Word and Sound Lab


Join poet Becca Barniskis and musician Nick Jaffe in an ongoing, open studio, after-school workshop for youth grades 5-8. Start right away making music, poems, and other things no one has heard of yet. Attend one session or attend them all. It’s free!

Tuesdays from 4:30 – 6:00 pm * Jan. 23, 2018 – Mar. 27, 2018

in the Hamline Midway Library Auditorium

1558 W Minnehaha Ave * Saint Paul 55104

iPads and other tech provided or bring your own phone, laptop, tablet, or notebook or just yourself!

Open and FREE for grades 5-8 – no registration necessary—drop in at any time.

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More about the program: Through a mix of direct teaching, structured exercises, student-driven “free studio” work, and informal sharing/critique, learners will be introduced to poetry as a literary, performance, and digital medium by working with GarageBand and iMovie and other digital interfaces as a way to “amplify” their poems with visuals and music and to quickly begin to experiment with conventional and unconventional musical and poetic concepts through the use of digital looping and editing. They’ll have the option to participate in “open studio” during which family members can visit the studio and participate in poetry/music-making with student guidance and in scheduled performances open to the public, during which finished work is presented.

Each session is coached by artists Becca Barniskis and Nick Jaffe. Becca’s a published poet, performer, and regionally and nationally known curriculum designer and consultant. She’s taught poetry for years to a wide range of students in varied contexts including elementary and middle schools. Nick’s a professional musician, audio engineer and Illinois licensed K-8 teacher. For over 15 years he’s taught music, digital recording, video, and the physics of sound to students of all ages in schools and many other contexts.

Click here for student work in progress

This project is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.






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