MozFest 2014: session proposal deadline extended!

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We’re very excited about this year’s Mozilla Festival (24-26 October, London). It really is true that you can arrive with an idea and leave with a community! You can get an flavour of some of what will be going on through the 11 tracks:

  • Build and Teach the Web – Keep the web wild through hands-on making with innovative tools and teaching the web as a community.
  • Open Web With Things – Escape the limitations of your computer and build the web using sensors, circuits and good old paper and scissors.
  • Web in Your Pocket – Explore opportunities in the booming world of the open web  on mobile. How can  we experiment & tinker to customize our own  experience on our phones?
  • Source Code for Journalism – Design next-generation web solutions to solve critical  issues facing news organizations and help journalism thrive on the open  web.
  • Open Science and the Web – Examine the potential of the open web to re-define how we experiment, analyze and share scientific knowledge.
  • Art and Culture of the Web – An exploration of the programs, practices and inspirations of open and networked digital art forms.
  • Open Badges Lab – Challenge  the conventional system of recognizing skills  and learning. Celebrate achievements from Open Badge creators and  issuers.
  • Hive Learning Networks - Join this lab for people working on building local city  learning networks (Hives) and how they can better globally connect to  share learning  experiences for youth and digital media.
  • Musicians and Music Creators on the Open Web – Play a role and explore what it takes to make music on the open web.
  • Policy & Advocacy – Privacy, Security, and Building the Movement to protect the free and open web.
  • Open Data – Uncover the data on the web and in our world that will help us better inform and organize our communities

If any of those sound like the kind of thing you’d like to run a practical, hands-on session about, we want to hear from you! For your proposal to be the best it can be, it’s worth bearing in mind that we’ll need to hear how you’re going to make your session inclusive, inspiring and inviting. We’ll need real examples as well as some detail on how you plan to structure your session.


Propose a MozFest 2014 session: http://2014.mozillafestival.org/propose


In order to get give people coming back from vacation time to submit session proposals, we’ve decided to extend the submission deadline to Friday 29th August. Those who have their proposals accepted will be notified soon afterwards.

Questions? Problems? Email: festival@mozilla.org

Slovenia, Tokyo, New York: A Maker Party Roundup (Week 5)

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Maker Party By The Numbers:
Total events during Maker Party: 1,830+
Individuals attending Maker Party events:  77,550+
Number of cities hosting Maker Party events: 365+

All over the world we are seeing the awesome effect of people teaching the web with Maker Party. We want to recognize the hard-work of everyone who has been involved teaching web literacy skills, online or offline, so if you have been sharing your skills make sure you claim your Skill Sharing Badge . Let’s take a look at the Maker Party events that inspired us last week:

Pic from Maker Party in Tokyo

Web and Satellite workshop in Tokyo

Here’s what happened last week:

Brooklyn College Community Partnership Teen Makerspace Open House – August 4-14th, New York
This two week long event was the first drop-in teen makerspace in Brooklyn. It brought together 12 high school students, along with Brooklyn College students, BCCP staff, makers and others. Read all about the packed final day of making here or watch the 63 second video below.

India Day of Independence- August 15th, Global
On August 15th individuals everywhere celebrated India’s Day of Independence by participating in an online maker party to make, learn, teach and share the Indian culture, history, and diversity. Find out how it went here.

Web and Satellite Workshop  – August 15th, Tokyo
At this cool party attendees designed characters and stories for the Cansat satellite which was launched on August 15th by the Tokai University Satellite Project. The stories were based on sensor data from the satellite and the actual flight data from the satellite. Get more information here.

Maker Party – August 16th, Slovenia
A small and enthusiastic group gathered at the Center Si.mobil Ljubljana wanting to learn and develop new skills by using the many Webmaker tools. You can see some of what was made here.

Maker Party: Simple HTML for Nonprofits – August 14th, San Francisco
This Maker Party by included hands-on training by Aspiration Tech targeted at nonprofit staff and volunteers that are interested in a better understanding of how to craft effective HTML for Email Newsletters and familiarize themselves with how HTML works. Find out more information.

