Articles

BlerDCon & CyberninjazBishop Walker & CyberninjazFull STEAM AheadUSA STEM FestivalWhy Choose a STEAM Summer CampGirls in Stem

BlerDCon & Cyberninjaz July 3 2017

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From June 30th - July 2nd Cyberninjaz attended the first BlerDCon event. Some of you may be wondering, “What is BlerDCon? ”The term “Blerd” stands for “black nerd”, while con is short for convention. So yes, “the melanin was poppin’.” Around 1,000-1,500 people, a majority of whom were minorities, attended the three day event that celebrated the individuality of the fans of cosplay, anime, manga, superheroes, games and much more. From the video game lobby to the artist/ vendor room to the multiple panels the event had planned, there was always something fun to keep people of all backgrounds informed and entertained. We especially enjoyed the old school video games displayed on the center floor.

At BlerDCon we were stationed in the vendor section where we were able to mingle with a lot of the talent behind local books, media and other services that are vital to keeping the local artistic community alive. We set up early morning on Friday and stayed until the very end on Sunday. In that time we took dozens of pictures (check out Instagram @Cyberninjazkids) to capture the memorable time. While the BlerDCon scene differs from our usual technology themed events, we were incredibly delighted to able to connect with different groups of people. We loved seeing a large minority audience gathering around and uniting under common “nerdy” interests.

This event was the first and hopefully not the last of it’s kind. It is of utmost importance to make sure that all minorities feel represented in the the world of Geekdom, especially since it is easy to for minorities to feel overlooked or underrepresented. While it's unfortunate that sometimes minorities feel ignored, it solidifies the importance of this event while at the same time it gives you a strong example of the black nerd experience. Thank you to George Hilton who invited us to attend and everyone else who made it possible for an event like this to happen. Looking out for BlerDCon 2018!

-Jeff Melvin

Bishop Walker & Cyberninjaz June 22 2017

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STEAM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math. These five disciplines are vital for future economic growth. Traditionally, these difficult topics are taught separately. Recently, efforts have been made to connect all five of these disciplines so that they can be taught in unison. Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math are undoubtedly deeply connected subjects. Art, and design, create innovative products and solutions. Creativity propels our economy further because artists ask the deep questions. They ask about themselves, life, love and more. These insights often guide us to where we need to go as a collective. We should fully expect that in the near future many of our most innovative leaders will come from an art or design background. Think of this, in the real world science relies on mathematics, technology, and engineering. The hope is that when taught together students will be able to connect and understand the deeper associations between the subjects. The ability to see the similarities and translations leads to a strong link in students pursuing further education and careers in STEAM fields. STEAM encourages children to engage and examine the world in new ways. This is a scientific world influenced by artistic creativity and there are a plethora of fun, engaging and practical ways to learn about it. Believe it or not the best times to start is between K-6. Quick Facts (STEAM Studies)

The world has gone from mainframes to PCs to smartphones and tablets. IT (Information Technology) has been at the center of this dramatic transformation for the past 30 years. 66% of students and 76% of parents of K-12 students agreed that the U.S. is doing a “poor job” of teaching STEM subjects compared to other countries. Many professionals in these fields claim to have fun and feel fulfilled because they have the ability to engage in hands-on tasks and work on developing business solutions (like apps for example) that drive their companies to be more efficient and effective. Understanding art teaches the kind of risk-taking and creative problem-solving that can be applied to health care, transportation, infrastructure, climate change and beyond. To learn more contact us at www.cyberninjaz.com.

Cyberninjaz - Jeffery Melvin

Why Choose a STEAM Summer Camp April 6 2017

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STEAM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math. These five disciplines are vital for future economic growth. Traditionally, these difficult topics are taught separately. Recently, efforts have been made to connect all five of these disciplines so that they can be taught in unison. Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math are undoubtedly deeply connected subjects. Art, and design, create innovative products and solutions. Creativity propels our economy further because artists ask the deep questions. They ask about themselves, life, love and more. These insights often guide us to where we need to go as a collective. We should fully expect that in the near future many of our most innovative leaders will come from an art or design background. Think of this, in the real world science relies on mathematics, technology, and engineering. The hope is that when taught together students will be able to connect and understand the deeper associations between the subjects. The ability to see the similarities and translations leads to a strong link in students pursuing further education and careers in STEAM fields. STEAM encourages children to engage and examine the world in new ways. This is a scientific world influenced by artistic creativity and there are a plethora of fun, engaging and practical ways to learn about it. Believe it or not the best times to start is between K-6. Quick Facts (STEAM Studies)

The world has gone from mainframes to PCs to smartphones and tablets. IT (Information Technology) has been at the center of this dramatic transformation for the past 30 years. 66% of students and 76% of parents of K-12 students agreed that the U.S. is doing a “poor job” of teaching STEM subjects compared to other countries. Many professionals in these fields claim to have fun and feel fulfilled because they have the ability to engage in hands-on tasks and work on developing business solutions (like apps for example) that drive their companies to be more efficient and effective. Understanding art teaches the kind of risk-taking and creative problem-solving that can be applied to health care, transportation, infrastructure, climate change and beyond. To learn more contact us at www.cyberninjaz.com.

