IT STEM Workshop

IT STEM Workshop


Siew Young
Siew Young
IT STEM Workshop

On 22nd March 2024, the IT STEMPOINT organisation organised an IT workshop at Saint John Henry Newman Catholic School, Stevenage. The purpose of this workshop is to encourage Year 8 and Year 9 girls to take the STEM subjects as their GCSE choice. This is also the current government’s initiatives.

Thirteen Year 8 girls went on this trip and they learned about cloud computing, building a simple website using HTML and manipulating an electronic output device using microbit programming in MIT Scratch environment.

The workshops were delivered by professionals from the IT industries where the trainers/professionals have at least a Degree qualification and they deliver the activities at the workshops.

The person who delivered the microbit session was an electronic engineer and he has been working in collaboration with software engineers and programmers in the past many years. He set up tiny light bulbs, buzzers and switches inside a transparent box where the students could attach their microbit that was installed with a program implemented by the students themselves; using the click and drag technique in Scratch. The trainer was trying to simulate a scenario where a diamond was in a vault and if the diamond was removed from the vault, the light would turn on and buzzer would sound. This is very exciting as the girls have never seen a microbit can be useful in a real-world scenario, that if a thief steals from a vault, there are outputs such as light and sound. The trainer explained that microbit is very useful to demonstrate the input and output concept of programming and of an electronic device.

The person who delivered the cloud computing was someone who has a Computer Science Degree and he is currently working for an IT company. He taught the meaning of cloud computing and tried to involve the students by asking relevant questions. Later he taught the students how to create a website using Hypertext Markup language (HTML). Students learn how to:

  • create different sizes headings
  • add texts
  • add images
  • add external links
  • add background colours
  • add bullet point
  • add colour to text

When the sessions were finished, students filled in an evaluation form and we headed straight back to Bushey Meads School at 3.30pm. The Year 8 girls were so happy with the trip that they even requested to take a group photo before we departed. I am glad that the girls had enjoyed the workshop and it has been a very educational trip indeed.

 

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