Makes

Resources

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Community Literacies #4: Happy dances, kitten rescuers and ed jams

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Editor’s Note: Community Literacies is a series about Webmaker’s finest learning resources around the world, and the stories that bring them to life. Have something to share? Get in touch with Kat.

Three new educational creations from Maker Party

For a bit of inspiring reading over a cold smoothie by the pool, we bring you another round of amazing creations from learners and teachers! In the next two installments, we will explore some of the most inspiring teaching materials built for Maker Parties around the world.

This time, we start our adventure with Emma in South Africa by discussing a new remixable lesson plan made for girls at Code for Capetown. We’ll fly to London and meet Dee and Joe to learn about a game that teaches web design through saving kittens in a fantasy world. And we’ll finish our time together by traveling to the heart of Texas to speak to Julia and Karen and hear about their crazy open education party in San Antonio. Let’s get started!

Teaching girls how to hack happy dances in South Africa

Image thanks to Code4CT
teaching kit by Code4CT

In South Africa, the Code For Capetown project aims to help young girls consider careers in tech as exciting and viable options. The program runs over 3 weeks in the summer holidays, and introduces grade 10 and 11 girls in the region to the big world of web development for social impact. And this summer, the Code4CT girls have been learning how to become webmakers together for inspiring results.

“Code4CT girls had been having so much fun discovering how the web works, and actively participating in building web content,” says Director of New Initiatives Emma Dicks, “that we decided to share this with our friends by hosting our own Maker Party! We told each girl she could invite one friend, who she then helped teach basic HTML to using Codecademy, Made with Code and Webmaker resources.”

At the event, friends immediately set to work making memes and learning about HTML tags, and even learned the steps to Pharrell William’s dance Happy for the Hack the Happy Dance activity, followed by an activity by Creative Commons for Kids. “This lead to a great discussion on hacking,” adds Emma. “We asked the girls to talk about when they are allowed to take and change images, and when it is illegal because of copyright.”

What’s next for the Code4CT girls? “After putting together a teaching kit to share what we did at our Maker Party, we also built a full lesson plan to introduce human centered design to a group of young learners,” says Emma. “Both have worked excellently, and we would love to see others use these plans and remix them!” For feedback, makers are invited to share their experience and remixes with Emma on Twitter.

The Human Centered Design teaching kit will soon be available on Webmaker’s Design and Accessibility Literacy page.

Saving all the kittens with code and creativity in London

Image thanks to Erase All Kittens
teaching kit by Erase All Kittens

E.A.K. (Erase All Kittens) is an open source game that teaches kids to code and create on the web by saving kittens with HTML and CSS. Inspired by a teaching activity for the game put together by its creators Joe Dytrych, Dee Saigal and Leonie Van Der Linde at DrumrollHQ in the UK, we got in touch to find out more about all the kitten-saving happening in London.

“We created the activity so that kids can be taught basic coding skills by playing E.A.K. in code clubs, classrooms and at home,” explains Dee. “The pilot version of Erase All Kittens is free online and gives players an introduction to HTML and CSS skills, so we wanted to know more about what the Webmaker community thought of E.A.K, regardless of whether or not they’re already familiar with coding. We’re big fans of Mozilla, so it’s been really great to help out with Maker Party.”

We asked Dee about her experience working with the the teaching activity, and Dee told us she found it to be fairly simple. “I’d used similar methods to create a Cargo Collective website for my own portfolio,” she explains, “so while I didn’t understand some of the code, I was still able to make the teaching kit without experiencing too many problems!”

Because Erase All Kittens is open source, Dee and Joe are looking for others to get involved in the game’s code, too, by helping develop, translate and animate it together. “We are especially looking for help translating the game,” adds Dee, “so as many people as possible can play it! And we’re creating tools to help players build their own levels, which we’ll show off at this year’s Mozfest.” Dee and Joe encourage anyone interested in getting involved to get in touch and start saving those kittens.

The Erase All Kittens teaching activity is now available on Webmaker’s Coding and Scripting Literacy page.

