Empowering youth with skills to design solutions for the betterment of their school, community, and the future.
see our Web (re)Design Projects
DesignedByYouth.org was founded so students could have access to technology education in their schools. The idea came after noticing many schools had computers in the schools, but no dedicated computer instructor to facilitate regular classes. So, we gathered a group of volunteers, some with technology know how and others just interested in getting students excited about learning to make technology and learning come alive. DesignedByYouth.org started at Pollicita Middle School in August of 2013 and has plans to expand.
The concept is to create a supportive, relaxed environment where students can come play and learn about technology with the support and guidance of volunteers. The environment fosters creativity and exploration, students teach one another, and together we explore and problem solve how to use technology to communicate ideas and find solutions.
A framework for teaching our students has been created and instructional modules expose students to the possibilities of what technology can do. Volunteers help write the instructional modules and in the future we hope to create an on-line hub for these modules so other educators can utilize the modules and contribute modules of their own for others.
To appease students with varying interests, modules are project based and require students to be separated into teams each with a very specific and different set of goals and focus.
Typically, teams would be:
Graphic Design Team
Project Management Team
PR and Blogging Team
Web Design Team
DesignedByYouth.org looks to spark fires in students and
continually fuel the fire with knowledge.
Our founder, Jason Dare, has been teaching technology to students of all ages for over 15 years. His diversity of students ranging from ages 6 to 100 has taught him how to mold excitement and interest in learning to any student. Jason's experience owning a computer training center for professionals, teaching teachers how integrate technology in the classroom, and helping found the Intel Computer Clubhouse in San Francisco has taught him what does and doesn't work in education, business and a youth program.
Disappointed by short lived programs, Jason used his entrepreneurial experience to create a long-term solution to teaching students technology. DesignedByYouth.org is designed to be financially self-sustaining, an integral part of a school's culture, and student run.
Based on a student survey in 2013.
Of our 40 students, we learned:
97% have a computer at home
94% have Internet access
Email is used only to confirm accounts
4% - Blog
16% - Tweet
45% - Facebook
94% - YouTube
Computers are primarily used as a on-demand TV.
How much did Facebook buy Instagram for?
Is one of the questions we ask students as part of the Internet Treasure Hunt we facilitate at the beginning of the program to assess the student's ability to use the Internet to problem solve and their computer competency level.
Other questions include:
Create a folder on the desktop with your First Name and initial of your Last Name.
Save a photo of the Simpsons Toad to the folder with your name.
Save a mp3 sound clip of a croaking toad to your folder.
We were suprised to see how few of the students knew how to effectively search for information. The students knew to go to Google, but most could not formulate their own search and typed verbatim the questions we had listed in the Hunt.
15% knew how to create a folder on the desktop
10% knew how to save a photo from the web
5% found and saved the sound clip to the folder
(we were on Macs which could have slightly skewed the results)
From this Internet Treasure Hunt, we realized how little formal training these students have had and despite 97% of them having a computer at home, they were unaware of the power computers held. Students seemed to mainly be involved with YouTube.
At the end of the semester, we gave our students a similar Internet Treasure Hunt. Most of the students found the Hunt was easy for them and the majority of students were able to complete the entire Hunt accurately.
Our program so far has developed students who still continue to blog, some that program for fun, and many creating graphics on their computers. Most importantly, all of the students now know how to use the Internet to problem solve.
1 Billion $ was how much Facebook paid for Instagram
DesignedByYouth.org is fun, nurturing and effective.
Thank you Partners & Sponsors
501(c)(3) organization #45-5629426 | 415-735-0960 | firstname.lastname@example.org