Not only a TechGirl, a TechTeacher too! by Assia Zemir (Algeria)
After returning to our home countries from the United States, we TechGirls were asked to implement the community projects we designed during the program. The project I planned and initiated was teaching computer science classes (HTML and CSS) to a group of young people.
My project was designed for people between the age of 15 and 17 years old. The reason why I chose this age group is because they have a big interest in computer science, though their interest is rarely directed toward useful things such as coding. This is why I wanted to introduce this field to these teens and to let them know that a computer can be used for things than just Facebook or Twitter. As I started to advertise my project, I was surprised to hear that many older people were interested in it and much younger ones as well. Because of the lack of time, however, I only was able to teach a group of seven teens aged between 15 and 18 years old. The classes took place in one of the Youth Houses in my city: “El Hadj Mahfoud.” I really appreciate the support I got from the director of the Youth House for this initiative.
The classes lasted from September 13th to September 21st, 2013. During this period we had 5 sessions, each lasting for 2 hours. The first 4 lessons were devoted to teaching my students HTML and CSS and helping them implement it in their projects. I dedicated the last session to talking about the importance of technology and web design in our lives and also to congratulating my students for successfully finishing their HTML course.
When I was teaching, I really liked how the students showed a lot of interest. I was pleased to learn that they were already sharing what I was teaching them with other people. The students picked things up very quickly and they really seemed to enjoy it and have fun.
One of my students told me, “I really like HTML, it’s awesome!” Another one said, “I’m really thankful for this because it is something I’ve never known even if it is so important and interesting!”
Their words made feel really happy. Through teaching these courses, I reached my goals and taught these students not only HTML but also awareness of the importance of computer science and technology in today’s world.
Finally, I would like to say that I haven’t just taught people during this project but I have learnt from them as well. I’ve learned that giving someone knowledge is different from receiving it. Teaching can make you feel like you’re making a change, a change that contributes to a better world…no matter how small that change may be!