Literacy Garden


Client: Mississippi Children's Museum

Location: Jackson, MS, United States

Completion date: 2014

Artwork budget: $2,250,000

Project Team

Landscape Architect

Nuno Gonçalves Ferreira


Landscape Architect

Erin Hayne


Industry Resource

Donnie Goff

Fountain Construction


Alicen Blanchard

Mississippi Children's Museum

Landscape Architect

Robert Poore

Industry Resource

Sarah Sheperd

Vortex International


The Literacy Garden at Mississippi Children’s Museum is a one-of-a-kind experience for children to cultivate early childhood literacy skills in an exciting, imaginative outdoor environment. The garden has been a statewide collaborative effort between renowned education and design partners to provide unparalleled experiences to all of Mississippi’s children. In the garden children will unlock wonders and adventures untold.


Six pre-reading skills guided the design of The Literacy Garden: 1.- Phonological Awareness (hear sounds), 2.- Print Awareness (read everything), 3.- Print Motivation (love books), 4.- Narrative Skills (tell stories), 5.- Letter Knowledge (know letters), 6.- Vocabulary (learn words). These six goals are achieved by creating different areas in the garden, conceptualized and designed by NunoErin in collaboration with Robert Poore. Lumiartecnia America and Vortex International developed the 20-feet tall Dancing Digital Water Curtain that writes water words, water patterns and liquid pictures revealed in the cascading water. Fountain Construction company carried out all civil construction tasks and the renovation of the space.


NunoErin developed a series of exhibits and content creation tools that provide the museum with a platform and framework upon which to build and evolve their own interactive stories and content over time. Exemplary of these systems is the Sound Pylon Stage, an immersive storytelling system composed of spiraling sound towers, which house a hidden network of speaker, that tell stories across the system of pylons. As stories are told, the sound moves around the pylon system, guiding children through a physical space as the story unfolds. Other original space is The magical Digital Water Curtain, creating a unique water experience for children who are able to interact with the dancing waterfall by writing letters, texts or painting with their fingers, using a specific application for their tablets or smartphones.

Additional Information

This project was possible thanks to the generosity of all of the founding donors of the Build. Play. Grow! campaign.