May 18: Photos, parent survey, and summer opportunities
Our apologies that end-of-semester events got in the way of posting this informatoin sooner.
Parents, please take 5 minutes to fill the form here. When you submit the form, it will send you a confirmation email with a link to the photo gallery for the meeting on April 21. Coders did an amazing job presenting their projects!
The College of Engineering will offer two camps for girls this summer. Please find information about these camps here. (Scroll down to "Summer Events.")
We enjoyed getting to know your daughters this spring. We hope the short foray into computing has piqued their interest and that they will continue exploring the fascinating world of computing this summer and beyond. See our Resources page for ideas. Thank you for encouraging your daughters that they can do whatever they put their minds to. Have a great summer!
Apr 20: Time to Celebrate :-)
Where has the time gone? Tomorrow is the last SGWC meeting of the semester.
To celebrate your accomplishments, we'll have a bit of pomp and ceremony. Parents and siblings are invited.
Where: 1345 Engineering Building (off the lobby in north/west corner, where most of you enter the building)
When: Saturday, April 21
10:00-10:40am - Project Presentations
10:40-11.00am - Awarding of Certificates
11:00-11.20am - Pictures
11:20-12.00pm - Refreshments, where to go from here, wrap up
If you were not able to attend SGWC last Saturday, Please fill the short Coder Survey here. We need feedback from Coders to help us both improve the club and raise funding for future clubs (companies want evidence that their money will be well spent). We will be asking for feedback from parents at the ceremony.
If you still have a micro:bit, please remember to return it tomorrow.
We are looking forward to seeing what all of you have done in the short time we've had together.
Apr 13: Finishing up
We are wrapping up our group projects this week! Come in with a plan to finish up your impact project in this last working session. Please be sure to arrive before 10am so that your group mates are not waiting on you!
Our last meeting of SGWC will be a week from Saturday (April 21). Coders will demo their impact projects. Parents and siblings are invited to stay for the demos and some light refreshments. We'll send more information about logistics in the coming week.
Those of you who checked out a Micro Bit: Please remember to bring them to class tomorrow. We will love if you can briefly say what you did with them---or better yet, give a quick demo.
We are looking forward to seeing you this Saturday by 10 am.
Apr 6: Opportunities to check out
We'd like to call your attention to two fun opportunities for MS & HS programming enthusiasts:
Game design challenge from Google w/ 10K prize: https://play.google.com/about/changethegame/#challenge.
Phillips Academy Capture The Flag (PACF), a free online cyber security and computer science competition for middle- and high-school students. Teams of up to 5 competitors face a series of increasingly challenging problems, in which they must break, hack, decrypt, reverse engineer or do whatever it takes to find hidden flags (answer strings). Challenges will be distributed across the spectrum, for beginners and for experts. Prizes totaling $20,000 in value will be awarded to the top-ranking teams. See https://2018.pactf.com/.
We hope you had a great spring break and look forward to seeing you in another week!
Mar 29: What will you do over spring break?
If you will spend your spring break here in Lansing, you might be interested in the Google-Sponsored Spring Break classes offered by ITEC. Find details about several very fun classes at http://www.iteclansing.org/programs/grow-with-google/.
And remember: No SGWC this Saturday or next. We'll see you again on Saturday April 14.
Have a great spring break!
Mar 23: Plan for traffic and other info
A heads up: The Michigan High School Boys Basketball tournament is happening this weekend at MSU. With the first game starting at 10 am, you can expect traffic! Parking may be difficult and many of the parking lots will be charging $5.
SGWC mentors will be in the lobby to escort coders to the room from 9:30 to 10:00 am, and will walk coders down to the lobby at noon. Please plan accordingly.
A couple of other reminders:
- • SGWC does NOT meet on March 31 or April 7 because of the Michigan Public School spring break.
- • If you checked out a micro:bit, please bring it with you to class. We hope you had fun with it and will be willing to tell/show the class what you did with it.
- • We have 10 micro:bits that we can loan out over the spring break. Reply to this email if you are interested in 'reserving' one. (But we will give coders who have not checked one out before priority over those who have.)
Let us know if you have any questions or concerns. Come ready to work on your impact projects and to learn about another great woman in computing!
Mar 19: We have micro:bits for you to "test drive"
We love that several of you are learning about the micro:bit! When it comes to what you can do with this little device, the sky is the limit. You can program it to play music while displaying messages and simple images, detect and respond to motion and orientation and much more.
In addition to the tutorial on Grok Learning (https://groklearning.com/hoc/activity/virtual-pet/), there are many tutorials for fun projects using them on http://microbit.org/. You can chose to program the micro:bit using Python, Scratch, or Java Script. Using Python will reinforce ideas you have been learning in SGWC.
If you create an account on Grok Learning using your SGWC address, we will receive an automated verification email checking that you are an actual person (not a "bot"). As soon as we see the mail, we will verify your identity and let you know. Creating an account on Grok Learning will enable you to save your work and also give you access to lots of other tutorials and programming competitions.
Don't forget to bring the micro:bit with you this Saturday loaded and ready to demo to your class. If you have trouble loading your program onto the micro:bit, we can show you how on Saturday provided that you have saved your program in the cloud (e.g., on Grok Learning or in Codesters).
We have 10 micro:bits to loan out so everyone should have an opportunity to take one for a 'test drive' at some point. They are also very economical to purchase at https://www.adafruit.com/category/932 (you will want the 'Go Bundle,' which is currently sold out; add yourself to the waiting list to be notified when they are in-stock, which should be soon).
Please let us know if you have any questions or problems. We are excited to see what you do with the micro:bits this week!
