Poetry & Idea Generator: A Two Night Mini for All Writers

May 12 - 19, 2022


A Two-Night Mini Online Course
Join children’s book poets Laura Shovan and Padma Venkatraman to learn about poetry forms with time to generate your own short poems.

This program is a great fit if you’re looking for a short course of two, 75-minute sessions offering limited interaction with the community, but loads of information.


  • Thursday, May 12, 2022 (7pm – 8:15pm EST)
  • Thursday, May 19, 2022 (7pm – 8:15pm EST)
  • Webinar-style program with closed captioning available and limited interaction in the chat

Feedback Expected:

  • None is included in the course. There will be limited interaction in the chat feature of the webinar-style program.
poetry & Idea generator


Poetry and lyrical language is all around us. Catch your words and find your rhythm as you explore poetic forms with Laura Shovan and Padma Venkatraman. We’ll collect inspiration from other poets to craft our own visions of the world, and use poetic exercises to spark and harness creativity.

Let’s talk about form and the raw beauty of poetic expression. Let’s embrace poetry’s unique ability to act as a springboard for creativity.

Sessions will be webinar-style with a mini-lecture and sample readings, followed by writing together and poets in conversation. Community participation will occur via writing exercises and Q&A hosted in the chat feature of Zoom.


  • You’re a poet looking for community and inspiration with fellow creators.
  • You’re not (or not yet?) a poet, but are looking for new ways to build creativity. This can include authors, illustrators, and storytellers of any type. The sessions are about harnessing the creativity that poetry can inspire.
  • You’re looking for something short, sweet, and smart! This is not a full workshop; instead the two 75-minute sessions are meant to engage and spark your curiosity of poetic forms.


This session takes place over 2 evenings, with live webinar sessions starting at 7:00pm Eastern.

Note: If your schedule does not allow you to attend live sessions, that’s OK! You’ll have access to the recordings. Recordings will be sent to you within 24 hours of the live session and available through June 30, 2022.

Tentative AGENDA:

Part One: Thursday, May 12 (7pm-8:15pm EST)

  • Welcome, The Highlights Foundation
  • Dive into poetic form, including:
    • Mini-lesson: Triolet
    • Sample selections
    • Writing together (share in chat if you feel comfortable)
    • Poets in conversation with Q & A
  • Closing

Part Two: Thursday, May 19 (7pm-8:15pm EST)

  • Dive into poetic form, including:
    • Mini-lesson: “Free” Verse
    • Sample selections
    • Writing together (share in chat if you feel comfortable)
    • Poets in conversation with Q & A
  • Closing


To spark imagination in children and to bring their minds to new places, we must first do the same for ourselves. These sessions will help you tap into new avenues of creativity through poetic form, inspiring new or revitalized ways to tell stories for children.


“The faculty’s joyful enthusiasm about poetry left me feeling excited to write.”

“I learned about the large number of poetic forms and that gives me a taking off point for research those forms and experimenting on my own.”

“The faculty were knowledgeable, talented and thoughtful in their presentations. And the pace and level of discussion seemed to have something for all levels of participants.”


Laura Shovan

Laura Shovan is a children’s author, educator, and poet. Her chapbook, Mountain, Log, Salt and Stone, won the Harriss Poetry Prize.…
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Padma Venkatraman

Padma Venkatraman is the author of THE BRIDGE HOME which has garnered 8 stars, and has been honored as one…
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