This past Wednesday, we had our first Girls Who Code club meeting. Girls Who Code is a non-profit that helps organize clubs in schools and community centers that focus on exposing and teaching computer science to girls.
The class consisted of four girls ready to learn computer science. I was responsible for leading the overview of Processing.js. This lesson was very brief overview of drawing simple shapes in Processing.js. It was a live coding session where I coded a simple crescent moon.
I felt that I could've been more articulate and more focused. I definitely have a habit with public speaking where I kinda of jump around topics. I also worried that I was talking over peoples' heads (another tendency of mine when I'm talking about code) or that I was dumbing it down too much.
But the girls seemed engaged and didn't seem turned off by the prospect of coding, so that's good.
Here's an excerpt of my notes, in case you're interested:
background() function call
- computers are dumb and you have to tell them evertyhing
- the background property takes three paramters because Processing uses additive color process
- additive versus subtractive
- R = red, G = green, B = blue
- tells the computer when to stop reading instructions
- some languages don't have semi-colons
coordinate space and
- Processing figures out where to draw things via coordinate space. The X refers to the horizontal plane, the Y refers to the vertical plane
- the computer : "where along which axis do I start drawing this line?"
- for the line function call, you have to tell Processing where on the screen to draw the line (start, end)
- when drawing with Processing, things get drawn on top of each other.
- it's okay to make mistakes! nothing remains broken forever and everything can be fixed, so experiment
- 90% of your bugs will be typos
- 90% of your bugs will be syntax errors