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Code Savvy Connections

Our newsletters highlight a variety of people, organizations, and resources that are doing work to broaden participation and expand equitable and engaging computer science and STEM opportunities. We are honored to work in this space along with so many talented and passionate individuals and want to help bring attention to their work.  

This Week’s Spotlight and Project-Inspiration Theme: Black History Month

Spotlight on Black History! This week’s focus is “Change Makers”

For the next several weeks, we will shine our spotlight specifically on Black History. We recognize that history is a topic that is largely whitewashed and only told from the perspective of people in power to further certain ideas. Black History Month is an important reminder that there are large parts of history that generally go untold in schools, and that should be shared all year long. For the next several weeks, Code Savvy will be focusing on a different aspect of Black History each week and making connections through stories, experiences and achievements, to computer science.

This week, we shine our spotlight on Change Makers, both past and present. A “Change Maker” is someone who is willing to stand up and take steps towards making change for the greater good, even if the cost is high. Black History is filled with important, brave Change Makers in all areas - education, politics, sports, STEM, literature, entertainment, and beyond. During President Biden’s inauguration last week, the world was introduced to 22 year old Amanda Gorman, a Change Maker using the power of poetry to spread her message of learning from our past to help create a brighter tomorrow.

We are inspired by the words and power in Amanda Gorman’s poem. Ms. Gorman closes her poem with the words:

“When day comes we step out of the shade,

aflame and unafraid

The new dawn blooms as we free it

For there is always light,

if only we're brave enough to see it

If only we're brave enough to be it”

These words inspire youth to look for ways to make change, and we believe computer science can be a powerful tool to help students problem solve and share their thoughts and feelings in ways that would not otherwise be possible. This could mean helping students to create new devices or apps to help solve current problems, or it could mean helping students to use computer science to share their feelings in ways that reach a much wider audience.

It is Code Savvy’s goal to continue to help empower and develop the youth of today to become the change makers of tomorrow. As new technologies continue to expand, the jobs today’s students will be entering will call on them to solve problems that have persisted for years, and some that don’t even exist yet. It is critical that students are receiving high quality computer science education, but also learning how to think critically and solve problems like a Change Maker.

For some projects that help students share their feelings, check out these connections between poetry and computer science: Makey Makey’s Draw and Code a Poem Generator, Tynker’s Code a Poem Project, or Trinket’s Writing Poetry in Python Project. If you are looking for an Unplugged option, Code Savvy shared a CS to Go Unplugged Activity around pattern recognition and rhyming!

We encourage you to use your creative genius to create a project that inspires you to be a Change Maker! If you do, please share it with us.

Share Your CS to Go Projects!

How to Share: We invite CS to Go with Code Savvy participants to consider sharing your projects publicly with the Code Savvy and greater #MNCodes community via video with Flipgrid. We can’t wait to see what you create! Please be sure to follow online safety guidelines and get adult permission before sharing. You can find our Privacy Policy here.

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