150
Honorable Mentions (2) $50 $75 $100

Where the Contest Profits Go

All contest profits go to our charitable arm, the Home School Foundation, which uses them to provide low-income homeschooling families with access to educational and legal resources to help them continue homeschooling.

To learn about the mission and funds of the Home School Foundation, visit their website at www.HomeSchoolFoundation.org.

Entry Fee:

Multiple entries may be mailed in the same envelope and the multiple entry fees may be included on one check.

Regular Entry Fee $15.00 per poem
HSLDA Member Discounted Entry Fee $10.00 per poem

Please pay via check or money order made payable to "HSLDA" with a note of "Poetry Contest" in the memo line.  Foreign checks not accepted.  Contact the Contest Coordinator if you have any questions regarding payment: contests@hslda.org

Judging and Other Information:

  • Poems will be evaluated by a panel of judges appointed by HSLDA.
  • Poems will be judged on originality of thought, writing style, artistic use of poetic techniques, and adherence to the theme and form requirements. Poetry judging is relatively subjective, but it is our goal through a wide panel of judges to select winning poems that demonstrate excellence in all these areas. For more information, check out Hear It From the Judges.
  • The decision of the judges is final.
  • All contest participants will be notified of the results by email this summer before they are published on the website.
  • By submitting a poem you:
    • grant Home School Legal Defense Association the right to publish all or part of your submission.
    • agree to all rules and the decisions of the judges and sponsors.
  • Home School Legal Defense Association is not responsible for any lost, damaged, misdirected, delayed, mutilated, incomplete, illegible, or postage-due entries or mail.

Interested in sponsoring a contest? ? If you or your company is interested in partnering with us to continue offering this unique opportunity to talented homeschoolers, contact the Contest Coordinator at contests@hslda.org.