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2018 Winter #STEAMSaturdays – Programming and Robotics

Friends of Digi-Bridge,

Happy New Year!

Starting on Saturday, January 20th, our #STEAMSaturdays return to Hygge Coworking in West Charlotte and Northpointe Offices in Huntersville. Back by popular demand, this winter’s series will feature LEGO WeDo 1.0 building and coding. Torie Leslie, our Chief Academic Officer says, “We built this series to provide flexibility for scholars who love to build and design with LEGOs and for programmers who enjoy using Scratch to code challenges and adventures for their robot designs.”

Take a look at our course offerings:

Jan. 20th – Building and Coding – Scholars will choose a LEGO design, build it according to blueprint instructions and use Scratch to program it to move.

Jan. 27th – Emphasis on Coding– Scholars will choose a pre-built LEGO robot and use Scratch to program the robot to move and create a scene to match the build.

Feb. 3rd – Emphasis on Building – Scholars will use LEGO WeDo motors and hubs to design a programmable robot.

Feb. 10th – Emphasis on Coding – Scholars will choose a pre-built LEGO WeDo robot and program the tilt and motion sensors, using Scratch, to automate robot movement.

Feb. 17th – Building and Coding – Scholars will choose a LEGO design or create a LEGO design and use Scratch to program it to move.

Remember, there is no prior building or programming knowledge required. Each scholar has the opportunity to begin each course at their learning level.

In addition, every course will have time allotted for work in our coding portal, in which your K-8 scholar will be introduced to a variety of object-oriented computer programming languages. The personalized learning platform allows individuals to move at their own pace, making this course valuable for learners of all levels.

The series will run for five consecutive Saturdays, from January 20th to February 17th, at 9am and will run for 90 minutes each. Click here to register your scholar for courses at whichever location is most convenient for your family. Don’t forget to tell a friend!

We look forward to exploring the world of science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics with your scholar soon.

Here’s to a new year filled with learning!

Cheers,

DJ

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Syncing at #STEAMSaturdays

Today, we’re launching #STEAMSaturdays across Charlotte. While I’m “in it,” I wanted to share a quick note with you.

This morning, I’m sitting at Briarwood School, powered by Arts and Science Council, as a cohort of scholars and their facilitators work through our “Moving With Muscles” Digi-Bin. Attendees are casually dressed, pop hits are playing in the background and participants are thinking critically about the challenge outlined.

When I introduced myself to the group of scholars, one said, and I quote, “Wow. We’re going to use technology here? I’m going to take advantage of that. You know at my house I have my email synced to all my devices.”

Having spent enough time around kids, I’m pretty sure he doesn’t have his email synced to all of his devices, but I’m sure he’s heard an influential adult in his life make a similar statement.

Our scholars are sponges, seeking all opportunities to soak up new knowledge and skill. They imitate those they admire and will find success if given the time and opportunity to pursue it.

So, why not Saturday mornings? 90-minutes of unstructured time to explore, create and maybe even learn how to sync devices.

In year four, I’m filled with tremendous gratitude as I think about how you, our supporters, have committed to our most precious assets. During the 2017-18 academic year, we are on track to serve 1,000 scholars, with support from 28 educators, across five schools and three community centers.

Hot glue guns are coming out now, so I better jump in to lend a hand.

Gratefully,

DJ

P.S.–Interested in visiting a #STEAMSaturdays site? Inbox me! david@digi-bridge.org

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STEAM Learning Through Hip Hop?

Friends,

This summer has been full of new and exciting partnerships for Digi-Bridge. Today, I want to tell you about a particularly unique collaboration that I bet you wouldn’t expect: STEAM education and hip-hop.

Earlier this month, we were invited to be a part of The Intersection: A Conversation About Hip-Hop Culture and Education at the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American  Arts + Culture. Scholars and their families gathered for a performance and presentation by Jahi of PE 2.0, an artist with immense talent, experience and perspective on the importance of hip hop in learning about arts and culture.img_4867Led by #STEAMSaturdays facilitator Kia Moore, a room full of young music-loving scholars were able to take their learning into their own hands with our DJ Digi-Bin by exploring the math, listening and problem-solving skills that allow a DJ to do their job and keep the party going! Scholars learned some basics, then got to apply their mixing technique to their choice of today’s Billboard hits.

img_4856Next, a couple of talented young DJs from With These Handz DJ Academy allowed scholars to put these skills to the test and play their creations on a turntable for everyone to hear.