Mar 14: Meeting this Saturday and micro:bit opportunity
For fun and to review before this Saturday's meeting, we highly recommend creating a "Virtual Pet" (https://groklearning.com/hoc/activity/virtual-pet/). We'll bring real micro:bits (http://microbit.org/) to class on Saturday. It will be exciting to demo what you've done to your classmates!
In the 8-12 group this Saturday, coders will be planning and coding their group projects with some review of options for sprites and text in Codesters.
We are raring to go after our spring break, and hope you are too! We look forward to seeing you this Saturday!
Mar 1: Next SGWC meeting
A quick reminder: Our next meeting is Saturday March 17, when MSU will be back in session following our spring break.
It will be great if you are able to practice using the concepts learned in the first half of SGWC during this break. Regular practice and review are the key to becoming proficient in coding. We recommend any of the Python activities at https://groklearning.com/hoc/. (You will need to create an account to save your progress.)
For example, "Disease Epidemic (Python)" is a good one to review and practice:
- • printing output to the screen
- • getting input from the user
- • storing data in variables
- • integers and strings as different data types
- • mathematical manipulation of integers
- • making decisions using if statements
Have a great next couple of weeks!
Feb 23: Road closures around campus
For information about road closures due to flooding which may affect your drive to SGWC tomorrow:
- View the Closures and Detours map at https://apps.gis.msu.edu/construction/closures-and-detours/.
- View the Campus Safety Information page at https://msu.edu/emergency/ for more information.
- For a complete listing of scheduled IPF maintenance and construction alerts, visit the IPF Alerts web page.
Also, Introduce a Girl to Engineering will be taking place in the Engineering Building shortly after SGWC lets out. Expect more activity and traffic than usual as the morning progresses.
We look forward to seeing you this Saturday.
Feb 21: SGWC News
Last Saturday, coders worked with variables and wire framing. To get the most from our meeting this Saturday, coders may wish to review the first three lessons of codesters.com. The key to learning to code is practice.
In the first 4 meetings, coders also decided that the theme for their impact project will be Art. After this Saturday, they will have enough coding under their belts to begin implementation. In the meantime, they continue to research their theme and discuss their designs.
The main content of our website (www.spartangwc.org) is now in place. Please take a minute to see what you can find there. Let us know any additional content that would be helpful and other comments for improvement.
Finally, please be aware that there will be another event in the Engineering Building this Saturday starting shortly after SGWC ends. You can expect to see more activity than usual and more traffic as the morning progresses.
We look forward to seeing you this Saturday.
Feb 21: ITEC & Grow With Google
ITEC is partnering with Google to bring the Grow with Google tour to Lansing on March 9 and 10. Google will host the event on Lansing Community College’s downtown campus to help job seekers, small business owners, students, educators, and entrepreneurs improve their digital skills. Learn more about Grow with Google Lansing at https://events.withgoogle.com/join-google-in-lansing/.
Feb 21: GWC Summer Immersion Program
Girls Who Code offers a 7 week Summer Immersion Program for rising juniors and seniors. The application for 2018 is open. See http://girlswhocode.com/programs/.
Feb 16: Meeting on Feb 17
Again, our apologies to those who did not receive the email notice sent last Friday afternoon that the SGWC meeting on Saturday was cancelled due to hazardous road conditions. In the future, we will post a message on this page if we have to cancel other meetings. We will post schedule changes, if any, as soon as a decision is made—typically by the evening before the change, but certainly by 8:00 am on the day of the change.
If you did not receive the cancellation notification sent on Friday Feb 9 or the notice sent Sunday Feb 11, please check for them in your auto-filtered mail folders (e.g., spam, junk, trash). If you find them, please update your mail filters so that messages sent from firstname.lastname@example.org are delivered to a folder that you monitor regularly. If you cannot find them, please notify email@example.com so we can determine a more reliable way to reach you by email.
Two weeks ago, coders brainstormed ideas for the impact projects. This week, they will be honing their ideas and continuing to build their programming knowledge using Codesters. We look forward to seeing them tomorrow.
Feb 11: Apologies, News, and Parent Emails
Our sincere apologies to those of you who did not see the cancellation notice that we sent on Friday for yesterday's SGWC meeting. We sent the notice to firstname.lastname@example.org, which forwards to a google group that forwards to all who joined the group. (We also sent it directly to a couple of parents who cannot join the google group.)
In the future, in addition to sending email notices, we will post notices of cancellation and other announcements as "News" on the Spartan GWC website (www.spartangwc.org). Unfortunately, this page had not been created in time for the cancellation this week. But now that it is ready, you should look there for latest updates regarding the clubs. Please take a minute to check it out.
Also, if you did not receive the notification sent Friday, please check for it in your auto-filtered mail folders (e.g., junk, promotions). If your mailer is automatically filtering messages sent to the parents list, please update your mail filters so that messages from the parent's list are delivered to a folder that you monitor regularly. Notify email@example.com if you are not able to locate the cancellation message in any of your mail folders.
Again, we apologize for the inconvenience and unnecessary risks to travel under the road conditions on Saturday morning. Also, thanks very much to Jessica Figueroa for staying with coders who were dropped off until their parents could return to pick them up!
Feb 10: Meeting Cancelled
The Feb 10 meeting was cancelled due to hazardous driving conditions. An email was sent to the parents mailing list on Feb 9. We regret that some never saw this message. Please check your auto-filtered mail folders (e.g., junk, promotions), if you did not receive the message in your inbox. If your mailer is automatically filtering messages sent to the parents list, please update your mail filters so that messages from the parent's list are delivered to a folder that you monitor regularly. Notify firstname.lastname@example.org if you are not able to locate the cancellation message in any of your mail folders.