Happy Holidays

By Ashok Kasilingam

Few days back, came across a tech related workshop for kids hosted in partnership with Microsoft and UBC. For sure, such workshops will be very useful.

Such workshops will only be the first step. Parents need to get involved in what their kids are learning in such workshops and provide them an environment to make further progress in what they have learned.

I work with co-op students every day, have interviewed many of them over the past few years. We go through 100’s of student’s resume to look for 1 or 2 positions. So practically, how can we screen them, to call for an interview? Everyone will have their school projects listed in their resume.

Answer is, students who have demonstrated their passion for doing personal projects immediately gets the interview opportunity. So let’s talk about personal projects.

If you observe any STEM/technology/coding related training/workshops which are targeted for kids, their main theme would be focused on either/all of the following:

Animation (2D, 3D, gaming) Robotics (embedded, robots, IoT, ML, AI) Visual communication (VR/AR, 3D printing) Website development (HTML, CSS, Javascript)

Why? Because visual outputs attract kids to do the projects passionately. For example, Scratch is a visual programming tool using which kids could create their first animation. Scratch is being practiced in many elementary schools in Metro Vancouver.

Another example would be pygame (a python library) which can be used to create cool games. Gaming is huge among kids. So by asking them to create their own visual outputs (animation or games), kids could slowly be attracted to technology. Everything needs just a start.

So friends, we at TechBytes would like to challenge our kids to create their own cool projects this holiday season. Those who come forward would be given the opportunity to present about their project in our TechBytes session (Feb 23 2019).

Learning begins at home, it’s a continuous process, let’s make an impact together!