Inter-School Poetry Finals
Inter-School Poetry Finals

Poetry By Heart at ASP

The Poetry By Heart finals took place at ASP this week, where students from 14 schools from around the Paris region competed to perform the best poetry recitation. In addition to our ASP students, the College Sevigné, Collège & Lycée Camille Sée, the Ecole Jeannine Manuel (EJM) Lille, EJM Paris, Ecole Massillon, Ermitage International School, the Institut de La Tour, Institut Notre Dame, the International School of Paris, the Lycé International de Saint Germain-en-Laye (American Section), Marymount International School, and SIS Paris Ouest all sent their grade-level finalists for this epic poetry face-off. Organized by Mr. Chioini and Ms. Bruneau, 38 students, 10 judges, and three MCs came together for this exciting event that truly goes beyond our ASP community to connect with English-language institutions in the region.

Poetry By Heart Introduction

Originally conceived in England as a national poetry recitation competition, Poetry By Heart was brought to France by the English Language Schools Association (ELSA), of which ASP is a member. Most of the 17 ELSA schools have competed since 2001, and shared the hosting duties in addition to the joys of participating in the competition. Students from Middle School through Upper School are welcome to compete. The finalist from each grade level across ELSA continue on to determine one finalist for France, who travels to London to compete.

PBH competitors

Students select a poem from an anthology, and prepare their recitations before the competition. Students' performances are ranked across four categories: voice, performance, understanding, and accuracy.

PBH participants

This year, ASP students Matteo K., Sophia W., and Gabriella I. F. represented ASP in the competition. Gabriella performed Matilda by Hilaire Belloc , and elegantly represented our Grade 6 poetry lovers. Sofia gave a strong showing for Grade 7 in her recitation of Casabianca, by Felicia Hemans.

PBH Participants

Matteo took The Language of Cat by Rachel Rooney to new artistic heights in the Grade 8 room, despite another competitor also performing the same poem (double selections often take place, and three students in the same grade performed Jabberwocky by Lewis Carroll).

PBH Participants

Thank you to all of our coordinators, Ms. Bruneau and Mr. Chioini, our student and faculty judges (including Ms. Thompson!), and the dedicated teachers who helped their students prepare to perform!


We want to congratulate the overall winner, Alice, for her performance of Casabianca, the second place winner, Eden, for a tremendous showing with Jabberwocky, and Luke, for his recitation of The Listeners by Walter de la Mare. Well done to all of the participants! See you next year for another round of Poetry By Heart.

Poetry By Heart Awards