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Google is helping Seattle Public Libraries bridge the digital divide



Photo: Finch Robots

 

Thanks to two newly-announced grants from Google, select branches of the Seattle Public Library will now provide access to both laptops and a finch robot educational program for students in areas that generally have limited access to technology programs of this caliber.

What is the finch robot program you ask? Good question. The finch robot program offers equipment and a curriculum to help kids develop basic computational thinking skills and give them an avenue to explore the world of computer programming. The finch robot uses the programming language Scratch to present users with challenges that introduce them to the basic concepts of computer coding, while also learning skills like collaborating, problem solving, and critical thinking.

The device lending grant will also expand the library’s program to lend laptops and tablets to patrons for use in nine library branches, allowing the curious to consume online content anywhere within the building, and providing more public access to computers.

Want to see the finch robots in action?  Here are the details:

When:  Thursday September 21, 2017 at 11:05 a.m.                  

Where: South Park Library

8604 8th Ave S, Seattle, WA 98108                   

Visuals: Twenty-five elementary students from South Seattle will demonstrate their skill in computer programming by using the new laptops to program and race finch robots through an obstacle course in the library.

This program builds upon two past Google grants that provided mobile WiFi hotspots for checkout from library branches.

 

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