RCCS Youth Hack Jam –
A New Hero Emerges

Kin Ming Li

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Youth Hack Jam Group Photo

Technology. Education. Youth. Webmaker is a glorious opportunity to meld the three together. The two of us brothers, Kin Ming Li and Ho Ming Li have been around the technology scene and had been working with youths as a scout leader for many years. We love technology. We love making and hacking the web in a fun, friendly, non-intrusive way. The concept of open web immediately garners our attention and we really want to be a part of it.

HOW IT HAPPENED

We recently reunited with our good friend, Helen Lee, and learned of the webmaker initiative along with the readily available webmaker tools. Cool stuff! Let’s use them to teach youths how to take part in the open web. With the help of Dethe Elza at Mozilla YVR, we facilitated a hack jam titled “A New Hero Emerges” couple weeks ago.

A NEW HERO EMERGES

For this hack jam, we have invited around 20 energetic youths from RCCS Youth Group to participate and learn about the web in a fun engaging way. We were once youths, and we actively engage youths in many of our activities, so we knew exactly what they’re into – gaming. Games are a big part of their life. A mega-popular game, League of Legends (LoL) by Riot Games captured plenty loyal fans in recent years. In each LoL game, each player chooses a game character known as a champion with its own unique set of skills, and two teams are formed, 5 on 5, to battle it out with the ultimate goal of destroy the other team’s home base. There are many champions for the players to choose from and more are introduced as Riot Games releases new champions from time to time to keep the gamers excited. That’s where we found our core theme for the hack jam. Let’s have the youths come up with their own champion!

The hack jam starts off with brief introduction to the topic and the X-Ray Goggles tool. We demonstrate the capabilities Group Review on Youth's Hacksof the tool, and allow everyone to get familiar with the tool. Not to waste any hacking time, we dive right into remixing existing LoL champion pages with our youths’ very own creative champions. Everyone is encouraged to alter every part of the champion page, from the basic info like names, title, descriptions, to combat statistics such as health points, and attack damage. We also encourage them to remix all the skills and every picture related to the champion. Just imagine all the possibilities! The youth participants put their heads down and type frantically with their fingers, and come up with some truly amazing champions. We have had animal themed champions, cartoon based ones, champions created base on brands, and many more!

Next, after all these unique new champions have been created, we have tasked each individual with using the Thimble tool to create a promotional page for their champion. A few templates are provided, but youths can build their own web page. We introduce Thimble to the group, provide some web making resources, and continue to hack the new champions together with good promotion materials.

Nicholas Lee with his creation - Penguin Boss

Why did we ask for the promotional page to be created? That is because each of the youths have to promote their own champion to the group! We have all the youths give a two minute presentation introducing their new champions. We then, as a group, determine which new champion would emerge as the best of the best champions. The undisputed favorite for the evening was the “Penguin Boss” hacked together by Nicholas Lee, president of RCCS Youth group. He has won himself the hidden prize of a cool gift card. The award ceremony brought the group into a frenzy, clapping and cheering for the president, as the event draws near its end.

HOW YOUTHS FELT

We are always looking to improve our event, regarding the choice of theme or the method of delivery to the participants. We therefore asked for the all important feedback from the youths. The comments that came back were all very positive. It feels very rewarding, and really motivates us to continue creating events similar to this. Be on the lookout for us hosting a similar event in the future.

“Fun and interesting, good environment to learn something new.”– Sherlock Lau
“Funnest learning experience of my life” – Nicholas Lee
“Great learning environment, fun course material, highly recommend” – Billy Leung

 

THANK YOU

Thanks to everyone who participated. Hope you enjoyed yourselves, and it really looked like you did. Thanks to our sponsors RCCS Youth for the gifts, and Mozilla YVR for being the host to a great work area. We most definitely enjoyed this opportunity to interact, engage, and work together with youths to teach them about the open web.

There’ll definitely be more to come. Next one will be more exciting, more fun, and more awesome. Bigger and better, up up and away we go…

CONTACTS

For more info regarding the RCCS Youth Group, you can browse their website at http://youth.rccs.ca ,and contact them on twitter @RCCSYouth

As for us, the organizers of the event, you can find us with our twitters below.

