Closing the Coding Gender Gap in Italy
Constance Turrini started Girls Code It Better to crush stereotypes about computer science and technology careers and studies being exclusively for males by teaching middle school girls to code.
The program offers 45 hours of classes in 10 schools in Emilia Romagna, Tuscany, and Lombardy, Italy. Courses are hands-on and emphasize that girls can be creators. To date, 44 teachers and 74 coaches have trained more than 760 girls at 33 schools.
Turrini’s strategy is well thought out. She thinks that one of the main reasons girls are not entering the tech sector is because they are not exposed to its potential soon enough and has therefore carefully chosen this age group for her program.
Girls Code it Better employs the Lepida School method of teaching, which focuses on group project work and collaborative learning. The club uses open source tools such as Padlet, Popplet, Scratch, and App Inventor, among others. Using these tools, girls can create websites, apps, video games, robots, and 3D printed models.
They hope to expand to other areas of Italy and encourage other secondary schools to host workshops for middle school-aged girls.
If you’re a girl who is available to attend 16 2.5-3 hour meetings click here to sign up to participate. Each school chooses 20 girls to participate based on their motivation and level of responsibility.
Sign up here if you’re interested in becoming a partner.
Girls Code It Better is also a European Code Week event.