Educational Coursework

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#ActivateSummer is Here! Donate to “Seed a Series.”

Friends of Digi-Bridge,

It’s daunting sometimes to look at today’s scholars and envision their futures. What skills will they need? What jobs will be available to them? Will they be prepared? Consider this …

  • Nine in ten parents want their child to study computer science, but only one in four schools teaches computer programming.
  • Computing makes up 2/3 of projected new jobs in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math).
  • Computing occupations are among the highest-paying jobs for new graduates. Yet, fewer than 3 percent of college students graduate with a degree in computer science, and only 8 percent of STEM graduates are in computer science. –Source data

Today, July 16, marks the launch of Digi-Bridge’s 2018 #ActivateSummer mid-year giving campaign. This campaign will run through July 30. Will you consider donating? 

The solutions to tomorrow’s challenges lie untapped in the minds of our scholars today. #ActivateSummer campaign manifested to tap into the minds of our scholars and prime them to compete in tomorrow’s digital landscape.

Digi-Bridge and our supporters unwaveringly believe that every learner deserves access to quality instruction that will equip them with 21st century skills necessary to pursue careers in the world’s digital future.

The goal for 2018 #ActivateSummer campaign is to raise $5,000.

This year, your gifts will allow Digi-Bridge to “Seed a Series.” Your donations will be utilized to develop a new Digi-Bin series that focuses on fostering scholars’ skills in object-oriented programming (coding).

Through your gift to #ActivateSummer, Digi-Bridge will develop approximately 7.5 hours of curriculum and that will be used to serve thousands – literally thousands – of Digi-Bridge scholars.

Will you join us today in our efforts to “Seed a Series”? You can make your secure gift here

Thank you, in advance, for your consideration. Let’s #ActivateSummer!

Cheers,

DJ

P.S. – Please share news of your commitment on social media using #ActivateSummer!

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#STEAMSaturdays Summer Edition

Friends of Digi-Bridge-

With one month of summer vacation in the books and 4th of July fireworks in the rearview mirror, scholars in Charlotte are hitting that point where being back in school with friends and a routine isn’t such a bad thing.

It’s also about the time when parents may be concerned about their scholars losing important knowledge and skills acquired during the previous school year … and with good reason.

A study by Brookings Institution focusing on summer learning loss concluded that on average, students’ achievement scores declined over summer vacation by one month’s worth of school-year learning, declines were sharper for math than for reading, and the extent of loss was larger at higher grade levels.

But there are ways to help prevent summer learning loss. One way is by attending programs like Digi-Bridge’s #STEAMSaturdays (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics). These weekly 90-minute courses for K-8th graders are taught by qualified facilitators and focus on science, engineering, teamwork and creativity.

Using LEGO Education WeDo 2.0 curriculum, scholars are challenged to build, create and program characters such as Milo the Science Rover. During each session scholars are encouraged to become stronger problem solvers, grow literacy and math skills, expand creativity and bring ideas to life.

“I like coming in on Saturday because we get to build stuff,” said rising 3rd-grader Heaven, 9, after her first #STEAMSaturdays session. “I like building and then making it work!”

An hour and a half of LEGO play during #STEAMSaturdays can inspire creative play long after the courses are done. After building Milo the Science Rover, your scholar can take the experience home and draw pictures, build accompanying characters, read more about what made it work.

Do you know a scholar who would benefit from some summer fun? Sign up today for #STEAMSaturdays. There are five sessions remaining: 7/14, 7/21, 7/28, 8/4 and 8/11.

Sessions are $25 and sessions are held from 9-10:30 a.m. at:

Hygge Coworking West (2128 Remount Rd. in Charlotte)

The Hurt Hub@Davidson College (210 Delburg St. in Davidson)

Looking forward to learning by doing with your scholar soon. Together, we will #ReachOurFuture!

Cheers,

DJ

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It’s time for a Daddy Daughter Code-In! Tickets on sale now.

Friends of Digi-Bridge-

It’s with great enthusiasm that I share news of our expanded partnership with Google Fiber Charlotte. This year, in addition to sponsoring The Swarm, our competition programming and robotics team, Google Fiber is the presenting sponsor for four Code-In events!

This first Daddy Daughter Code-In (#DDCodeIn) of 2018 will be held at the Google Fiber Event Space from 7 pm-8:30 pm on Saturday, June 2nd. We will have fun in (and with) the sun. If you’ve attended a Code-In before, expect more of the same great STEAM experiences with a few really AWESOME new additions. Of course, there will be cotton candy.

