Recent research found that girls, as early as the age 6, start to doubt their abilities, and think boys are smarter and brighter. This finding is so disturbing.
The study stresses the importance of early intervention for young girls. Girl Who Code are doing just that. There mission is to build the largest pipeline of future female engineers in the United States. They’ve created a free after-school, and summer immersion programs for 6th – 12th grade girls. Volunteers facilitate clubs all over the country. Girls learn about computer science by developing a website, app or AI that addresses a problem relevant to the club or it’s community.
A colleague asked me to present to the club she organizes at Evergreen Park Library. Although, I am not a computer engineer or developer, I do have extensive experience in the development of website and apps.
In my day job as a interaction designer, I am responsible for creating every element on a screen that you would tap, double click or swipe. Every interaction that you have with a website or app has been (hopefully) planned by an interaction designer. It’s my job to define a structure and behavior of an interactive system to ensure you, the user, has a smooth, meaningful experience.
There were four 7th and 8th grade girls that attended. I was enamored with these girls abilities. They were all very confident, and open to each other’s ideas. Together we worked on a user flow for a fictitious app. With paper, pencils and a mock iPhone my husband cut out with a CNC machine, the girls individually created a paper prototype of their design.
We spent sometime reviewing and comparing their design solutions. The girls were not only able to present and articulated their solutions, they were able to implement their design ideas into paper prototypes.