Grade 3 students are in the process of building their own ukuleles with maker teacher Mr. Louie, but in the meantime they are practicing on our school instruments. As part of this music making experience, students learn how to tune their ukuleles using iPads. There are 4 strings on a ukulele, G, C, E, and A. The Tunefor Ukulele app tells students if the string is too high, too low, or just right. It’s a complex skill, so they work together to figure it out. Part of the process is also training their ears so they can eventually learn to listen for what the instrument is supposed to sound like.
This August our technology program at Hamlin has expanded. In previous years girls in grades 7 and 8 could only take technology classes as electives. In 2019-2020 students in both grades 7 and 8 will partake in a required yearlong tech exploration. This recommendation for a change emerged from the diligent work of Hamlin’s Technology Advisory Committee. Middle school girls will now have the opportunity to continue their studies in areas like coding, robotics, and the engineering design process.
Jim Lengel (Director of Technology) states:
“Our comprehensive tech program now spans from grades 2 through 8. Girls will walk out of Hamlin knowing how to make a website from scratch.”
Each year, we host a Making/Tinkering event for all Grade 5 students and their families. Last night, students completed Catalyst challenges, built circuits using littleBits, showcased their Scratch games with Makey Makeys, and programmed Sphero robots! The Grade 5 teachers and the tech team worked together to create a wonderful learning experience and an engaging community event for our Grade 5 families.
Grade 1 students have spent much of their school year exploring San Francisco and the people who live in our city. Students began by asking, how can we demonstrate good citizenship in our local community? Girls took walks around the Hamlin neighborhood in order to: make observations, think about the needs of a community, and speak with people who live and work nearby. 1st graders looked at different kinds of maps, made their own maps, and followed maps on the neighborhood walks. The girls also had an opportunity to explore their own home neighborhoods and teach their peers about what they discovered through creating poster boards with photos.
On April 9, the project culminated with girls showing their 3 dimensional map of the local neighborhood, complete with QR codes, which allowed visitors to learn more via their mobile phones.
The beginning of December brings a weeklong celebration of coding and STEM. Students in all grades Kindergarten through Grade 8 are participating in various activities centered on a dynamic exploration of technology and related fields. Our students join kids from around the globe in this engaging endeavor.
Throughout the week students are practicing their coding skills using the following:
Lightbot, Cargo-bot, Playgrounds, Code.org, Human Resource Machine, Kodable, App Lab, Dance Party, Blockly, Classic Maze, Compute it, and Conditionals with Cards.
On Wednesday morning we will welcome guest speaker, Jenny Wang. Ms. Wang is a computer science student at Harvard University, intern at POPSUGAR, director of Startup Girl, and board member for Shiffon Co. Jewelry.
For the 4th year running, The Hamlin School will celebrate STEMming the Gender Gap Day on Friday, December 7. The day is an opportunity to promote science, technology, engineering, and mathematics education/careers for our students, while connecting with female tech leaders in the Bay Area. Hamlin girls will be able to observe, interact, and learn, as they prepare to be tomorrow’s tech innovators and help #StemGenderGap!
This year Hamlin is visiting a variety of fantastic Bay Area organizations; we are incredibly thankful for these partnerships.
Students in grades K-7 will have experiences at:
The Lawrence Hall of Science, The Bay Area Discovery Museum, The Exploratorium, Salesforce, POPSUGAR, Eventbrite, HoneyBook, UCSF, USS Hornet, Tesla, Apple, Brightwheel, California Academy of Sciences and Sentry
Students in Grade 8 will have the opportunity to learn from the following speakers on campus:
Sali Christenson, Founder of Argent
Patricia Santos, CEO and Co-Founder of Volition Beauty
Heidi Zak, Co-Founder and Co-CEO of Thirdlove
Eurie Kim, Investor at Forerunner Ventures
Kathryn Duryea, Founder and CEO of Year & Day
Steph Palmeri, Partner at Uncork Capital
Lauren Loktev, Partner at Collaborative Fund
Sara Adler, Partner at Wave Capital
On Wednesday, Dutta Satadip spoke with Grade 7 students about his personal and professional journey, sharing wisdom from his life.
Dutta Satadip is the Global Head of Customer Operations at Pinterest. Prior to Pinterest, he was the Director of Customer Success at Google. He was responsible for a multi-billion dollar portfolio of over 150 products with teams in 15 different offices. Mr. Satadip has worked extensively in both developed and emerging countries. Mr. Satadip frequently speaks at major conferences (including TEDx) on topics such as: Customer Experience, Operations, Change Management and Leadership. He also shares his experiences via articles in publications like Harvard Business Review, and Strategy and Business. He has served on the board of the National Hemophilia Foundation and Save One Life.
Below are a few highlights from what Mr. Satadip shared:
-(In a corporate setting) “Don’t wait to be included, make your voice heard. It is one thing to have good ideas, but you have to be able to share them.”
