Day 2 and 3 of Girls Code the World: CSA Programming

We are officially done with Hour 9 of Girls Code the World for the 2020 year. The past two days have been filled with everything from complex coding to building tiny robots on the heads of a toothbrush and eating snacks while listening to the most recent pop songs.

Our schedule for Day 2 was as followed:

9:00 AMOpening Ceremony
9:30 AMScratch Lesson
10:30 AMSnack and Chat Time / Break
11:00 AMApplications of Coding: Biology with
Processing and Hello World!
11:40 AMClosing Ceremony

The Scratch Lesson was led by Cayleigh Haag, a rising sophomore at Central Bucks West. She practiced the curriculum with the founders a few times before the virtual lesson with the girls, and she executed it flawlessly. During this lesson, founders Sydney and Mina were able to go into a breakout room with girls who were struggling and needed more one-on-one help, while other girls continued on with Cayleigh.

During Snack and Chat Time, the girls listened to the Top 40 2020 Pop Songs and discussed their favorite movies and TV shows. This Snack and Chat Time is crucial in every day to ensure renewed engagement and overall excitement for the program.

Our second lesson of the day focused on more complex coding. Mina began by showing a Biology with Processing Project, demonstrating both how coding can be edited to change its appearance and also how coding can be used to model big-picture scenarios. The girls brainstormed different ways code could model real-life systems such as body shapes or microscopic cells.

Sydney introduced Java to the girls and explain how to “print out” a String in Java. The girls were all able to complete the most simple Java method: “Hello World!”. One of the girls’ successes is shown below.

Hello World! is an introductory computer science concept, often seen in AP Computer Science. It was incredible to watch how the girls were able to master it within a few minutes.

Our schedule for Day 3 was as follows:

9:00 AMOpening Ceremony
9:30 AMBristlebot Building
10:30 AMSnack and Chat Time / Hangman Game
11:00 Practice
11:40 AMClosing Ceremony

The girls came to Day 3 excited to participate in Girls Code the World. We worked on our Bristlebot Building project, where the girls created small vibrating robots on the head of a toothbrush. This activity encouraged learning about circuits and motors. The girls followed along a pre-recorded video made by Girls Code the World to walk them through the process step-by-step. Some of their projects are pictured below.

After the Bristlebot Building Exercise, the girls reconvened for Snack and Chat Time. The girls munched on snacks from their MakerBox, provided by Girls Code the World, and we played four rounds of Hangman.

After a quick break, the girls logged into their accounts that they made the previous day, and worked through the Angry Birds Lesson. Some of them asked questions in the chat as they moved through the lessons.

At the end of the day, Mina and Sydney prepared the girls for the next day of activities, and the girls recapped what they did the previous day. Although Day 3 consisted of a lot of independent work, they girls learned a lot.

The power of Zoom and technology is that Girls Code the World can still lead lessons from afar, inspiring both independent, creative work and collaborative work with the girls in their groups.

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