Only 35 duo tickets available, so snag your tickets today

While we are making progress to ensure women are represented in STEM, a 2017 jobs report reminded us of just how much work needs to be done. We learned that while women fill 47 percent of all U.S. jobs, they only hold about 24 percent of STEM jobs. Likewise, women constitute slightly more than half of college educated workers but make up only 25 percent of college educated STEM workers.

It is stifling statistics like these that Digi-Bridge intends to shift not only to support females, but also to stimulate technology growth on a universal level.

Digi-Bridge is excited to host this community event at Google Fiber’s home here in Charlotte. This evening is an opportunity for young ladies and the important men in their lives (fathers, brothers, uncles, cousins, grandfathers, role models, etc.) to connect and explore technology.

Much like a traditional “Daddy Daughter” dance, the Code-In will be an event filled with food, music and fresh tech-centric activities. Digi-Bridge knows that girls code, too, and looks forward to supporting and encouraging the next generation of female leaders in STEM.

Looking forward to seeing dads and daughters on June 2! That link once more is www.digi-bridge.org/events.

Cheers,

DJ

Please know, Digi-Bridge aims to remove all barriers to access. If financial assistance is needed, simply reach out to Torie@digi-bridge.org.

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Guest Blog: Ashley Park 8th Grader Treshawn Pickett

In 2017, Digi-Bridge forged a partnership with Opera Carolina, thanks to support from OrthoCarolina. Together, we developed a Digi-Bin series that goes “Behind the Scenes” to explore STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics) connections in opera. 

At the conclusion of the series, scholars attended their first opera performance, The Marriage of Figaro. Below, read reflections from Treshawn, an 8th grade #STEAMSaturdays scholar at Ashley Park PreK-8. 

Before visiting the opera I honestly thought it would be people randomly singing. I also thought it was going to be boring and hard to understand. I was actually impressed that it was very different than what I expected.

During #STEAMSaturdays at Ashley Park, we began diving into some Digi-Bins that had to do with music production. We worked on bins such as costume design, lighting, acting and even production setup. My favorite bins were the costume design and lighting. I could really identify what we were learning to what I want to do in my career. I want to be a fashion designer so it was cool to see how colors and costumes set the mood for different scenes and atmospheres.

The storyline for “The Marriage of Figaro” itself was so interesting. I would have never imagined that I could gather a story from just music and singers. Now that I know more about the opera scenes and what goes on behind stage, I can see myself using this in real life.

It’s really inspiring to see how I can use my love for fashion in so many different ways. I loved

seeing how makeup, costumes, and lighting played such a huge role in the opera and keeps the audience engaged. Those characters with different dresses and more bling were more regal.

I learned that there are so many jobs that go into creating a musical production, and I can put myself in multiple positions from just seeing one opera. I cannot wait to see another one!

Thank you to my teachers, Ms. Hobson and Ms. Newton, for getting us there on time. Thank you Opera Carolina and OrthoCarolina for the opportunity to go behind the scenes!

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Spring into #STEAMSaturdays!

Friends of Digi-Bridge-

I hope this message finds all of you well! Though the weather wouldn’t agree, Digi-Bridge has already sprung into action with Spring #STEAMSaturdays. Courses are currently underway at  Hygge Coworking in West Charlotte and Northpointe Offices in Huntersville.

We have seats available at both locations on March 17 and 24 from 9-10:30am. Remember, there is no prior building or programming knowledge required. Each scholar has the opportunity to begin each course at their learning level.

March 17th – Emphasis on Coding – Scholars will build and program a pulling robot to complete a challenging task.

March 24th – Building and Coding – Scholars will build and program a wireless car and perfect the programming to successfully complete an obstacle course.

Register your scholar today at digi-bridge.org/courses for only $25. Together, we will #ReachOurFuture by creating innovators!

Cheers,

DJ

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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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2,068 in 2017: we will #ReachOurFuture!

Friends,

That’s right, thanks to the support of our community we served 2,068 scholars with hands-on 21st century learning in 2017!

We at Digi-Bridge are grateful to look back on 2017 as a year of significant progress towards bridging the digital divide.

