Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Reflections on Girls Make IT

Seven schools, 21 participants, and two high school volunteers attended our Girls Make IT event on 30 January 2015! Although we ran out of time to get to the coding (we had an ambitious agenda), the creativity and perseverance of this crew was an inspiration!

Here's What Worked and Some Ideas for Next Time:
1.  The icebreaker was fun, but it went over the time we'd allotted for it.  I'm glad we didn't interrupt the creative process, though, because it was valuable for getting people talking, sharing, and problem-solving.

2.  Each person got a packet of instructions, so individuals and groups could work at their own pace and help one another.  A couple of my instruction sheets may need a few small tweaks.  Next time, we should consider adding links for "How to videos" to each hand-out.

3.  Tag-teaming with Leah was fun and essential!  Having another instructor circulate and assist groups might be helpful in the future (unless we reduce the group size).

4.  Each team got a bag of supplies.  Next time, we should put names of schools on the bags (and include an inventory checklist).

5.  The progression of skills used in the projects made sense conceptually, but we ran out of time for the coding.  The only way to get around this would be to reduce the total number of projects in future workshops or plan to do the coding in a subsequent workshop.

6.  Creating a word wall (or handout) with key terms such as circuit, short circuit, polarity would be useful.

7.  Having a high school mentor speak about her experiences at EHS and teach the girls how to solder worked incredibly well.  Thanks, Max!

8.  Ensure time for a proper wrap-up and more sharing.

9.  Post the wifi code (and add it to the girls' packets).

10.  The use of Google Classroom was a good way to give our girls digital copies of the projects.  Adding video instructions here would make sense.

11.  Sending out certificates was a nice touch.  Thanks, Lucie!