Programs - Performing and Literary Arts › Songwriting and Instruments

Songwriting, Performance & Instrument Petting Zoo with Kim Beggs

Kim Beggs, along with one other musician, would present and facilitate the workshops.  Each station would be set up in a different area of a large room, such as the gym. Presentations would be made to the whole group and then students would break into smaller groups to experience the workshop stations.
Benefit of three stations: If a student becomes more interested in a certain station, they can spend more time at that station. Three, two or only one of the stations can be set up and facilitated; depending on the focus of the class and the desires of the teacher.

Songwriting Station
Songwriting with Kim Beggs involves participation in inspired group co-writing exercises with the class that leads to one or two finished songs. Like a painting, it is important for the students to have the opportunity take part in and have pride in being a creative part of finished, tangible or audio product/art piece.
If more time is available students can receive rich, one-on-one time with Kim to begin, hone and finish their own individual songs. Young writers would have assistance in finding and nurturing their own writing voice and values.
In some schools the level of literacy can vary and therefore be an obstacle for the student. In these cases students are welcome and encouraged to dictate their lyrical ideas to one of the musicians, to the teacher or the teachers aid, so that they are part of the songwriting process.  After all, songwriting and music goes back to well before the written word.

Performance Station – Plugged-in and Unplugged
Performance with Kim Beggs, involves introducing students to the sound system including powered instruments and acoustic instruments and vocals that need a microphone in front for amplification.
Students will be learning about the difference between an unplugged performance and a plugged in performance; finding the balance of the vocal and the instrument being played, so the song can be heard and appreciated.
If students have less experience on their instruments then it can still be a learning experience just to get used to hearing yourself coming out the speaker beside you!

Instrument Petting Zoo Station – Experiential and Hands On
A carload of various instruments owned by Kim Beggs will travel to your school and be made available to students for exploration of sounds, textures and feelings when they are played. It will give insight to the young experimenter about what kind of instrument they would enjoy playing if they were to have an instrument at home. Each instrument would be presented/demonstrated for the class, and then the students could handle each one by themselves.

Grade Suitability:


Maximum Class Size:

Class size

Time Required:

1-3, 2 hour sessions Prep time is 1 hour. If the workshop is set up in one location at the school, so each class streams in throughout the day, then set up only happens once.

Material Required:

Artist will bring: • all paper and pens, one laptop, dictionary, thesaurus • the sound system (small rental fee) • all instruments for petting zoo (small maintenance fee) Schools can provide: • long folding tables for instrument petting zoo display • tables for writing exercises • chairs for students • access to power for sound system • access to school mac computers in order to demonstrate how useful they can be in the creative process, writing, dictionary, thesaurus, recording etc.

Language of Instruction:

English, some French




September - June

Special Notes:

Songs that are written by the class, and not finished during the workshop, will be completed later by Kim Beggs. All finished songs will then be recorded on Garageband by Kim and burned to cd disk so that teachers receive a copy for their records, for listening, revisiting and appreciating. Lyrics and chords will also be provided so songs may be learned and even further honed if students or teachers desire. Schools will receive a digital book of all the work done during the workshop. These books can be printed by the school and distributed to the students.

Kim Beggs

Kim Beggs sings sweet dark tales of northern life, which sometimes includes mermaids.

“Ranked #1 on my [2014, 2011] Polaris Music Prize ballot is Kim Beggs’ independently released Beauty and Breaking…Focused. Universal. Canadian. This is folk music. This is beautiful.” FERVORCOULEE ROOTS MUSIC OPINION
“It’s hugely refreshing to hear not only interesting and engaging lyrics, but also beautifully crafted songs” SING OUT MAGAZINE

Nominee 2014, 2012, 2007 Canadian Folk Music Awards
Nominee 2014, 2013, 2011, 2007 Western Canadian Music Awards

A longer version for songwriting and performance is available. Kim has a lot of experience mentoring people of all ages - the Grand Ole Northern Opry, the Fort Selkirk Songcrafting camp (7 days) and many songwriting programs in the schools over the years.

Contact: 867-334-8696


Visual Arts

Performing and Literary Arts

Multicultural Activities

Artist Talks

Extended Projects

Other Programs