We are building an online library of curricula to enrich middle school computer science classes.
FirstByte strives to equip educators with the resources to teach students engineering and computer science. By building a database of unique curricula and strong resources, teachers will find it easier to teach new lessons that work for their classrooms.
Meet the Founders:
We’re three friends from high school who had some amazing computer science teachers. Now, it’s our turn to give back to the community of teachers building up our generation.
We began teaching computer science together in an after-school ArtBotics club, where 6th-8th graders programmed Cricket robots to animate their art projects and presented them at UMass Lowell’s BotFest. As the students’ excitement grew each week, so did ours. We wanted to encourage more students to pursue computer science— particularly girls.
The following summer, we developed and instructed a girls-only coding class funded by an NCWIT AspireIT grant. This camp introduced coding concepts with Google’s CS First curriculum and expanded on them by teaching students how to program LilyPad Arduinos to create wearable technology. With funds from a HERlead grant, we were fortunate enough to run the same curriculum again, a few months later. Each was a mutually rewarding experience— the girls were excited to learn and work on their projects and completed the courses with confidence in their abilities, and we were able to use our knowledge to shape the future of girls in STEM.
This year, we attended the Clinton Global Initiative University with our commitment to education.
We want to help create new opportunities for women in technology. Leading by example and enabling young women to succeed will make a positive impact in the world. As female computer scientists and problem-solvers, the issue of gender gap in STEM fields is one bug we’re passionate about fixing!
Kasandra is studying electrical engineering at Northeastern University. She first became involved in computer science and engineering with an Artbotics project. She’s continued her interest in technology by competing in the Botball Robotics competition, co-founding the outreach group CS Sparks, and creating Fashion SENCE.
Natalie is studying computer science at Brown University. She has had over 4 years of outreach experience, through Fashion SENCE, Google IgniteCS, CS Sparks, Technovation, Artbotics and more. Natalie wishes to spread her own passion for computer science to those who have yet to experience it and hopes to one day see computer science become an integral part of every child’s education.
Jaedyn is studying computer science at Northeastern University. Previous outreach involvement includes ArtBotics, CS: Sparks, FashionSENCE, and STEMout at Northeastern. Through these projects, Jaedyn hopes to inspire others, especially girls, to test their problem-solving skills and pursue computer science.
Toyin is studying BS/MS computer engineering at Northeastern University. She is involved with Northeastern’s Black Engineering Student Society and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. Toyin wants children of all backgrounds to be exposed to STEM and further diversify its workforce.
Luke is studying computer science at Northeastern University. He found his passion for computer programming at a young age and has since been spreading his love for STEM. He’s tutored students 1-on-1, planned classes and ran summer workshops on HTML. Luke is working on the FirstByte website to promote collaboration among teachers. In his free time, he enjoys geeking out over maps and poetry (though not necessarily at the same time)!
Brenna is studying bioengineering at Northeastern University. She has four years of experience working as a counselor at a summer day camp, and is excited about the opportunity to bring STEM education to students in the Boston area and beyond.