Recently, our team had the wonderful opportunity to participate with Ladies Learning Code to host an educational event. We had 21 learners, mostly women, who came out to learn how to make and program a music reactive desk lamp. The workshop was lead by our very own Eric Moon and Kelsey Shorten, who helped to instruct the learners on topics such as micro-controller basics, use of Arduino IDE, basic C++ code for Arduino, experimenting with the code, and a range of others. Many other members of our team participated in the event, either in prep or as a mentor for the learners during the event.
Together with the mentors, the learners used the code they had learned to program their micro-controllers and connect it to the lights. Once they had achieved this, learners were encouraged to challenge themselves by modifying or improving the code to make the lamp do additional things, such as light colours in a pattern. The learners did such an amazing job that they have been invited to show off their work at BeakerNight next month. Each member of our team has a different favourite part of the event, like Jim who enjoyed the moment when all the learners had completed their lamps and got to watch the incredible light show that they had created. Matt enjoyed watching learners challenge themselves to move beyond the basic code they had been taught to create a unique and diverse classroom environment. Kelsey enjoyed watching each of the learners work together and support each other to overcome their struggles with the code and progress as a team.
Ladies Learning Code is a program created by Canada Learning Code designed to offer hands-on learning opportunities for beginners to learn the skills they need to create in a digital world. The program welcomes adults of all ages and genders but was created with the intention of creating an environment for women to learn. Workshops are offered in a variety of themes, with mentors from a variety of skill and experience backgrounds. Canada Learning Code also runs programs targetted at other demographics such as Kids Learning Code, Girls Learning Code, and Teachers Learning Code, among others. Since August of 2011, Canada Learning Code has hosted over 2000 educational events. Check out their upcoming events at www.canadalearningcode.ca or on their facebook page.