It was truly an exciting day of hands-on learning for everyone involved. We are so grateful to the Gantt Center for catalyzing this collaboration

Whether through creating your own music or creating your own robot, putting these kinds of experiences in the hands of Charlotte scholars is exactly what we strive to do. To learn more about how you can provide  21st century teaching and learning opportunities to all Charlotte scholars, head to digi-bridge.org/donate and support us as we work to  #ActivateSummer.

Together, we will #bridgethedivide.

 

With tremendous gratitude,

DJ

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The Pathway Revealed

Friends,

In order to bridge the digital divide, Digi-Bridge works to uncover and help create equitable pathways to careers in STEAM fields. Often, scholars begin on this pathway in middle school, where they’ve been assigned a counselor who helps them choose classes that fit their interests and aptitudes. This process continues into high school and college where a scholar chooses their major.

However, times are changing and as the need to fill STEAM careers is growing, we’ve found that the pathway to these jobs may not seem quite so straightforward to many scholars. It seems that the sooner we can help scholars realize their interests and aptitudes the more likely they are to keep moving towards them.

file_002As we work to create the opportunities for scholars to explore and experiment, we meet the most brilliant and capable STEAM professionals who share in our vision. These meet-ups turn into partnerships which turn into opportunities to expose our scholars to the pathway to STEAM careers.

One such partnership we’ve enjoyed has been with Lenora Crabtree, UNCC Biology Services/PhD student and Tiffany Bell, rising Junior Biology student at UNCC. These STEAM professionals brought an exciting chemical reactions lab to our #STEAMSaturdays scholars at Allenbrook Elementary School. Using Tiffany’s previous lab experiments and research, these scientists provided an exploration of the relationship between the oyster shells and changes of temperature and acidity in the surrounding water.

Lenora and Tiffany captivated our scholars both by effectively presenting the science at the level of the 4th and 5th graders, and by relating this change in the oyster’s world to a change in their own world, their neighborhoods and even their homes. I can’t think of a better way to outline the path to being a scientist than by bringing scientists from our local university directly to our scholars.file_001

Would you like to help us continue to provide opportunities like this for our Digi-Bridge scholars? Learn more about how you can help us #bridgethedivide by following us on social media (@DigiBridgeUS), and join us on June 17th at the Google Fiber Space for our Summer Daddy Daughter Code-In. This is another great opportunity to expose our young ladies to STEAM concepts and careers!

Click here to learn more about and register for Digi-Bridge courses and events.

Here’s to revealing the pathway for Charlotte scholars!

Cheers,

DJ

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Bridging the Divide! Read All About it!

Friends,

We have a quick but very exciting announcement. On top of being featured in a Charlotte Observer and News & Observer series about supporting the growth of high-achieving low income students, our work and our scholars have been featured on the front page of the Observer!

We are so pleased to see a spotlight shone on the work being done to advocate for under-served scholars in Charlotte. We are also extremely grateful that the Observer has chosen to include our work in such an important piece.

If you can’t get your hands on a paper copy of Wednesday’s Observer, click here to check out the online version. You will find our work mentioned under “#4 Pay for extra opportunities when parents can’t”.

Thank you, as always, for supporting Digi-Bridge as we work to #bridgethedivide!

Cheers,

DJ

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Prepare for Liftoff, Summer #DDCodeIn is Coming!

Friends,
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We are excited to announce that registration for our second Daddy Daughter Code-In of 2017 is now open! Join us on Saturday, June 17th from 7-8:30 pm for a night of food, fun, and technology.
If you have never attended one of our Code-Ins before, you are in for a treat. After eating together, each Daddy-Daughter Duo will rotate through activities that include exploring robotics, creating constellations, and more!

Did you know that although women fill close to 1/2 of all jobs in the U.S. economy, they hold less than 25 percent of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) jobs? Let’s show our young ladies that their potential is out of this world, because after all, girls code too!

We gear our activities towards K-8th grade scholars, but all ages are welcome. The event is located at Google Fiber’s East 7th street location. Please come prepared to pay for parking that evening at one of the parking lots or decks off of 7th street.

img_3281Come celebrate Father’s Day early with your daughter(s) and enjoy the teamwork of hands-on STEAM learning! Click here to reserve your spot now, as tickets are limited.

Please contact Kelly Carpenter at kelly@digi-bridge.org for additional questions or inquiries. We can’t wait to see you there!

Cheers,

DJ

 

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ICYMI: #STEAMSaturdays in The Observer

Friends,

We are proud to share that our digital consultancy work at Ashley Park Pre-K – 8 was featured in The Charlotte Observer this week!

