Bringing programs inside the schools eliminates many of the barriers students and their families face when it comes to accessing enrichment programming. 


From the Aiken Writers Room to Readers Theater performances to the Poet Trees, WordPlay brings project-based reading, writing and storytelling workshops into classrooms, with partnerships between trained teaching artists and classroom teachers to complement curriculum with the arts.



Through a partnership with Cincinnati Public Schools, WordPlay brings creative learning into classrooms. Journey reaches 100% of students in pre-K through 6th grade at Chase Elementary for the duration of the school year, integrating creative writing, theater, dance and visual arts into Common Core content. Readers Theater introduces reading and theatrical skills to young students by bringing books to the stage through performance. The Poet Tree gives children a fun introduction to poetry, customized for individual classrooms and culminating in poems being hung in a tree on the school campus as gifts for the public. 


An after-school reading and creative learning experience at Chase Elementary School, WORDlab provides support for students in grades 3-6 to boost reading proficiency. WORDlab is designed to foster positive feelings about reading and writing as students participate in focused reading activities blended with discussion, writing, visual art and themed movement/play.

WORDlab is made possible in part by grants from the Greater Cincinnati Foundation; the Donald M. and Laura C. Harrison Foundation; and the Eleanora C.U. Alms Trust, Fifth Third Bank, Trustee.


The WordPlay Writers' Room launched in a former teacher's lounge inside Aiken New Tech High School in 2017. A hub for programs both during and after school, the Writers' Room provides equitable access for all students in the school to creative programs, as well as consistent opportunities to collaborate with school staff. Each week, WordPlay staff lead the 7th and 8th grade Humanities classes for creative writing experiences with historical context; several classes of Aiken's international students visit the Writers' Room weekly to engage in writing for social action; and WordUP, our longest-running teen program (begun in 2012), meets weekly after school for a deep dive into social justice, current events, news literacy and multi-genre writing experiences. 

 The WordPlay Writers Room is made possible thanks to funding from:

Dater Foundation.jpg

Special thanks to our school partners:

Academy of World Languages

Aiken New Tech High School

Chase Elementary School

Cincinnati Public Schools

Ethel Taylor Elementary

Oyler School

Parker Woods Montessori

Project Connect

Roll Hill Academy

Sayler Park Elementary

School for Creative and Performing Arts

South Avondale Elementary