The Online Edition of the Annandale High School Newspaper.

The A-Blast

The Online Edition of the Annandale High School Newspaper.

The A-Blast

The Online Edition of the Annandale High School Newspaper.

The A-Blast

Senior wins Poetry Out Loud competition


Students and teachers gathered in the auditorium on Dec. 7 during Atom Time to watch the annual Poetry Out Loud National Recitation Contest. The competitors were judged based on accuracy and delivery of the poem.

Thuku was announced as the winner at the end of the day and received his $100 award from Mathis on Dec. 10.

The judges were social studies teacher Katherine Gould, history teacher John Hawes, English teacher Bill Maglisceau, guidance counselor Carrie Schaefer and AHS parent Emily Slough.

Freshman Annie Stout, sophomore Sarah Metzel, junior Katherine Ross and seniors Christine Nguyen and Moses Thuku recited two poems each.

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“I felt that the students could have put more emotion in their performances,” senior Andy Riddle said. “Moses was my favorite performer though because he did show emotion.”

Competitors were required to choose two poems from a list on a website. One of the poems had to be less than or equal to 25 lines, and the other had to be written before the 20th century.

“I chose to participate because it’s a great experience and I love poetry,” senior Moses Thuku said. “Choosing the poem came naturally to me, and I recited it morning and night.”

“I consider myself good at memorizing poetry, so I saw this as a good opportunity,” freshman Annie Stout said. “My brother-in-law is an English major, so I worked with him and my father to pick poems from the website.”

The winner of the school contest will win $100. He or she will then move on to regionals, states and nationals if successful at each competition. The prize for nationals is $20,000.

“I enjoy poetry and write some myself, so I thought this would be a fun experience,” sophomore Steve Aderton said. “I will possibly compete next year, but I consider myself more of a Filament Coffeehouse performer.”

“I was overall very proud of the students that competed today,” English teacher Catherine Gibson said.

To prepare for the contest, Gibson and English teacher Kathleen Mathis held a few meetings before the competition to have the students run through their poems and work on tone and performance. A dress rehearsal was held a few days ago to allow the students to prepare onstage.


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Senior wins Poetry Out Loud competition