I built a website to act as a "home base" for our WVR Code Project. Check it out at wvrcode.weebly.com (Keep in mind that it's still a work in progress!).
Many of the younger students have loved programming with the Kodable app, and have really started to get the hang of the vocabulary and different commands. They love unlocking new levels and new fuzzes! We are working on coaching one another through challenges without giving away the solution - we have a strict "no spoiler alert!" motto!
I am getting super interested in coding and programming myself, and have been mentoring every month through some awesome organizations that meet locally - CoderDojoTC and TechnovationMN every month. These organizations provide free coding and programming session for kids (and at some events, just girls) on the weekends. I leave these weekend sessions feeling energized and inspired by the incredible ideas and talents these kids demonstrate!
Through my experiences mentoring with TechnovationMN, I learned about the Technovation Challenge - "a nonprofit dedicated to inspiring girls in technology and entrepreneurship. In the program, middle school girls work in teams to develop mobile apps, conduct market research, write business plans, and create a “pitch” for funding. Each team works with both a classroom teacher at their school and a female mentor/role model from the technology industry. The challenge culminates in a competition where teams compete for funding to take market their app. The goal of the program is to inspire girls to see themselves not just as users of technology, but as inventors, designers, builders and entrepreneurs. Technovation has reached over 1,000 girls across the country, and hopes to reach 2,000 girls this year as they expand globally."
I decided to start a Technovation team at my school and am so excited to get started this week! I'll be coaching and mentoring and team of four 6th grade girls. We decided to call ourselves the #WVRCodeGirls. Our first task is to learn the basics of App Inventor, which I've been learning and exploring through my mentoring opportunities. I can't wait to see our team's ideas take off!
I'm honestly loving geeking out with coding and programming. My next adventures include teaching myself Ruby, and joining a programming learning circle to collaborate with other Ruby users and try out what I'm learning...we'll see how I do! In the mean time, I am also really enjoying participating in #kidscancode Twitter chat, which happens every Tuesday at 7pm, Central time. Join us, if you can!