Between 15-18 December 2014, I have developed a socio-educational action whereby I wanted to offer some disadvantaged students from rural areas the chance to come to town in order to visit the „Vasile Alecsandri” University and the city of Bacau, which was decorated for Christmas, but also the chance to learn a very cute programming environment called Scratch.
Initiated by three special people, Bogdan Patrut, Gabriela Chiribau and Victor Panta, the project has been carried out in an official setting, on the basis of a protocol of collaboration between the „Vasile Alecsandri” University of Bacau, the Primary & Middle School of Plopana (Bacau county), the Halcyon Consulting Company LLC (TX, SUA) and the L&S Soft publishing house in Bucharest.
Thus, 16 disadvantaged students (pupils), but with outstanding study results, from the schools of Plopana and Rusenii-Răzeşi (8 girls + 8 boys, 4 on each level of study) were selected by the teachers in these schools to attend initiation courses for the Scratch programme; the students were accompanied by Prof. Victor Panta, Prof. Nicoleta Paic, and Prof. Gheorghe Paic. The sudents’ transport to the University was in the former imprint and maximum security of Plopana School by its own minibus.
Six volunteers, students from the computer science specialisations (Emilia Mihaela Comânescu, Camelia Ionela Dorin, Robert Spătaru), and mathematics (Maria Elisei, Elena Andreea Sopcă and Marian Batin), have secured, under the guidance of Mr. Assoc. Dr. Bogdan Pătruţ, the teaching of computer programming concepts in Scratch environment, developed by University of MIT-Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Scratch is a free programming environment available online, and in the Romanian language, at http://scratch.mit.edu.
The University has provided the necessary logistics and conduct teaching hours, without disrupting the normal teaching activities in classrooms.
Prior to each day of the course, the students received a free meal at the University; the meal was paid by Halcyon Consulting LLC, of Pearland, Texas, USA, by the good will of Mrs. Gabriela Chiribău, CEO.
At the end of the activity, the students received a Scratch textbook in Romanian and a certificate of attendance, provided by L&S Soft publishing house in Bucharest, infomat courtesy of director Vlad Tudor. The children received gifts offered by volunteer students and Conf. Univ. Dr. Elena Nechita, who also organized visits to the University Campus.
Help us implement this project in other disfavoured regions with disadvantaged children! Please donate!