Kin Ming Li @KinZeroLi
Ho Ming Li @HoReaL

RRU Hosts Online Popcorn Hack Jam

hlee

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After continued success of delivering f2f Popcorn Maker hack jams for faculty & staff at Royal Roads University (where I work), some of my colleagues urged me to organize & deliver a purely only Hack Jam on Blackboard Collaborate, our online teaching space that we’ve used for many of our faculty development workshops & online courses.

We actually ran the workshop twice, the first time as a “dry run” for our CTET (Centre for Teaching & Educational Technologies) team back on August 22 so we could test out the timing of how the workshop flowed for participants where they didn’t have any f2f assistance from multiple facilitators.

Many of our team members who attended the dry run gave us great feedback, so we tweaked a few things in the activity outline & adjusted the timing of certain activities before we actually delivered the official faculty hack jam last week, on September 26.

Prior to the faculty hack jam, we had a great turnout for the number of registrants, mostly because my wonderful colleague Amanda delivered a “Learning Communities” workshop on campus to kick off our Learning and Teaching Model Workshop Series for faculty, and during her workshop, she invited Eva, an instructor in our Conflict Analysis & Management Program who used Popcorn Maker as a tool for students to build a learning community.  She even showcased some Popcorn Maker videos that her students made.

CTET FLM

Check out how @RRUCTET is using #popcornmaker in #highered (00:50:40-01:09:15) http://livestre.am/4BSaO via @livestream #teachtheweb

On the day of the Online Hack Jam, we had approximately 20 people in the Collaborate Room, which is the same capacity to a f2f Hack Jam. However, the main differences between a f2f workshop and an online hack jam are:

  • Participants did their “Popcorn” prep-work prior to the workshop (i.e. pre-register for a webmaker/persona account)
  • Participants are asked to watch the Popcorn Tutorial prior to attending the workshop
  • Participants are given a 30 mins optional Q&A session prior to the official start of the workshop so facilitators can assist them with creating their own popcorn accounts as well as questions regarding navigating in Collaborate.
  • During the Design Challenge (i.e. hands-on activity), facilitators attend to participants by going into different “breakout rooms” in Collaborate

We also had Melanie from our Copyright Office discuss one of the major concerns faculty had about using Popcorn Maker, which is (yes you’ve guessed it) Copyright! She shared her wisdom about what materials are good to use and what should be avoided.  It was extremely helpful since at every single hack jam we’ve delivered so far, the concerns about Copyright has always been raised & discussed.

Overall, I’d say the workshop went really well and most people enjoyed the hack jam in an online environment. Here are some cool projects participants made during the Design Challenge.  Pretty awesome considering they did it during an online webinar and was only allowed 25 minutes.  🙂

We are currently talking about the possibility of doing a “canned version” of the workshop but we are still sorting out the details.

Last but not least, here are the resources we used for the Online Popcorn Maker Hack Jam.

Maker Party 2013

emma.irwin

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Introducing Maker Party

 

From June 15 to September 15, thousands of people around the world are meeting up, making cool stuff and teaching others at the 2013 Maker Party.

Last summer in BC, we held two sold-out events: Victoria Kids Hackjam And Mozilla Popcorn Hackjam

These events, and the global Webmaker movement led to more local hackjams, conversation, and the formation of the BC Webmakers forum:   dedicated to bringing Web and Digital literacy programs to BC Youth.

Moving consumers of technology to makers, inventors and directors!

If you are a youth leader, educator,  technologist – or anyone interested in getting some kids together for a hackjam this summer, you’ll find us on the BC Webmaker list!   Post a message to find supporters and collaborators.

Watch this space for more information on events!

*Join BC Webmaker’s Email List 
* Checkout the G+  Global Webmaker Community

MozillaYVR rocks at #teachtheweb at Vancouver Mini Maker Faire

hlee

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Over the weekend (June 1 & 2), MozillaYVR volunteers organized and rocked at #teachtheweb at this year’s Vancouver Mini Maker Faire.

Saturday morning started off with Dethe settling everyone down at our booth and then presenting his personal project Waterbear to kick off the VMMF speaker series. Early in the morning, the Mozilla booth already had great traffic. Jeff, Sandie, Nick, Andy & Roland were instrumental in interacting with faire participants. Asking them to come up to the iMac to take headshots, and incorporating those images as part of their Popcorn Maker projects! Emma came all the way from Sooke to volunteer at VMMF along with her 2 girls Molly & Daisy. What a trooper!

There were countless presentations and awesome stuff at VMMF. It is hardly “mini” at all! Just to highlight some of the cool stuff captured by Roland, here’s a slideshow!

