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In this workshop, we will focus on building blocks that allow you to play with polygons and spirals with TurtleStitch. If you create a design you love and do not have access to a computerized embroidery machine, global TurtleStitch community friends will embroider & mail you your design!

TurtleStitch is an activity and a coding environment. TurtleStitching is a mix of art, design and technology. It affords a rich area of exploration for beginners and experts. The struggle of thinking up a design, making it and productizing it, provides an environment of ups and downs and ups, capturing what Seymour Papert referred to as hard fun leading to a love and engagement for the activities.

Love for an activity is often disregarded and de-emphasized in the teaching / learning experience in schools with both teachers and learners. We want to remind teachers that it is OK to show this love and to encourage learners to also show their love playfully.

As a coding environment, TurtleStitch is written in Snap! and offers many Snap! tools to TurtleStitch users. TurtleStitch as its name implies focuses on instructing Seymour Papert’s turtle to draw patterns on a computer screen. These patterns are saved in a file format understood by computerized embroidery machines which then produce the embroidery on assorted fabrics.

Prerequisite: Create a username and sign up for a free account at the TurtleStitch website. Be able to work in split screen so you can see examples from remote screen sharing as you code in your own TurtleStitch pane.

Workshop Leaders

Susan Klimczak has been the Education Organizer of the Learn 2 Teach, Teach 2 Learn STEAM maker education & jobs program for teens of color in Boston, MA for 20 years. She loves organizing maker activities that include social justice, high + low technology & art.

Cynthia Solomon’s focus has been on creating thoughtful, personally expressive, and aesthetically pleasing learning environments for children. Her collaboration with Seymour Papert resulted in Logo, the first programming language designed specifically for children. Her paper with Papert, “Twenty Things to do with a Computer” is a classic in the field. Recently she co-edited a book of education essays, Inventive Minds: Marvin Minsky on Education.

Sarah Magner teaches in the Innovation Lab at Flint Hill School in Oakton, Virginia. She loves introducing students to coding and robotics through tinkering, and some of her favorite lessons involve TurtleStitch, Hummingbird Robots, Snap!, Automata, and Cranky Contraptions. She loves the intersection of computer science, math, and art.

Access to a computerized embroidery machine is optional, and we have global TurtleStitch community volunteers willing to embroider and mail TurtleStitch designs created in the workshop to participants.

1 h
Room 1
Snap!Con 2021