Poetry Object Conditions & FAQ
Thank you for participating in Poetry Object, Australasia’s largest free poetry-writing competition for young people, with over $10,000 in prizes to be won! Poetry Object ignites imaginations by inviting young writers (Years 3-10) and their teachers to create poems inspired by treasured, curious or talismanic objects.
Red Room Poetry program materials are copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study, research, criticism or review as permitted under the Copyright Act 1968, no part may be reproduced by any process without permission. Enquiries should be made to Red Room Poetry.
All Poetry Object materials copyright © The Red Room Company and poem authors.
Phone: (+61 2) 9319 5090
Conditions of Entry
- Poetry Object is open for submissions from young people (Years 3-10) and their teachers, across Australia and New Zealand. All types of mainstream schooling systems are eligible to register, as well as home schools, GAT programs, special needs groups, alternative education and individual young writers.
- Submissions are welcomed from individuals outside the above parameters for year level and location, and will be published in our digital library but will not be eligible for prizes.
- Explore our curriculum-aligned learning resource for stimulus activities, examples of special object poems, and editing guides to spark inspiration and help develop your poem.
- There are three age categories for prizes: primary, secondary and teacher. In each category, several prizes will be awarded (first place, highly commended, etc.). There is also a multimedia installation category, open to classes or groups.
- Prize details are here.
- Entries are judged anonymously by an external professional poet, and the judge’s decision is final.
- Entries must be the writer’s original work of no more than 20 lines, and must be in some way inspired by a curious, special or talismanic object. Further quality criteria for poem entries is in the learning resource.
- Poem submissions are to be made via our weblink (sent via email to educators when they register). Submissions can be made by educators or students. Entries can include images of the writer and/or their object, or a drawing of the object (please do not include images taken from online sources, where you do not own the copyright).
- For multimedia installation submissions, email some images, a title and a brief description of your installation to email@example.com.
- Submissions are free.
- All submissions will be read by our team and published in our digital library. When poems are published, a link will be emailed to educators for checking. By submitting, you give Red Room Poetry permission to quote excerpts of your poem in our external communications (surnames of young people will not be published).
How can I register?
Register for Poetry Object.
What happens after I register?
You’ll receive an email within a few days from our team, containing key dates, the submissions link and other important information. When registered, download the learning resource and start writing poems!
Can multiple teachers / classes from one school register?
Yes! Just email firstname.lastname@example.org with additional teachers’ names and email addresses. We will add them to your school’s profile in our internal systems.
I’m with a home school / non-school education group / GAT program etc. Can I be involved?
Yes! We welcome registrations and submissions from all educational contexts, as well as from individual young people. If your writing environment is outside of mainstream schooling, register by emailing your name, phone number and organisation (if relevant) to email@example.com.
When does Poetry Object open and close?
In 2019, submissions open 15 April and close 27 September (5pm AEST).
Do I have to use the learning resource before submitting my poem?
The learning resource is not compulsory, but we recommend that you do use it! It has a trove of quality criteria, activities, writing tips, special object examples, poem examples and more! Download the learning resource here.
How do I enter?
Submissions are online, and the link to our submissions portal is emailed to educators when they register. Both educators and young people can use the submissions portal.
Where can I see my submitted poems online?
All submissions are published in our digital library, and when your submissions have been published you will be sent an email link from our team.
Who owns the copyright to submitted poems?
Poem authors retain copyright over their work. By submitting your poems, you give Red Room Poetry permission to publish them in our digital library and to use excerpts of them in our external communications.
How does Red Room Poetry maintain student privacy when publishing poems?
We do not publish surnames of young people alongside their poems.
What are the prizes?
There are three age categories for poetry prizes: primary, secondary and teacher. In each category, several prizes will be awarded (first place, highly commended, etc.). There is also a multimedia installation category: more information below. View all prizes.
Who is eligible for prizes?
Poetry Object prizes are open to young people (years 3-10) and their teachers, across Australia and New Zealand. We welcome submissions from people outside these parameters, and their submissions will be published in the digital library but not eligible for prizes.
What is the multimedia installation prize category?
Extend your ideas: use creative arts, music or STEM to create a group gallery or exhibition inspired by your poetry! The multimedia installation prize category is open to groups / classes. More information about multimedia installations is in the learning resource. To submit, send a title, some images and a short reflection or explanation to firstname.lastname@example.org.
How are the winners chosen?
Poem entries are judged anonymously by an external professional poet according to our quality criteria (found in the learning resource). Multimedia installation entries are judged by Red Room Poetry staff. Judging decisions are final.
How much does Poetry Object cost?
Registrations and submissions for Poetry Object are free! The learning resource is free to use in educational contexts where no profit is being made by the educational institution. For licensing or reproduction of learning resources outside of the above context, contact us. You can also book a Poetry Object workshop with a professional poet.
Where can I read example Poetry Object poems?
Winning poems from past years are here; commissioned poems by professional poets are here; all submissions to date are in our digital library; and a short animation showcasing 2018 winning poems is here.
Do you have poems written by First Nations poets and/or culturally and linguistically diverse poets?
Each year we commission a diversity of professional poets across Australia and New Zealand to write new poems about their special, curious or talismanic objects. Read commissioned poems from 2012 - now.
Can I book a poetry workshop or have a poet visit my classroom?
Poetry Object workshops bring professional poets into classrooms and special locations to run intensive curriculum-aligned writing workshops that awaken imaginations and support creative opportunities.
Book a Poetry Object workshop with a professional poet.
How can I access Red Room Poetry’s professional development sessions for educators?
Our NESA-endorsed professional development sessions provide in-depth workshops that enhance teaching methodologies to better engage students with poetry, creative writing, critical thinking, and imaginative investigation while enriching curriculum outcomes. More information on professional development.
Do you run other poetry programs for schools?
We conduct Poetic Learning in schools and special locations across Australia and New Zealand year-round, using a range of Red Room Poetry modules (including Poetry Object). More about our modules, structures and pricing.
Do you have other educational resources?
Several! We have videos, PDF resources, and more tools for creative learning. In 2018 we published Poems to Share II, a resource written by teachers for teachers, in partnership with the Australian Association for the Teaching of English (AATE). Explore all Red Room Poetry education resources.