Two Grade 9 girls were given Arduino kits to ‘play around’ with for 4 weeks (9 lessons). The girls were told to explore, create, inquire, think critically and develop a simple introductory guide for other students. The rest of the class (all boys) were learning the fundamentals of Object Oriented Programming and the Python programming language. The girls had already learned the basics of Python in a Code Challenge that I had coached them through last term. I was confident that the girls could mostly teach themselves the basics of Arduino by using the instructional books that come with the kits and also from watching Youtube videos.
Here are their introductory guides on Arduino. I particularly enjoyed reading their reflections at the end.
I think it is important for teenagers to know that they are capable of learning something on their own. When one girl came to class to show-off a cool project, I could see the interest grow in the other girl. They were not competitive but their interest and excitement definitely helped to motivate each other.
Go to my previous post to view images and videos of their Arduino creations: https://elketeaches.wordpress.com/2016/10/17/girls-shake-up-gender-stereotypes-with-physical-computing/