Deadlines: Submissions are accepted from 8/1 - 11/15 each year.
The Louine Schaufler Youth Poetry Contest was established in the fall of 2021. The purpose of the contest is to encourage poem-making by South Dakota students.
What to submit: Students may submit up to three of their best poems that somehow relate to the overarching theme “growing up in South Dakota.”
We don’t mean for this to be too restrictive, so write about what you are thinking about and feeling, but we also want some relation to life here in particular. The poems need not be autobiographical.
Who can submit: There are two categories: middle school and high school. Any South Dakota students in those grades are eligible.
Judging: Judging will be conducted by members of the South Dakota State Poetry Society board.
Awards: Each category (middle school and high school) is judged separately. The prizes are $75 for first place, $50 for second, and $25 for third in each category.
If mailing your submission, the entry should be postmarked by the deadline and sent to PO Box 8251, Brookings, SD 57006.
About Louine Schaufler:
Born in 1923, in Lebanon, South Dakota, Louine Wheeler was the oldest of six children. Her mother died when she was nine, and she and two of her siblings were raised by her mother’s sister and husband in Salem. After graduating from St. Mary’s High School, she married “Butch” Schaufler and together they ran a successful farming operation for over fifty years. To bring in extra money, but mostly I think because she enjoyed the people, she also worked at Humboldt Supply.
She was active in the community and her church and made the most wonderful pies.
Although she never had any of her own, my Aunt Louine had a soft spot for children. I suspect each one of her nieces and nephews thought he or she was her favorite. I don’t know if she enjoyed poetry, but she praised my attempts as if they rivaled Frost or Dickinson. She lived to be 96 years old and I still sent her my poems. Every writer needs a cheerleader and it is my hope that this contest will pass on some of my Aunt Louine’s encouragement to others.
- By Jane Wheeler, who established the contest in her aunt's honor.
Teacher Resources: Lesson plans with questions to answer before reading, the poem link, poetry analysis questions, and writing prompts based on the analysis *Note I include a link to read each poem, but we cannot republish them here.
Lesson plans and revision tips written by Jodi Andrews, MA.