Diversifying the technology field

Coding is a hot topic on Twitter, LinkedIn, and just about everywhere in the media. But the tech industry currently is not well known for being a center of diversity in race or gender. Article after article, interviews, and blog posts are all discussing this issue: how do we change the current corporate culture in technology to more accurately represent our diverse nation? And especially, how do we empower our girls to help them onto a pathway to tech careers?

As a female who has been in the technology industry for approximately 17 years, I don’t have any answers. I do have all of the same questions as everybody else. How do we get girls involved in any industry that has been dominated by men? How do we reach girls in low-income neighborhoods and kids of color to even consider technology as a course?

So, rather offer my thoughts as to how we can do it, I want to pose a question. What do you think is a way to reach at-risk, low-income students of color, especially girls, to consider careers in technology?

Access your Minecraft server from another lab or class

If you want to access your Minecraft server from another class or lab, all you need to remember is the server IP. Check out this post: Minecraft teachers: server ?
To access IP, go to multiplayer, create “new”, add your server IP. If you don’t know how to find the server IP, it is in the server permissions file in your server folder.

My love for Minecraft

MinecraftEDU is a fairly new platform that is the brainchild of a teacher who began using Minecraft and found it’s value in the classroom. Upon initial review of Minecraft, if you were to just watch a video or observe the student using this JAVA platform game, you may wonder what the real value is and what’s the point? In interviewing a student on the value of Minecraft, if they are dedicated player, they can wax poetic for a very long period of time about the value that it can bring to the classroom. In Northern California, I’ve been following a movement around the use of Minecraft EDU in both classroom environments and afterschool programs.
Why do I love Minecraft? I love Minecraft because my eight-year-old loves Minecraft. He has catalogued 80+ hours of video watching various Minecraft GURU’s talk about their builds, their worlds, and their edits to mods. He can also add/modify code via command line which he began doing when he was seven.
As an introduction to the world of coding programs, Minecraft is a Java-based open platform (means it can me modified–think MODS). There is nothing in comparison with the exception of MIT Scratch for students in the K-12 setting.
Here are a few MinecraftEDU resources for anyone interested in evaluating this tool and integrating it into their curriculum. You can outfit a lab for a very low price and servers can be set up on another computer: It does not impact the infrastructure with TCO in an unreasonable way. Its very appealing in communities that may not have the money to buy a solution that can impact students in such a meaningful way. More on this topic to come…

Best of luck and play:

MinecraftEDU Resources: