Hi and welcome to our blog!
We (Malene and Kat!) are really excited to share all of our weekly adventures with you.
If you landed on this post, you may already know that Kids In Tech (KIT) is a community of tech leaders building & facilitating STEAM curriculum for elementary schools in at-risk neighbourhoods in Toronto, Canada.
Why did we start this initiative?
We think STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art, and math) is awesome and vital in early childhood learning, and we want to give EVERY kid the opportunity to access it. That’s it!
After many conversations over coffee (and chocolate cake on the more intense days), we realized that in order to accomplish such a huge task, we had to be able to reach the hundreds of kids who:
a) are not aware of the technology industry and what it has to offer
b) don’t have easy access to technology at home
c) are unable to attend private programs outside of school
So we decided to approach the public school system. In late November 2015, we became an approved partner of the Toronto District School Board (TDSB) and established our first pilot program teaching Gamemaking for Digital Stories at Nelson Mandela Park Public School in Regent Park. The program will run from January-April 2016, and we will continue to work with principals & teachers on how we can seamlessly integrate our programs into the curriculum.
What matters to us moving forward:
Being 100% transparent
We want to provide exciting learning opportunities in the classroom. Our weekly blog posts will feature everything we teach in the classroom and their outcomes – including all the “Wow, that was great!!” moments, and the “Hmm..I think it’d be better if…” moments. By doing this, we hope to engage the tech and education communities in conversations about accessibility and making STEAM more integrated into Ontario’s curriculum.
Making access to opportunity our #1 goal
There are 450+ elementary schools in the Toronto District School Board and 150+ of them are identified “model schools.” A model school is defined by having a number of students who face challenges like poverty and language barriers that can affect how well they do in the classroom. Technology is here for good and we think every kid deserves a chance to be a part of it.
In a nutshell… we’re really excited about KIT and what it will do for the city of Toronto and the province of Ontario. If you’re into it too, follow us on Twitter, comment on this post, or send us an email! We’d love to hear what you think.
Malene and Kat