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Gathering my tweets, photos, and notes from #Picademy in Jersey City. Thank you, @Raspberry_Pi for two days of inspiring, exciting, fun, and thought-provoking professional development! #STEMed #STEAM #MakerEd

I felt incredibly fortunate to be in a room of educators on June 21-22 for two days of Picademy hosted at the Liberty Science Center in Jersey City, New Jersey! The workshops were led by Andrew Collins (Educator Training Manager at ) and Raspberry Certified Teachers from previous co-horts (Amanda HaughsChantell Mason, and ). There was a separate Picademy June 18-19 and other networking opportunities throughout the week facilitated by Dana Augustin (Educator Program Coordinator at ). Per Picademy’s website:

Picademy is the Raspberry Pi Foundation’s free face-to-face professional development programme that supports educators throughout their digital making and computing journey. This two-day training event is held at venues around the UK and North America. After completing the programme, educators join a community of passionate digital making practitioners.Interested in attending? Visit our event calendar to find a Picademy near you.

Day 1 consisted of a crash course in setting up the Raspberry Pi (HDMI to a screen, USB to keyboard and mouse, power cord, SD card) and gaining insights into a variety of attachments and HATs (GPIO boards, Sense Hat, Explorer Hat Pro, Piano Hat, Mini Black Hat Hack3r, Camera Module V2, Traffic Light add on).

Day 2 was an opportunity to break into groups and have extended time to develop a project prototype. I partnered with Cathy Knives Chau and Lauren Berrios, and we created PiPix, a portable RaspberryPi powered Polaroid-inspired camera that can be picked up by students at any time to take pictures of class projects or on class trips. Different filters can be applied, and photos would be uploaded to a class Twitter stream. We successfully designed a countdown timer to display on the SenseHat, enabled the SenseHat’s joystick to take the picture, and had a random filter applied to the captured image. We needed more time to have the joystick be used to choose a filter and/or allow the user to choose to capture an image or an animated GIF. We were on the verge of integrating our program with Twitter’s API (Thanks to Cathy!), but didn’t manage this in time. Cathy, Lauren, and I are hoping to gather later in the summer to complete a successful PiPix prototype!

Here’s our code so far…

# PiPix
# Using SenseHat for Geo location, four buttons for filters, countdown
# Use imestamp and direc tion from joystick on SenseHat
from picamera import PiCamera
from gpiozero import Button
from sense_hat import SenseHat, ACTION_PRESSED, ACTION_HELD, ACTION_RELEASED
from time import sleep
from signal import pause
import random
import datetime
import time
#import tweepy
#import json
camera = PiCamera()
sense = SenseHat()
#with open(‘twitterauth.json’) as file:
#    secrets=json.load(file)
#auth = tweepy.OAuthHandler(secrets[‘consumer_key’], secrets[‘consumer_secret’])
#auth.set_access_token(secrets[‘access_token’], secrets[‘access_token_secret’])
#twitter = tweepy.API(auth)
randeffect = [‘colorswap’,’watercolor’,’cartoon’,’sketch’]
t = (7, 219, 252)
a = (252, 113, 7)
countdown1 = [
    t, t, t, t, a, t, t, t,
    t, t, t, a, a, t, t, t,
    t, t, t, t, a, t, t, t,
    t, t, t, t, a, t, t, t,
    t, t, t, t, a, t, t, t,
    t, t, t, t, a, t, t, t,
    t, t, t, t, a, t, t, t,
    t, t, t, a, a, a, t, t]
countdown2 = [
   t, t, t, a, a, a, t, t,
   t, t, a, t, t, t, a, t,
   t, t, t, t, t, t, a, t,
   t, t, t, t, t, a, t, t,
   t, t, t, t, a, t, t, t,
   t, t, t, a, t, t, t, t,
   t, t, a, t, t, t, t, t,
   t, t, a, a, a, a, a, t]
countdown3 = [
    t, t, a, a, a, a, t, t,
    t, t, t, t, t, t, a, t,
    t, t, t, t, t, t, a, t,
    t, t, t, a, a, a, t, t,
    t, t, t, t, t, t, a, t,
    t, t, t, t, t, t, a, t,
    t, t, t, t, t, t, a, t,
    t, t, a, a, a, a, t, t]
# Joystick
def capture(event):
    if event.action !=ACTION_RELEASED:
        camera.start_preview(alpha=192)
        sense.set_pixels(countdown3)
        sleep(.5)
        sense.set_pixels(countdown2)
        sleep(.5)
        sense.set_pixels(countdown1)
        sleep(.5)
        date = datetime.datetime.now().strftime(“%m_%d_%Y_%H_%M_%S”)
        camera.image_effect = random.choice (randeffect)
        camera.capture(“/home/pi/joy_image{0}.jpg”.format(date))
        camera.stop_preview()
sense.stick.direction_any = capture
#for i in range(4):
#        camera.image_effect = random.choice(randeffect)
#        camera.capture(“/home/pi/PiPix{0}.jpg”.format(i))