Holding open education jams with Makey Makeys in Texas


teaching kit by Julia Vallera and Karen Smith

While a lot of great webmaking happens online (with kittens!), other great moments happen in-person with a group who has come together to make things for the first time. This summer in San Antonio, Texas, experienced webmakers Karen Smith and Julia Vallera hosted an interactive workshop for the software track at OpenEdJam.

From the beginning, the process was all about openness and sharing. “To prepare for the event, Karen created the kit and asked for collaboration from Mozilla’s #teachtheweb team,” explains Julia. “She also sent it to OpenEdJam as the proposal itself, which was brilliant. The kit is a working example of what participants can do with Webmaker tools, and how the remix function can create a truly open process.”

On the day of the Maker Party, all kinds of making were facilitated. Makey Makeys were brought out, memes were built (and tweeted!) and digital creations of all kinds were shared. When we asked Karen and Julia about their limitations for the event, the main issue was not having enough time to make everything.

“Kits can take a lot of time,” says Julia. “They have a lot of content, and are very well thought-out. 2-3 hours might not be enough to finish one.” Julia suggests creating teaching activities instead, or starting with a basic Thimble starter resource like Meme-Maker or Book Cover, and running with it. “The response to kits was great in San Antonio,” she adds. “Educators loved the Webmaker tools, and they were very excited to learn how easy they are to use.”

How can others get involved with this work? “We would love to see people remix the kit and make changes to it!” says Julia. Makers of all kinds are encouraged to get in touch with Julia and Karen on Twitter to share their own open educational jams.

A big thanks to our featured makers

We end this issue with many e-hugs and skydiving cat gifs for webmakers Emma, Dee, Joe, Karen and Julia for sharing their great educational creations with a Maker Party flavor. We hope this issue has left you feeling inspired to remix, reflect and create your own! Have a great piece of content you want us to feature? Get in touch. And stay tuned for Part 2 of Community Literacies: Maker Party edition to learn about three more Maker Party teaching activities, this time from India. We already look forward to the making yet to come…

Get involved!

Check out these kindred online learning communities

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We started running online learning modules in response to the growing need for people to learn how both the technical and social structures of the web work. Open, online learning can activate and inspire people, and we’ve been trying to make Webmaker’s #TeachTheWeb program a sustainable engine of learning and support for our community. We’re pleased to partner with other open communities as we explore online learning and connectivism.

Meet Educator Innovator

Educator Innovator is an online meet up, blog and community centered on the principles of Connected Learning and run by a group of inspiring educators who are eager to help us understand how we can use re-imagine learning. Sponsored by the NWP and MacArthur Foundation, Educator Innovator recently ran the second annual #CLMOOC, a six week online learning experience designed to connect educators and encourage people to make and reflect. Learn more about Educator Innovator here.

Meet P2PU

Peer to Peer University is a collection of bright minds and inspiring open sourcers who are exploring open learning at every turn. They helped us build Webmaker Training and generally serve as inspiration by publishing research on open learning, organizing learning experiences and otherwise openly building an ecosystem of online learning communities. P2PU offers a variety of massive open online courses (MOOCs) as well as independent modules to help people level up in…well just about any skill you can think of! Head over to P2PU and explore their community!

Meet School of Open

Partnering with P2PU, Creative Commons offers online courses and in person workshops designed to help you learn about a variety of open practices. The School of Open spans the globe with innovative courses around open licensing, copyright, collaboration and more. In September, this global community of volunteers will be launching School of Open Africa, a continental launch of open courses and workshops organized by the African community. Explore the School of Open and find an open course that interests you.

Meet ConnectedCourses

Starting September 15th, a group of inspired connected educators will be talking about openness and blended learning in a 12 week course that aims to help people run their own connected courses. The coursework will help you understand how we work in the digital space by demystifying the tools and trade of openness. Connected Courses is a way to explore why you might run a Connectivist learning experience, how to get started, how to connect online and offline participants, and how to MAKE things that support this kind of learning. You can join in the fun here.

