The World Wide Workshop announced today a $250,000 grant from Google.org to support its Globaloria social learning network, a new initiative that teaches youth game programming. Globaloria in the Valley was initiated in July, 2011 with a three-year grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation which works to promote informed and engaged communities.
“The goal of Globaloria in Silicon Valley is nothing less than community transformation,” commented Dr. Idit Harel Caperton, president and founder of the World Wide Workshop. "Right here in Silicon Valley we have a situation where if we invest two or three years in these kids, they can become future inventors and the highly-qualified employees the tech, entertainment, education and game industries desperately need."
The World Wide Workshop also collaborates with the Silicon Valley Education Foundation, and this Google grant makes it possible to add the participation of Overfelt High School to the already participating Christopher Middle School and Herman Intermediate School in San Jose’s Oak Grove School District, and several Boys & Girls Clubs in Silicon Valley. Overfelt’s catchment area, in the East Side High School Union District, represents a key constituency for this program.
“With more than 60 percent of students qualifying as low-income, and 27 percent English language learners, a successful implementation at Overfelt will demonstrate the importance of building capacity by spreading Globaloria-type computational thinking and hands-on learning among many more young people, community leaders, educators, and parents,” said Dr. Caperton.
Globaloria is a social learning network designed to teach young people how to invent, design and build educational game systems, conduct Internet research and learn to use social networking tools for education. In the process, participants learn to think and improve digital literacies that enable them to contribute as active members of their community to the ‘Innovation Economy.’ Piloted since 2006, Globaloria is at work today in middle- and high-school classrooms and community centers in five states: California, Florida, New York, Texas and West Virginia.