In the context of dissemination and training of Waternomics project, our team organized as part of engineering week a workshop for introducing water conservation techniques and application building to school kids.
The engineering week is a yearly event to celebrate engineering profession initiated by Engineers Ireland, the professional body for engineers in Ireland, in order to promote the engineering profession and grow awareness of engineers in the community.
This blog post reports only on the Apps Building workshop. Another blog post will follow to cover the water conservation workshop.
“Thanks for the tour and workshop yesterday. It was enjoyable especially the App development workshop…in our science class in the afternoon it was all they talked about and were very enthused about engineering in general. They admit that it wasn’t an area they had considered before.”
The Apps Building workshop consisted of two consecutive sessions with two different groups of students. In the first group we had 15 students between 16 and 17 years old. In the second group we had 25 students between 13 and 14 years old.
For both sessions, we started by introducing Waternomics project and its objectives and how ICT can help increase water awareness. The students started to pitch ideas for different types of applications from simple monitoring to advanced prediction applications.
“Plus two pairs of students came up with two good project ideas for this years SciFest competition which will allow them also enter the BT Young Scientist competition a later in the year. So that’s a plus.”
Then we introduced MIT App Inventor 2 as a development environment. The students were excited to idea of building their own Android apps!
In the rest of the workshop, we were guiding the students to build very simple applications starting by a simple button and a textbox with hello world to a full water footprint calculator using data from the Water Flavours application developed within Waternomics project.
All the students left excited about their applications and were even happier to hear that they can continue building their apps at home. Hopefully we will get some apps from these students to include in our Waternomics platform!
This experience increased our appetite for future apps building workshops for other age groups and other locations. Follow up experiences will come soon!
Support document for the tutorial is available to download via this link!
— Wassim Derguech (@derwas) March 1, 2016