Special Thanks

All of these initiatives have individuals who have actively encouraged and supported Mozilla Webmaker and our various programs. We’re so happy to be teaching and learning with you!

Berlin, Mexico, Mali: A Maker Party Roundup (Week 4)

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Maker Party By The Numbers:
Total events during Maker Party: 1,220+
Individuals attending Maker Party events:  63,000+
Number of cities hosting Maker Party events: 260+

It’s been almost four weeks since the start of Maker Party which means we are at the halfway point of our global party! Through the hard work and participation of thousand we are changing the world, empowering people and starting a movement. Learn more about the wonderful ways people have been contributing to the Maker Party campaign this past week:

Maker Party @ Gangadevipally in India

Here’s what happened last week:

Maker Party – August 8th, Berlin
This month-long Maker Party welcomed makers from around the world to participate in building a makers lab in a shipping container. The kick-off celebration on August 8th involved workshops on everything from soldering, live graffiti, machine knitting and more. Learn about the event here.

Webmaker training and Maker Party – August 5th, Mali
This event was an introduction to web education to equip individuals in the African education system with the tools they need to succeed. The program for the event included teaching the basics of the web including HTML5, JavaScript and CSS technologies using the Webmaker tools. Get more information here.

Maker Party @ Gangadevipally – August 7-9th, India
Being hosted in the village Gangadevipally, this events purpose was to bring the awareness of the open web to rural people while also teaching the web to hundreds of families living in the village. Read the blog post.

3D Factory

3D Factory

Maker Party at Coworking Monterrey – August 4th, Mexico
A 3D printing Maker Party where youth learned how to make their own Maker Party 3D logo’s!  Attendees even got to see how you could 3D print individuals, crowns and more. See pictures from the event here.

Makes

Resources

  • Watch this live tutorial on how to build an app without knowing any code on Appmaker.
  • Planning a Net Neutrality Maker Party? Find tips, tricks and support here.

In the News

Get Involved 

Introducing three new Webmaker contribution badges!

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Teaching Kit Remixer badge  Web Literacy Skill Sharer badge  Event Host badge

As Maker Party continues, we’re continuing to listen to feedback from the Webmaker community. Based on comments from people like you, we’ve launched three additional badges to join the existing 18 Webmaker badges:

These badges recognise a lower (but still significant) level of participation and contribution by community members.

The Teaching Kit Remixer badge is issued to those who have remixed a Teaching Kit or Activity, while the Web Literacy Skill Sharer badge is issued to those who have shared elements of web literacy. Organizing an event to teach the web earns you the Event Host badge – so, as you can see, hosting a Maker Party could earn you all three!

Community members have already started to earn these badges. As ever, we’re looking forward to your feedback.


We’re still tweaking our badge offerings, working on contribution pathways, and designing a user-facing landing page for all of these badges. While we do so, you can access the other 18 badges via the following links:


Are you an existing Webmaker Mentor or Super Mentor? You should be able to follow the existing guidance to issue these badges!

Net Neutrality Tweet Chat this Thursday from #TeamInternet

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Interested in Net Neutrality? So is Mozilla. We’re hosting a net neutrality tweet chat this Thursday, August, 14 from 7 PM EDT (4 PM PDT). Join us on the hashtag #TeamInternet for an hour-long discussion about net neutrality—what it is and how you can help your friends and family understand it.

Net neutrality is a pivotal issue because it is all about preserving the web as a resource for everyone, regardless of how rich or powerful they are. We believe understanding net neutrality is an essential part of web literacy and being web literate is the key to surviving and thriving in the digital age. That is why we are currently hosting a Net Neutrality training (running through this Friday). And if you want to host your own Net Neutrality Teach-In, here is everything you need to make it happen.

So join us for an in-depth discussion about net neutrality this Thursday. It will be hosted by @Mozilla and we will be using the #TeamInternet hashtag. We will have a few folks from Mozilla leading the discussion:

  • Chris Riley, Senior Policy Engineer at Mozilla, @MChrisRiley
  • David Steer, Director of Advocacy at Mozilla, @davesteer

And many more net neutrality experts are expected to join in, too.

