A few weeks ago, I was lucky enough to be involved with the DigiGirlz Tech Camp in Charlotte, NC. I love it when I get the opportunity to be at a DigiGirlz event because I’m so passionate about piquing girls’ interest in technology. Over at Diverse, there’s a great article about the Charlotte camp.
In the article, Catherine Ashcraft, a senior research scientist at the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT), says that young girls often have preconceived ideas of what a technologist should look like, and they often feel that they don’t fit the profile. I love that I get a chance to show girls that these stereotypes are based on an archaic view of technology. So much has changed in the world of technology! You do a lot of work in teams and you’re creatively solving problems.
For this Tech Camp, I did a session on SQL. Normally SQL isn’t the first technology that would pop into your mind to teach to girls. When your SQL database is full of cute boys and it’s their job to find the perfect one for them using SQL statements, it works perfectly! Since this session was powered by Azure, I spent some time talking about the cloud and what it means for them before diving into SQL statements.
Using the Dating Game format, I was able to introduce the concept of relational databases and do some activities that showed how to query the database using different kinds of SELECT and JOIN statements. If you want to teach SQL using the Dating Game, you can! Thanks to Lynn Langit (@llangit) and Llewellyn Falco (@isidore_us), the Dating Game is available on Codeplex.
I want to extend a huge thank you to all the event organizers and volunteers! These events rely on your passion!
Want to be a DigiGirl too? Check out DigiGirlz Days and DigiGirlz Tech Camps!
3 Comments Add yours
What was the reaction of the girls to the Dating Game? I’m guessing (despite my personal discomfort about the content) it keeps the girls really engaged?
During the session the girls were extremely engaged, learning and answering/asking questions while exploring the database. I didn’t see any other web pages open, but the one we were working on! The ranking wasn’t as high as I expected, but I think the content moved a little slow for this group; they were really bright!