News & Events

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Elementary School Writers’ Camp

July 27th—

This summer, elementary school students at 826CHI explored exotic locales, taking to the page to transform their imaginative observations of lands both known and ne'er-before-discovered.

Each day, students approached our wall-sized world map to determine their story's next setting. They then detailed the sights, sounds, and smells of these new places, focusing on using sensory language to develop their characters, dialogue, and plot.

Students got their creative juices flowing by giggling their way through a variety of theater games, channeling their energy into the creation of stellar exploration and travel-based stories. On the last day of camp, students proudly presented their work to parents, friends, and 826CHI staff—check out the photos on our Flickr

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Pitchfork // 826CHI’s Teen Press Corps

July 25th—

826CHI's elite Teen Press corprs took Pitchfork Music Festival by storm, interviewing artists and preparing reflection pieces of cultural criticism for publication. We are extremely grateful to the wonderful people at Pitchfork Music Festival and Pitch Perfect PR for helping our students gain access to so many talented artists, to the Chicago Reader for lending us their wonderful videographer for the weekend (!), and to the following musicians for making time to speak with our students:

>> Protomartyr
>> Parquet Courts
>> Jimmy Whispers
>> Single Mothers
>> Mourn
>> Kittyhawk
>> Tim Kinsella
>> Donnie Trumpet and the Social Experiment

Stay tuned for interview footage and transcripts as well as a beautiful zine-full of student writing!

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The Word Laboratory

July 23rd—

Our Word Laboratory program, held yearly at 826CHI, is specifically designed to support young English Language Learners throughout the summertime; helping them avoid the "summer slump" and actively expand their written, oral, and literary English skills. The Word Lab uses visual art as a springboard for this work, first letting students' imaginations run wild, then harnessing their creativity in the form of written reflection.  

This July, students invented aliens, cityscapes, kingdoms, and more using any combination of watercolor, papier-mâché, glitter, marker, and magazine collage.

After crafting to their hearts’ content, students composed writing to accompany their their artwork, which they routinely presented to a group of their peers and volunteers with the aid of 826CHI's esteemed glitter picture frames.

To celebrate the end of the program, we hosted a reading and transformed 826CHI's writing lab into an art gallery—complete with Compliment Cards, which students, volunteers, parents, and friends used to personaly encourage these young artists. 

Photos are on our Flickr!

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Community Partners - We Want to Hear from You!

July 20th—

Are you a school, non-profit, or community organization interested in partnering with 826CHI? We have just the form for you!

We review partnership requests on a quarterly basis. On July 31st, 2015, we will review proposals for programs beginning in October, November, or December 2015. If you fill out this form before July 31st, 2015, you will hear from us in mid-August. We can't wait to hear from you!

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#ChiNerdFest Success!

July 16th—

Our amazing friends at the the Chicago Nerd Comedy Festival raised a magnificent $5,050 for us last night—thank you so, so much!

If you couldn't make it to the event but want to contribute, check out their Indiegogo campaign to benefit 826CHI. In ‪the Fest's own words, "Every. Single. Thing. Counts!" 

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