You’ll definitely want to be there.

Share Your Maker Party Events with the Event Reporter

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We know a lot of time is put into organizing, planning and running a Maker Party event. Which is why we want to make sure that once your event is completed it is documented and sharable so we can celebrate your success with you!

There are many different ways to give the community a deeper look at your event, and one of the best ways to share with the world what you did is the recently launched Event Reporter template. MakerPartyEventReportThanks to super-maker Kat Braybrooke you can now share videos, summaries, pictures, slides and your agenda all in one place with one link! Simply open the Event Reporter, hit the “remix” button at the top right-hand corner and fill in your  event information. We’ve also included a helpful tutorial that is accessible within the report so you can have a bit of help getting started. Customize it however you want and then use the link to share it with the world!

Get inspired with these completed Event Reports from recent Maker Party events:

The Event Report is now also available in Spanish:  Informe Del Evento Maker Party .

In addition to the Event Reporter you can also share what happened at your event on the events platform within your event page! You can now add links to your pictures and makes after your event.

Screen Shot 2014-07-29 at 10.43.55 AM However you choose to share your story with the community we want to hear about it! So don’t forget to use the hashtag #MakerParty and to share your creations with us on Facebook and Twitter.  For even more ways to share after your event check-out the post-event resources on the Maker Party resource page. We can’t wait to hear (and see) what you do at your events!

Q&A with Pursuitery

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One of the best things about the Maker Party partners program is the opportunity to connect with people and organizations that are as passionate about making and teaching the web as we are. One of our partners that we’ve been geeking out with on the web is Pursuitery. Pursuitery is a place where individuals from all over the world come together online to explore their interests, build their skills, and share their experiences about the things they are most interested in. It’s an awesome place to explore and make on the web. I had the chance to sit down with Community Manager, Evan Jones, to learn more about Pursuitery and what they’re doing for the Maker Party campaign this year:

Evan Jones at Coding With Scratch program at the Echo Park library in LA.

Evan Jones at Coding With Scratch program at the Echo Park library in LA

What is Pursuitery and what do you do?

Pursuitery is an online community. We provide a friendly and supportive space where people can connect with and learn from one another. I function as the community manager (I call myself a “web wrangler” because, really, who would NOT want that title?) and work to address the needs of our members. I listen to our users, talk with them, and keep them up to date on the site and what we’re doing with it. Intriguing stuff!

What is the event you will be hosting or running during Maker Party?

We’ll be hosting three challenges through Pursuitery – Make A Meme & Hack The Web W/ X-Ray Goggles, Turn Gifs Into A Music Video (yes, we are still figuring out how to pronounce “GIF.” Please feel free to tweet us @Pursuitery with your take on the argument!),  and Build An App With AppMaker. The last challenge, Build An App with Appmaker, just ran on Pursuitery.   I should note that we hold Geekouts – interactive video chats – on Pursuitery.com as well. We’re doing one for each challenge, so there’s been one every Monday for the last couple of weeks. You should definitely check them out if you’re into Maker Party goodness and fun banter!

Pursuitery Appmaker Geekout.

Pursuitery Appmaker Geekout

Why did you choose to get involved with Maker Party?

We were informed that there was no party like a Maker Party due to the fact that a Maker Party apparently does not stop. I am happy to say that we were informed correctly. But seriously: We love the web. We love learning about the web, and we love helping others learn about the web. It’s an exciting place and sharing that excitement is a big part of what we do. Maker Party is therefore a natural fit for us.

Tell us what you’re most excited for at the event/events?

Well I had a blast making memes and remixing websites, but I am also 100 percent sure that I will have the time of my life making my own App. I used to perform absurdist pranks when I was a student; goofy things like running a fundraiser to buy our class an island and whatnot. Now I can finally take my love of situationist humor and make an app with it!

Why do you think is it important for youth and adults to make things with technology?