This year, Digi-Bridge has:

  • Grown our #STEAMSaturdays family by adding two more sites – Briarwood Academy and Montclaire Elementary
  • Hosted four community Code-In events with the help of Google Fiber, including our first ever #FamilyCodeIn
  • Surpassed our fundraising goals with two different giving campaigns – #ActivateSummer and #GivingTuesdayCLT
  • Launched our second successful Robotics Squad programming, this time at Renaissance West Community Initiative
  • Renewed our commitment to computer science education for all students (#CSForAll)
  • Created new educational partnerships with other passionate organizations, including Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts and Culture, Freedom School Partners, Cabarrus County Libraries, Opera Carolina and Brookstone Schools

We’ve made tremendous progress this year and look forward to continuing this work in 2018!

How can you help us Reach Our Future?

  • Head to digi-bridge.org/reach-our-future to learn more
  • Click here to join our mailing list
  • Follow us on all social media at @DigiBridgeUS to stay updated

Tonight, 2,068 scholars in Charlotte are going to sleep with newfound knowledge and skill thanks to you! Together, we will #ReachOurFuture.

With tremendous gratitude,

DJ

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You made #GivingTuesdayCLT a huge success!

Friends,

Wow! We at Digi-Bridge are blown away by the support from our community during #GivingTuesdayCLT. We raised $10,214, exceeding our goal! Here’s how that breaks down:

  • $6714 in individual gifts
    • Including $1915 in gifts made as a part of a three year commitment to Reach Our Future
  • $2500 as a match committed by Tresata
  • $1000 as a match committed by OrthoCarolina Foundation

As a reminder, these funds go directly to providing 21st century learning opportunities to Charlotte’s K-8 scholars in the form of hands-on STEAM learning, robotics and computer programming.

If you were unable to give yesterday, know that we’re still eager to engage you! The Reach Our Future campaign, which aims to raise $1M in a year to keep these opportunities available to our scholars for the next three years, will run until next November. You can learn more and make your gift here.

Thank you for your commitment to Digi-Bridge on Giving Tuesday. Now, let’s Reach Our Future!

With gratitude,

DJ

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Our First Code-In for the Whole Family!

Friends,

You asked. Digi-Bridge listened. Our team is very excited to invite each of you to our first ever Family Code-In! Together with Google Fiber, we are hosting a Code-In event for the whole family on Saturday, December 2nd, from 7-8:30 p.m., complete with music, food, a photo booth and STEAM challenges that will engage the whole family.

Fundamentally, the purpose of the Code-Ins has always been to create a support system around scholars and their interest in STEAM. The K-8 years are vital in growing and maintaining our scholars’ interest in these disciplines that are shaping our collective futures.

At this Code-In, we’ll be taking on a LEGO bridge-building challenge, creating animations with Scratch coding and building three-dimensional, symmetrical snowflakes.

We know that scholars engage – and stay engaged – when they’re inspired, supported, challenged and having fun. That’s what this #FamilyCodeIn is all about: not just building bridges or snowflakes, but building a lifetime of curiosity and learning.

Tickets are $10 per person and families of four or more pay $40. If you have any questions, please email zach@digi-bridge.org.

Come join us on Saturday, December 2nd for a family night out where creativity and code collide!

We can’t wait to see what you create together.

Cheers!

DJ

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Thanks for connecting with us at #TBT 3.0!

Friends of Digi-Bridge,

We had a totally tubular time last night at #TBT 3.0. A big thank you to all who joined us! We were so pleased to have spent the evening with you as we kicked off our Reach Our Future campaign.

At its core, Reach Our Future is about coming together as a community to ensure that the scholars who live here have access to the tools and opportunities they need to thrive and build a better tomorrow. We are so thankful to have the support of our community behind us in making this commitment.

We’re still going through the photos of all the rad 80’s outfits we saw. The winner of a brand new Amazon Echo will be determined by social voting, so head over to Instagram, Facebook and Twitter so you can share and like photos from the event. Don’t forget to tag us @DigiBridgeUS and use our hashtag, #ReachOurFuture, so we’re sure to see you! Once we post an album with all of the photos, you will have one week to vote.

As we mentioned last night, the Reach Our Future campaign is about offering high-quality programming to all scholars in our community and strengthening our voice in rooms where policies are made. And we can’t do it without you.

We need your support to amplify our reach. Please share our campaign widely, encourage others to engage, and reach out to us if you have any other ideas about how we accelerate these efforts.

The scholars in this community are our scholars, and investing in them is investing in a future we all share.

We would love to have you join us on this journey. Let’s #ReachOurFuture!

With tremendous gratitude and anticipation,

DJ