-“My grandfather was a huge influence on me, he broadened my view of the world and made me curious.”
-“After graduating from college it is very important to set personal learning goals so you can continue to grow.”
-“When you ask for help, there are lots of people who will step forward to help you, but you have to ask.”
-“Find your supporters, the people who believe in you.”
-“Two crucial skills for the future are: understanding and processing numbers, and building relationships with people.”
Rise To the Challenge is the intensive for our Grade 7 students. Intensives are a concentrated period of study where an entire grade is working on a project or projects, with profound research and preparation, followed by a public event. These intensives are designed with Hamlin’s mission in mind, as our students meet the challenges of their time.
Grade 7 students have the opportunity to choose their own topics, do in-depth research, then share their findings, providing short and long-term solutions to various problems.
This year’s topics were: Technology and Well-being, LBGTQ+ Rights, Oceans and Plastics, Oceans and Overfishing, Cancer Prevention, Digital Privacy and Cybersecurity, Gun Violence and School Shootings, Stress Prevention, Post-Antibiotic Era, Mass Incarceration of People of Color, Access to Education for Rohingya Girls in Bangladesh.
Many teams used technology to generate awareness, including: videos, websites, blogs, Twitter, Change.org, and Instagram. One group made their own “zero waste” whipped lotion, mascara, toothpaste, and deodorant. Another group made wooden shark earrings to raise awareness about the unethical fishing for shark fins.
The Stress Prevention group explored meditation as a way to help solve their problem. In the video below students speak firsthand about stress and how meditation helps them.
The following apps were shared and demonstrated:
Mayn Task: Allows users to pair timed tasks with music from a playlist.
Seen: Allows users to set up reminders for when to change their contact lenses.
Movie Meter: Allows users to select movies tailored to fit their mood.
Anchor: Allows users to de-stress by selecting from a menu of healthy options.
Lemon: Allows users to hire chefs to prepare meals for them.
Below is a video clip of Mayn Task showing their demo:
1. What is your role at The Hamlin School?
I’m the IT manager, I handle anything tech-related, computers, network, systems, hardware, trouble-shooting, the website and phone system. I help maintain the whole operation. I have a Master’s degree from USC in electrical engineering with a focus on computer networking, but I like the hands on stuff more than coding. With coding you have to sit in the same place for long periods of time. With my work now, I have more opportunities to run around, talk with different people and develop social skills.
2. Tell us about your connection to China?
I’m the only one in my family who came to the United States. I came to California in 1998, my parents and older sister still live in China. I’m from Heshan, Guangdong (near the southern coast, a few hours from Hong Kong). My father was a principal of a school. I try to get back to visit my family in China every year.
3. What is most similar/different about China/United States?
There are very few similarities, they both have McDonald’s, but that is about it. The biggest difference is air quality. The air here in San Francisco is pure, in China the air is very polluted because of all of the industry. There is also water pollution because of chemicals being dumped in rivers. My parents often go into the mountains to get spring water that isn’t contaminated. Culturally, Americans are more expressive than most Chinese people. I’ve slowly become more inclined to speak freely. The Chinese education system is focused entirely on academics, not on developing skills related to free speech and expression.
The ‘Hour of Code‘ is a nationwide initiative, introducing computer programming to 10 million students and encouraging them to learn how to code. Hamlin is both proud and excited to use this week, once again, to highlight the incredible coding that is already happening on our campus. We believe that coding continues to be essential for our girls to meet the challenges of their times.
Hour of Code Events: Monday, December 8 – Friday, December 12, 2014
In the Lower School, every class has been scheduled for at least an hour worth of coding instruction with Ms. Windell. Girls will use a variety of coding apps that have been selected to be developmentally appropriate for their age/skill level. These apps include Kodable, Scratch Jr., LightBot, HopScotch, Blockly Maze, as well as resources from the Code.org website.
In the Middle School, we are excited to offer the girls the opportunity to come in before school and code together. It is our goal that the girls’ interest in coding will be sparked and they will complete at least an hour of code between home and school during the week. From 7:50-8:25 am, Grades 5 and 6 will code under the guidance of Mr. Lengel on the first floor of Stanwood, while Grades 7 and 8 will code with Ms. Davis in the Great Hall. Special alumni guests will be popping by during these morning coding sessions and on Thursday, December 11, Middle School parents are encouraged to join the girls to see what they have learned and how exciting coding can be. The girls will explore a combination of Scratch, Lightbot, RoboLogic, CargoBot, CodeAcademy, and Code.org.
Girls in Grades 4 through 8 are encouraged to join us in the East Dining Room on Tuesday, December 9 at 7:50 am to hear from the founder of Task Rabbit, Leah Busque, an entrepreneur, innovator, and coder. Leah will talk about coding and its effect on her learning, as well as how coding has shaped her career.
Administrators and all staff members are being encouraged to join in the fun! Join us and make the commitment to try something new – and to learn to code throughout the week!