The creative rush is like nothing else. When you build something, you feel a sense of achievement, a sense of completion, that no person or force can take away from you. It’s fun. It’s exciting. Who didn’t make a box fort or something like that when they were a kid? Who didn’t like making up their own characters and stories, or even just playing with the characters that others came up with for hours on end? I view making things with technology as an extension of that. Yes it can be serious, but the play element is important as well.   It’s ultimately a chance to translate your ideas into a new form and find a new way to express yourself. Technology and the Internet occupy a vast space in our lives, and so putting your stamp on them is a good way to not just feel like you’re sitting there lost in this torrent of data and images. So learning how to make things with technology is just another way to interact with the world at large; it’s a chance to not only learn a skill but also a chance to learn about yourself. And that’s pretty important.

What is the feedback you usually get from people who attend or teach at your events?

We get the best compliments. To have somebody offer up time to talk with us and then be told “Hey, I had a lot of fun doing this!” is very gratifying. It’s even more gratifying to know that people are having that kind of fun all over the world when they visit Pursuitery and join our Challenges and Geekouts.

Why is it important for people and organizations to get involved in Maker Party?

It’s cool to connect. Technology lets us connect on a variety of different levels, even if we’re not in the same place, but there’s nothing quite like walking up to some people you’re friendly with and saying “Hey, check THIS out!” and then showing off your new favorite comic, record, app, or whatever. It’s even more exciting when it’s something YOU made. Maker Party amplifies that feeling by letting large amounts of people enjoy that kind of creative spark together. It’s a lot of fun, and it’s exciting to be a part of that surge.   Actually let me put it this way: It’s far better than just taking another coffee break. And I say that as a coffee lover!

How can people get in touch with your organization?

You can find us online at Pursuitery.com and Tweet at us @Pursuitery. We do a lot of cool stuff and we’d love to see you all on the site sometime. Let’s keep the Maker Party going!

Budapest, Glasgow, Chattanooga: A Maker Party Roundup (Week 3)

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Maker Party By The Numbers:
Total events during Maker Party: 1,100+
Individuals attending Maker Party events:  55,000+
Number of cities hosting Maker Party events: 240+

We are now almost one month into Maker Party and thousands of people have been contributing to build a global web literacy movement that is changing the world. If you haven’t joined the party yet, it’s not too late to get involved.  Throw your own event, or find a Maker Party to attend. We have no shortage of inspiration! Check out this round-up of awesome events that happened last week:

Hive Chicago at the  Chicago Maker Faire working to connect organizations in Chicago.

Hive Chicago at the Maker Faire, working to connect organizations in Chicago.

Here’s what happened last week:

Skool Summer Tech Camp – July 21-August 1st, Budapest 
This two week long summer tech camp for girls 11-13 was aimed at increasing the level of awareness and understanding of the field of computer science by letting participants explore their creativity. Get more information here.

Maker Party – Newspaper Remix – July 28th, Glasgow
Attendees of this party investigated what happened on July 28th in history around the Commonwealth, then made their own digital newspaper to share current and past events by playing with code on Mozilla Thimble. Get more information here.

Check out this Vine from the event:

Hive Chattanooga Maker Party – August 2nd, Chattanooga
Educators from across the region were on hand to help youth and their parents build, explore, and create on the web in the local Chattanooga Public Libary. See the fantastic coverage in the local news here.

Chicago Southside Mini Maker Faire – August 2nd, Chicago
Hundreds of youth gathered at a local mall in Chicago to experience both physical and digital making. NASA facilitated workshops exploring engineering design by making rockets and gliders; and CodeCreate helped youth connect cardboard structures via arduinos and Scratch  brought them to live with sounds. See pictures here.

Kids Maker Party – August 3rd, India
For the first Maker Party in Itarsi, individuals celebrated international friendship day by learning how to create for the web and creating makes to celebrate the day with high school students in the local community. Read more about the event here.

Makes

  •     Check out the Blindstore created at CERN Webfest.
  •     See all the makes from the Tech-Girls Maker Party here.
  •     A Maker Party report out from Womoz Warangal in India.

Resources

In The News

Get Involved