As you can see, the competition at VMMF was fierce! Thanks to our awesome Mozilla volunteers (plus cool swag), kids, families and adults were interacting & web-making away using all 3 webmaker tools. Kids loved to “hack” their favourite websites using X-ray Goggles and adults loved creating their own mash-up videos using Popcorn Maker.

Sabrina shows kids some of our awesome webmaker tools!

Mavis shows VMMF participants webmaker tools

Sunday was a busy day as well, we were joined by Erik, Yvan, Dethe & his son Azlen (the youngest programmer I’ve ever met!). Emma & I were busy preparing for our 1pm talk, again as part of the VMMF speaker series, we did a short presentation on Mozilla Webmaker Tools.

After the presentation, quite a few people were interested in learning more about the tools, including a young lady named Rose, also a web developer, who was interested in getting more involved and becoming a webmaker mentor for young girls in her community! We also had a dad with his kids who approached us, who signed up to our WebmakerBC mailing list because he wants to register his kids for local hack jams if we host any in the near future!

All in all, MozillaYVR volunteers couldn’t have done a better job at #teachtheweb. Folks ranging from kids, parents, educators and community leaders all were blown away by the power of the tools, and more importantly, by the awesome-ness of our volunteers! Thanks to everyone who got involved! We couldn’t have done anything without you! 🙂

MozillaYVR preps to #teachtheweb at Vancouver Maker Faire

hlee

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As part of our preparation to #teachtheweb at Vancouver Maker Faire this weekend, MozillaYVR had a Kitchen Table style hack jam (with pizza of course!) on our own on May 28.

We started off with hot pizza & broke down to our best 80’s Dance Moves as the ice breaker.  (sorry, no pictures were taken for this part due to our Dance Moves being too awesome for the camera).  :p

Then, a speed-dating style Webmaker Tool mini-challenges series started!  With the first contestant being X-Ray Goggles.  Participants came up with their “ideal date” by hacking a webpage featuring their ideal date.  We wanted to share this but unfortunately the X-ray Goggles’s publish function failed on us that night…  I’ve confirmed that by the time of this blog post, the publish function is back on and hopefully it would work during Maker Faire. 🙂

Sticking with the theme of speed dating, our second webmaker contestant was Thimble and participants were asked to create a profile page about themselves or about their ideal date.  I gotta say, these are some pretty creative looking profile pages made using Thimble.

Last by not least, we have Popcorn Maker!  Participants were asked to create a fun project featuring their personal hobby/interests.

Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift again, somebody’s a fan?!

Silly hacking with cats

Dating tips from Harold & Maude

Dating tips from Harold & Maude

Jetpack, hoot hoot!

Jetpack, hoot hoot!

If you are interested in finding out more about this speed-dating hack jam session, here are some resources available:

Royal Roads University Faculty “Pops” Higher-ed Courses

hlee

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Earlier this week at my work (Royal Roads University), Emma (awesome #yyj Mozilla Rep), Sandra (Instructional Designer) and I (Helen, E-Learning Tech) hosted a Faculty Popcorn Maker Hack Jam on behalf of our unit – Centre for Teaching & Educational Technology for all of our faculty members.  We had a mixture of attendees, ranging from core & associate faculty, program staff, library researchers and instructional designers.

We started off with a Poster Mosaic ice breaker asking everyone “What is hacking/remixing?”.

what is hacking/remixing poster mosaic

What is hacking/remixing Poster Mosaic

Everyone was eager to jump into the hands-on part of the hack jam, so the Popcorn Maker Design Challenge began while facilitators floated around to assist participants.

Sandra assists faculty with Popcorn Maker

Sandra assists faculty with Popcorn Maker

Hack Jam design challenge

Participants jumping into the Hack Jam design challenge

Participants were asked to bring in videos & multimedia files that they use in their courses and “remix” them using Popcorn Maker.  Here are some of the projects that were created at the end of the session:

Unethical Research

Most faculty members were interested in learning how to “spice course videos up” using Popcorn Maker while others even embedded courses right into Moodle (RRU’s Learning Management System)!

Remix of a TED Talk video

I Have a Dream

Well, course videos were mostly kind of serious, but we also had a few video projects that were funny, personal & experimental.

Video about Vanilla Ice

Girl Singing

The hack jam wrapped up with a group discussion on how Popcorn Maker can be applied in everyday courses.

Final Discussion

Share-out & Discussion

The overall hack jam feedback was extremely positive.  Many faculty expressed interests in incorporating Popcorn Maker in their upcoming courses, whether as a tool to annotate course videos or as an option for student projects.  The possibilities are endless!

Last but not least, if you are interested in using this hack jam for your own community/class, please feel free to hack/remix the following resources.  🙂

Hack Jam Resources:

Webmakers are going to Vancouver Mini Maker Faire!

hlee

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It is with great excitement that we announce to everyone – Mozilla Webmakers are going to Vancouver Mini Maker Faire!!  For those of you who are not familiar with Maker Faires, it’s a global annual faire where all “makers” gather and geek out! The event takes place on June 1-2, 10am-6pm at PNE.

In collaboration with the folks from the Vancouver Mozilla office, we will have a group booth over the span of the faire where we feature Mozilla Webmaker tools (Popcorn, X-ray Goggles, Thimble) as well as (fingers crossed) some of the new FirefoxOS phones to get hands-on with.  Volunteers from the Vancouver Mozilla office will also assist with manning the booth.

The story (short version) of how we got involved in Maker Faire and all of this came to fruition:

  • Emma & Helen really wanted to present Mozilla Webmaker tools at the Vancouver Mini Maker Faire, so they decided to do a “call out” to the folks at the MozillaYVR office and see if there might be any takers who are willing to help out.
  • Dethe (who is super awesome) has volunteered to help out.  Not only that, he also invited colleagues from the MozillaYVR office, so now we have at least 4-5 volunteers from the MozillaYVR office (yoo hoo!)
Dethe

Dethe & his Awesome ideas!

  • Together they submitted a proposal to the Maker Faire organizations and got accepted.  (double yoo hoo!!)
  • Helen, Emma & Dethe have met both online & f2f.  On April 16, Helen visited Dethe at the MozillaYVR office.  It was such a cool space~

MozillaYVR office

  • Helen & Dethe talked about facilitating a Kitchen Table Hack Jam for all the MozillaYVR volunteers who will be helping out at the Vancouver Mini Maker Faire so everyone is up to date on the Webmaker tools.  The tentative date is a day in end of May at the MozillaYVR office.  (more details TBD)

Anyways, we would really love for more WebmakerBC folks to come help out at the Vancouver Mini Maker Faire this year because we think it’s gonna be awesome!  Here are the details again:

  • What: Vancouver Mini Maker Faire – Mozilla Webmaker Hack Jam
  • When: June 1-2 @10am-6pm
  • Where: PNE
  • Why: We will demo and have a hands-on booth area for webmaker tools Popcorn Maker (create video mashups in the browser), Thimble (easy webpage editor) and the Hackasurus X-Ray Goggles (explore and remix any web page). We will have a variety of Hacktivity Kits with tutorials and challenges. Participants will get a chance to explore the tools, create a multimedia project, and share their work online with the rest of the existing webmaker community.

 

Victoria Webmaker Mentor Hackjam

emma.irwin

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Are you interested in empowering kids and youth? An Educator exploring web and digital literacy? Maybe you’re a techie wanting to learn more about Mozilla’s cool Webmaker tools? Hackers, makers, and ‘Open’ advocates are all welcome to our first Webmaker Mentor Hackjam!

Tuesday May 7th 7:00 PM, St. Margaret’s School, Victoria BC

We’ll explore Mozilla’s Webmaker tools: Hackasaurus, Thimble and Popcorn Maker – learn more about our Hacktivity kits. AND we’ll discuss Mozilla’s #teactheweb MOOC happening right now! (yes, you can still sign-up!)

We’re setting this night aside to just have fun making stuff on the web!

Join us!

The session will be held in the Junior School Building, comuter lab on the Second Floor. Stay right as you enter the school grounds and park in the lot below the gym, the Junior School Building is at the far end of that parking lot

New Webmaker BC Forum

emma.irwin

 

In the summer of 2012, a few like-minded Webmakers in BC organized two Mozparty events: Victoria Hackjam – Hackasaurus! & Mozilla Popcorn Hackjam.

Both events received more than positive feedback from the local community. Kids, parents & volunteers with diverse backgrounds in education, web development, film making, government & beyond got involved!

In order to stay connected and collaborate creatively for future events, projects & opportunities, we have created a new Mozilla Webmaker BC distribution list.

Please join & grow with us!