Decode Me Space Launch September 16, 2017 @ Open Works
Session 1: Unpacking Emoji
Mentors: Marilyn J. Mosby Esq. (Baltimore State's Attorney), Shervonne Cherry (Community Direct of Spark Baltimore), Crystal Coache (Director of Talent at Allovue) and Charlotte James (Communications Director of Code In the Schools)
For our launch session, we reflected on the range of emotions carried by both parties who enter a bullying situation. Each emotion was assigned an emoji, to broaden our lexicon, beyond "bully" and "victim."
How my bully felt:
I was bossy.
I can get quickly impassioned and bossy but this has cost me friendships. One of my earliest memories was losing my first best friend who lived next door. Another girl moved next to me and started hanging out with us. We immediately did not get along and she started harassing me daily from her porch. Eventually, my other friend joined in and this lasted 8 years. High school was different and I met a lot of people who went to school with this girl. Apparently, she had no friends, so she took her anger out on me. The experience has shaped how I interpret bullying situations--hurt people hurt people.
How I felt:
I felt lonely.
I didn't feel safe on either side of my home, so I took many walks by myself to clear my head. In the long term, this proved to be a good strategy if I felt ever in conflict. Taking time to think about it puts everything in perspective and kept my thoughts clear.
Our Decode Me Space reflection for session 2 centered on superpowers and how superheroes had the choice to use their gifts to elevate, collaborate or oppress.
Students highlighted their strengths and chose to learn about lyricism or music production. MCs Unique Robinson of Dew More and B!Fly helped students zero in on their best qualities and dream superpowers to develop lyrics. Kariz Marcel leant his expertise with the pen and the production studio with stations on beat production and audio recording. The workshop ended with a block party concert with Eze Jackson and Unique Robinson.
Session 2: Back to School Songwriting Workshop at the Motor House Baltimore
Mentors: Unique Robinson of DewMore, Kariz Marcel of Kariz' Kids, and Eze Jackson
September 23, 2017
We dipped our toes gently into action research for an exhibition table at Code In the School's Girls In Computer Science Summit. Before hanging out at the Motor House, a table was set up with prompts and info for two types of research questions.
A. Data Visualization Wall: What interventions do you feel will help meaningfully engage girls in STEAM careers?
pink-mentors, green-clubs, blue-workshops, turquoise-other
B. How did you feel when you came and how did you feel after the sessions?
This data was collected privately, stored in a pink lock box.
It was rewarding to return at the end of the day to see a full data wall and lockbox.
A common response was "sleepy at first, but excited by the end of the day!"
Girls are so often called to solve problems and shoulder emotional weight as a given. We should rightly identify them as researchers.