Big Class offers a variety of free, innovative programs that provide under-resourced students, aged 6-18, with opportunities to explore their creativity and improve their writing skills. We also aim to help teachers get their classes excited about writing. Our services are structured with the understanding that great leaps in learning can happen with one-on-one attention and that strong writing skills are fundamental to future success.
All of our programs are challenging and enjoyable, and ultimately strengthen each student’s power to express ideas effectively, creatively, confidently, and in his or her individual voice.
- In-School Projects are short-term writing and publishing collaborations with public schools and teachers around New Orleans. Projects are supported by a dedicated group of volunteer tutors, artists, copy editors, and designers who engage with students over several weeks, working towards a final project that is shared with the community in a public reading and celebration.
- Workshops are geared to specific age groups; participants are offered the opportunity to approach writing of all styles and genres in novel and exciting ways, through stories and poems, comics, photographs, paintings, and short films.
- The Writers’ Room, at Sylvanie Williams College Prep Elementary in Central City, is a dedicated room for writers in grades 1-7 to improve their communicative and expressive abilities through curriculum-aligned writing workshops led by volunteers that culminate in published work.
- The Pizza Poetry Project celebrates National Poetry Month and the power of youth voices through the publication of poems by young writers on pizza boxes, in potholes, and in other unusual and public ways around New Orleans. Poems are collected throughout the year through school and community- based workshops and open submission. This year, we're working with several collaborators to make the project a part of the brand new New Orleans Youth Poetry Festival.
- Young Writers' Council is a collective of 10th, 11th, and 12th graders who identify as writers, artists and/or community changemakers. In the Fall semester, members will serve as the editorial board and contribute to The Good Troublemakers publication, as well as participate in writing workshops, site visits and interviews with local writers, activists and community members. In the Spring, in addition to site visits and workshops, members will collectively publish a book. The YWC meet every other Saturday, starting September 23rd. The 2017-2018 YWC application can be found here.