In case you missed it, here is the link to a piece that informs the community not only img_0567our #STEAMSaturdays programming, but a number of fun learning opportunities we have been able to provide thanks to the generosity of the OrthoCarolina Foundation.

Any opportunity to have our work featured on such a platform means a lot to us here at Digi-Bridge and spreading the word about our programming makes great strides to help us #bridgethedivide. Please check out the article, and if you could share it with your friends on social media, we would really appreciate it! Here is the URL if you need: http://www.charlotteobserver.com/news/local/education/article149050544.html

file_000Just as a reminder, registration is still open for our Summer #STEAMSaturdays, which run until June 3 at Advent Coworking (Plaza Midwood) and until June 10th at Hygge Coworking West (West Charlotte) and Birkdale Offices (Huntersville). Classes can now be purchased individually at $25 per course to best work around your family’s Summer schedule!

You can learn more about these courses and register at digi-bridge.org/courses and send any questions to Kelly@digi-bridge.org.

Wishing you a restful weekend,

DJ

 

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Summer #STEAMSaturdays are Just Around the Corner!

Friends,
We at Digi-Bridge are preparing to kick off our Summer #STEAMSaturdays in three different locations. It’s a very exciting time for us and img_3760we want to make sure you have the chance to be a part of our growing efforts to #bridgethedivide.
Registration is still open and will remain open throughout our Summer series as you are now able to register for each class individually. We want our STEAM enrichment to be available to your family no matter what your Summer holds!
As always, in addition to advancing through our coding portal, scholars will have an opportunity to engage in hands-on STEAM activities. Here is a preview of our Summer offerings from our BodyWorks series as well as a special bonus from Careers in the Arts:

May 6th – Analyzing our Airways

May 13th- Moving with Muscles

May 20th- Seeing Eye to Eye

May 27th- The Blood Within Us

June 3rd- Cruising through the Kidneys

June 10th- DJ Bin (pulse, beats, and beat combination) *Hygge West and Birkdale only

Here again are all the details and the link to register:
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Locations : Hygge Coworking West, Advent Coworking, and Birkdale Offices

Dates : Six Saturdays from May 6 – June 10
(Five Saturdays, May 6 – June 3 at Advent Coworking)
 
Time : 9 – 10:30 am
Cost : $25 per Saturday
Register now on our site by clicking here.
 
Feel free to reach out to Kelly@digi-bridge.org with any questions.
Cheers,
DJ

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Get Ready for Demo Day and Summer #STEAMSaturdays!

Friends,
Summer is quickly approaching and we know that your schedules are filling up with lots of great activities and vacations. We wanted to share with you all what Digi-Bridge has on its calendar so that you can include us in your summer fun!

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FREE Demo Day (This Saturday!)
If you are interested in learning more about our #STEAMSaturdays but aren’t quite sure you’re ready to register, we are hosting a Free Demo Day so that you can come try it out.

We will walk you, the parents, through the process so you understand the core principles of #STEAMSaturdays while your scholar gets to experience it firsthand. It’s Digi-Bridge’s “Try Before You Buy” event, if you will! We only have a few spots left, so click here to register now!

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Location: Hygge Coworking West
2128 Remount Rd.
Charlotte, NC 28208
Time/Date: Saturday, April 22nd from 9 am- 10:30 am.
Cost: FREE
Ages : K – 8
Summer #STEAMSaturdays
If you are ready to jump right into our #STEAMSaturdays classes, great! Your scholar(s) will get to experience a hands-on activity from one of our series of interactive Digi-Bins. These activities allow students to explore and play in a constructive way while learning about Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math.
They also get to learn the foundations of coding by using to our online activities portal! We spend part of every class exploring online and working in programs that help introduce your children to (or continue their training in) the concepts of coding.
We have 3 Summer locations: Huntersville, Plaza Midwood, and West Charlotte.
We want this experience to be as flexible as possible for your family, so we are now offering individual Saturdays. That means you can sign up for just 1 or 2 specific Saturdays if you need to work around other Summer plans,  or you can go ahead and register for all 6 Saturdays offered!
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Locations : Hygge Coworking West, Advent Coworking , and Birkdale Offices

Dates : 6 Saturdays from May 6 – June 10
(5 Saturdays, May 6 – June 3 at Advent Coworking)
 
Time : 9 – 10:30 am
Cost : $25 per Saturday
Register now on our site by clicking here.
 
Feel free to reach out to Kelly@digi-bridge.org with any questions.
Stay cool out there!
Cheers,
DJ

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Winter 16-17