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Girls’ Programming Network – BopIT game development

Monday, 11 November 2019

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Our last GPN for 2019 was held over the weekend with 70 registrations for this coding day. GPN has grown and now operates out of Sydney, Canberra, Perth, Adelaide, Mackay and Cairns. With Melbourne coming on board soon. The program is for high school aged students who want to venture forth, learn how to code in python with no prior experience, meet some wonderful women, share stories and create.

For our last Saturday, we took the girls through the basics of python, the fundamentals of a Micro: bit and the Grok Learning platform. Newer students worked through the base workbook developing BopIT on a micro: bit with arrows indicating what button they had to press (A or B) or if they had to shake it. Scores were kept.

Our regular girls went on to explore the extension activities. By adding wires, alfoil and ‘junk material’ to the Micro: bit, the girls made ‘buttons’ that could be pushed, turned or pulled depending on BopIT like instruction. If they got the answer correct, the micro: bits were coded to display a smiley or a sad face, then at the end of the game they were given a score total.

Other activities that occurred during the day included the creation of squishy circuits. The salty playdough was used to create simple designs that highlighted logic gates. LED’s were used to indicate the competed circuit. Since GPN is all about fun whilst learning, some took it one step further and created 3D designs.

Thanks to the GPN Coordinating team, the day was a great success. The team included:

  • GPN Coordinating Team:  Caitlin Bathgate, Sheree Pudney, and Dr Michelle Ellis.
  • ECU student mentors and tutors: Janae Weiss, Rochelle Gotico, Cherie Barringhaus, Dianne Villaneuva, Morium Mustafa, Alyssa Booth, Poojan Sharma, Megan Usher, Hira Maqbool, Julia Syzmanski.
  • UWA PhD student mentors and tutors: Lauren Gee and Manou Rosenberg.
  • WA teachers: Michelle Chomiak, Petra Trinke Lu Zang and Karen Alford.
  • Industry representatives: Crishell Monteleagre, Fui Wern Chow, Caitlin Bathgate and Sheree Pudney.

We look forward to seeing many more GPN days in the New Year!

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