THE WORD: The Third Annual Citywide Youth Poetry Jams

The Institute Library, The Future Project, The New Haven Museum, and New Haven Public Schools Present THE WORD: The Third Annual Citywide Youth Poetry Jams, Thursday April 23rd - Friday, April 24th
New Haven, Connecticut, April 10, 2015 –
On Thursday April 23rd and Friday April 24th, THE WORD: A Citywide Youth Poetry Jam will expand for the third time as a showcase for middle school and high school poets, in partnership with The Institute Library, The Future Project, The New Haven Museum, and New Haven Public Schools.
Thursday April 23rd: Culminating multi-week poetry residencies with award-winning hip-hop poet and educator Aaron Jafferis and spoken word artist J-Sun, the April 23rd event will feature 5th-8th grade students from Columbus, Edgewood and Fair Haven schools, as well as the Co-Op High School poetry slam team and other special guests. The middle school poetry jam will take place from 6-7:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 23rd at the Co-Op Theatre, 177 College Street, with doors open at 5:30 p.m.
Friday April 24th: Coordinated by The Future Project’s Movement Director Sarah Tankoos, The Institute Library’s Youth Organizer Elizabeth Larkin, THE WORD’s Aaron Jafferis, and a team of 30 high school students, the April 24 event will feature the original poetry of students from 16 New Haven high schools as well as performances by NHPS alumni. Hosted by the New Haven Museum, the event will take place from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at The New Haven Museum on 114 Whitney Avenue, with doors and exhibits open at 5:00 p.m. There will be light appetizers and snacks available.
More information about the event is available at: 
The video of 2014’s THE WORD is available at:
Students involved in THE WORD high school jam represent: Hillhouse, Riverside Academy, New Horizons, High School in the Community, Wilbur Cross, Hill Regional Career High School, New Haven Academy, Metropolitan Business Academy, Co-Op, Sound School, New Light, Hyde School, Common Ground, ESUMS, Amistad Academy, and Eli Whitney Technical School.
The Institute Library launched The Word in January 2013 to enhance poetry education in New Haven public school classrooms. Directed by award-winning hip-hop poet, playwright, and educator Aaron Jafferis, the program is intended to help close Connecticut's achievement gap in education and energize our city's youth through the power of poetic expression. Building on the experiences of its teaching artists and origins of its host institution, the Institute Library, The Word has helped students learn to read, critique, write, and perform poetry in a variety of traditional and nontraditional forms, from Japanese haiku and Nerudean odes to intricate hip-hop poems. The Word is sponsored with grants from Seedlings Foundation and New Alliance Foundation.
To learn more about the Institute Library, please visit or
The Future Project is a national nonprofit organization to inspire young people to live lives of passion and purpose. By sending full-time Dream Directors into high schools, The Future Project empowers students with the confidence and skills to discover their passions, pursue their dreams, and transform their schools and communities from the inside out. Using an innovative student-centered and project-based approach in group workshops, personalized coaching, and school-wide events, The Future Project ignites the passions of young people and prepares them for the 21st century. The creativity, innovation, and leadership of the students themselves transform their schools and communities into more vibrant and innovative places to learn, live, and thrive.
To learn more about The Future Project, please visit or
New Haven Museum: Founded in 1862 as the New Haven Colony Historical Society to preserve the history and traditions of the Greater New Haven region, the New Haven Museum (NHM) stimulates inquiry, increases understanding, and fosters appreciation of the history and heritage of our locale. Through its collections, exhibitions, programs and outreach, the Museum brings more than 375 years of New Haven history to life. The Museum is located in downtown New Haven at 114 Whitney Avenue.
To learn more about the New Haven Museum, please visit or or call (203) 562-4183.