Chantell captured some video of our presentation and shared it via Twitter. Her tweet is pasted below:

Below, I’ve gathered my tweets from the two-day workshop:

And here are two tweets which include info about stuff I need to explore further…

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Thanks to @___pi for sharing a link to #Paperbits with @microbit_edu! Currently prototyping with @kstark013 and two #MakerCamp girls. #scichat #STEAM #STEMed #MakerEd #elemaker @BrearleyNYC

On Monday, I saw that Sylvia Martinez retweeted something from Per-Ivar Kloen about Paperbits:

Per-Ivar is a Fab Learn Fellow, and he graciously also shared with me a direct link to the the paper which describes his Paperbits (Paper Circuits with Microbits) project inspiration and process: http://fellows.fablearn.org/circuit-stickers-electronic-circuits-made-of-copper-tape/

I shared this link with Kasie Stark, one of the fabulous Science teachers at The Brearley School. Kasie is leading a MakerLab session during Brearley’s Summer Start program, and she suggested trying out Paperbits with her campers this week. On Monday, Kasie and I met to chat about micro:bits  and MakeCode (micro:bit’s JavaScript Blocks editor). We gathered copper tape, LED lights, alligator clips, and Piezo buzzers, and a few copies of Per-Ivar’s Paperbits lessons.

Today, I met Kasie and her campers and we explored together. The girls are both going into 4th grader and have had experiences with littleBits, LEGO WeDo, Scratch, JavaScript, and more. I love working with smart, fearless girls! We treated  Per-Ivar’s Paperbits PDF’s as a fun starting point, and then the girls further prototyped with different sequences of blinking lights and different tunes from the buzzers.  See images and videos below.

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Check out @Tinkercad’s toolbar addition of #Scribble!

Check out Tinkercad‘s toolbar addition of Scribble! Here’s a link to their blog post with more information about Scribble:
https://blog.tinkercad.com/2018/04/26/introducing-scribble-the-ultimate-tinkercad-personalization-tool/

I love the freedom of hand-drawing! If there were a Tinkercad iPad app, I could see using this for next year’s Class II Lenape buzzer toy project. On the iPad, Morphi or Doodle3D are options for finger-sketching designs.

I imagine Scribble may include more features eventually, like maybe a “fill” option? Without a quick way to fill an outline of a shape, I manually used the Brush Tool (as if I were drawing with crayons on paper), and then use the Eraser Tool to make the holes in my first design below. For my second attempt, I used the Shape Tool and Shape Eraser Tool. It was a little weird at first, but then I started to get the hang of it. I’d really like the option of sketching an outline and filling it in. Yes, I’m repeating myself.Screen Shot 2018-04-27 at 9.38.06 AM.pngscreen-shot-2018-04-27-at-10-13-46-am.png

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