Tascasaurus: Final Event

This post was written by Julia Vallera, an artist and educator working with TASC and Hive NYC on Tascasaurus. It originally appeared in Hive NYC’s blog Explore + Create + Share.

Tascasaurus, a Hive NYC program in partnership with The After School Corporation (TASC) and MOUSE, just wrapped up a workshop series in New York City public schools. Newly-trained after school coordinators joined us in these workshops. We facilitated two workshops at six different middle schools in Brooklyn and the Bronx. Doing two workshops at each school was enough time for a thorough introduction to Hackasaurus and gave the students plenty of time to practice their new hacking skills.

On Saturday, June 2 we will host a culminating event at TASC headquarters in NYC for students and teachers who participated in the project. At the event students will share work, exchange feedback and hack some more code!

Here is a list of the six schools that participated in the Tascasaurus workshop series. All of them plan to continue using Hackasaurus in their future lesson plans.

I.S. 22
M.S. 206
P.S./M.S. 279
P.S. 59
P.S. 225
P.S. 89

The structure of each workshop remained very similar to the original lesson plan implemented at the beginning of the series. There were slight changes depending on time, student numbers, student age and equipment. The length of each workshop varied between one hour and two hours. The first workshop was an introduction to Hacking, STEM topics, HTML, CSS, Keyboard shortcuts, Image files, URL links and X-Ray Goggles. To begin, students chose from a list of STEM-related websites to hack. The list was curated according to content and code structure and included:

BIODIVERSITY
http://www.prospectpark.org/environment/wildlife

CHEMISTRY
http://www.ptable.com/
http://antoine.frostburg.edu/chem/senese/101/index.shtml

OUTER SPACE
http://www.space.com/
http://women.nasa.gov/

MATH
http://www.nbclearn.com/nfl

OTHER SCIENCE
http://www.greatscienceforgirls.org/

In the second workshop students were given a design challenge and self evaluation. Below is an image of a simple point system we created for them to evaluate their newly acquired skills. They accumulated points based on how much/what type of code they hacked. This was a fun way for us to see what they learned and for the students to compare points with one another.

The series was a huge success with the students. They remained completely engaged and focused on remixing code into something they could call their own. Here are some pictures of hacks they created using the website http://www.greatscienceforgirls.org/:

Upon completion of the June 2 culminating event, we will share a finalized curriculum, educator tips, student examples and feedback from the participants….so stay tuned!