Four Four Beat Labs is a digital pedagogies incubator founded in 2012. Our commitment is to expanding traditional perspectives of “the classroom” space. That is, how it looks, where it happens, the archival resources used, and what happens in it when technological innovation meets pedagogical sensibility. The projects we incubate are guided by design principles that utilize the storied meanings of cultural artifacts to buildout learning spaces and installations across analog, digital, and augmented platforms.
One of our principal projects is The HipHop2020 Curriculum Project (HipHop2020). As a case study, it highlights the use of stories and artifacts created through the production of Hip Hop music and culture. HipHop2020 began in 2008 at The Leadership Center at Morehouse College. It the Hip Hop archive as a design issue in secondary and post-secondary humanities instruction. The project’s mission is to design, produce, and curate as much educational content as possible – stories, classes, workshops, lectures, conferences, summer programs, social media and digital marketing campaigns – that highlight the often hidden activism in Hip Hop-inspired artifacts with the focus remaining on leveraging various digital mediations to enhance the social justice and civic leadership capacities of secondary and post-secondary youth and youth influencers.
Our projects and archival collections are designed to also serve as a resource for teachers and educators, as well as music enthusiasts, digital humanists, and creatives interested in interactive engagement with culture, music, and technology. Through the acquisition of the Michael Webster Collection in 2013 we have expanded our territory into curating pedagogical concepts and archiving the diversity of our curriculum, our collections, and our expansions into virtual and immersive platforms.