Cyberninjaz - Jeffery Melvin

Full STEAM Ahead: DC's need for STEAM education July 18th, 2017

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Where is the STEAM education in D.C.? STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math) education fosters students’ ability to become better problem solvers, thinkers and effective members in diverse teams. Having skills in STEAM allow children to prepare for the changing job force and the global marketplace. So when I look at Washington, D.C. and see a lack of STEAM interest in SE (south-east) D.C., the question I ask myself is “Where are all the kids STEAM programs”? This is an important question. In a growing age where employers are having a hard time finding skilled workers, STEAM education is becoming increasingly essential. The factor that may someday limit the U.S.A. from staying ahead of the curb is the lack of early introduction into STEAM. Needing to investigate this question further, I called a number of schools within the lower income bracket of DC to ask about the quality of STEAM education in that particular institution.

The answer was similar for anyone who picked up my call. When asked, “what more would you like to see done about the future of education at their schools?” the common response was that “there definitely needs to be more STEAM activities at the school” and that “STEAM needs to be introduced earlier at the elementary level”. I absolutely agree, and Cyberninjaz is here to help.

In the desolate STEAM field that is the SE D.C. area, we have to not only think about what we can do but also be appreciative for companies and nonprofits that are fighting to make a difference. We have to appreciate programs like Cyberninjaz, an education company based in Maryland who hosts consecutive 2 month long coding afterschool programs. Also, look to Horizon Greater Washington, an organization who offers a 6-week summer robotics program that has been running since 2008.

Since current consensus is that there are not enough STEAM education programs in the schools, how can parents and guardians help with this problem? The solution is to connect your local principal and local education groups to see if they would be a good fit. Taking the initiative to bring local education programs to schools will enhance your children’s education. In addition, contacting your local political representatives to ask about how they are assisting with programming for low-income communities is also a good start. Help is out there, we just have to look for it, request it, and pursue it!

Cyberninjaz - Jeffery Melvin

USA STEM Festival April 15 2016

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The USA Science and Engineering Festival took place from April 15th through the 17th at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington DC. We arrived early on Tuesday to start setting up our booth. When we walked in we noticed all of the amazing booths being set up by Lockheed Martin and, NASA. About 365K people of all ages attended to celebrate science with over 3000 fun, hands-on activities, more than 30 stage shows, and some of the biggest names in STEM.

On Friday after we arrived in the morning it was about an hour before we saw any real traffic. After we started playing our game kids started to show up eagerly awaiting the next round. Kids of all races really enjoy playing Brawl. Which was our four person 2D Battle game which our kids create it at the camp last year using gamesalad(program). While talking to the parents we elaborated on the fact that we not only work to educate in stem education we are also working to combat childhood obesity which runs rampant among youth today and consumes 30% of American kids. Throughout the weekend we passed out raffles offering custom posters and scholarships to our camp.

Saturday was one of the busiest days of the entire weekend. Packed wall to wall with parents and children alike, eager to learn about stem's latest offerings. With good reason of course. Who could resist 3-D printing and science fair worthy projects you can do at home in a few minutes. Where we stood out among the others was in our ability to entertain the children for an extended period of time while being able to discuss the importance of why they should attend summer camp. Being able to have actual one on one conversations with people was a big boost of faith to further what we believe we could do.

By Sunday, the phrase "We are Cyberninjaz a Stem Summer camp based in Potomac Maryland specializing in Programming, Game design, Animation, 3D design, video production, and fitness" was seared in my head. With all that was going on and all the amazing people we met, we were honored just to be among the ranks. Our goal at the festival was to be able to reach out to as many people as possible which we feel that we were able to do with ease, and that we are competing against dancing robots. Literally "Dancing Robots". We made new connections and friends were made new campers will see us this summer and hopefully we will see you soon.

Cyberninjaz - Jeffery Melvin

Girls in Stem November 14, 2015

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Click for WI Bridge Contributing Writer article

On November 14, 2015, we attended the 4th annual Girls and STEM Summit in Baltimore. It was a cold morning, but that didn't stop us or the 50+ girls who came eager and ready to learn about STEM. As we arrived, we met with representatives of companies who were presenting like Monsanto, Code in the Schools, and Cover Girl. We soon set up our exhibit and began making new friends.

Everything was going great at our exhibit table. We were asked to make an unexpected presentation to the whole group in an hour. With the pressure on, our team quickly got together and made a solid game plan. We gave a brief history of who we are and what Cyberninjaz does, followed by a demo of some of the projects our Cyberninjaz youth completed last summer. The girls were amazed at the games we demonstrated and some were deeply inspired to pursue coding and create their own programs.

This was our first exhibition and we felt like we made a great connection with the girls there. We went to spread the joy of coding and to network with others involved with STEM and we definitely succeeded in both. All in all, this was a great day for Cyberninjaz, and we are looking forward to meeting more STEM students and supporting them in their exploration and mastery of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math.

Cyberninjaz - Jeffery Melvin


location

ST.ANDREW'S EPISCOPAL SCHOOL 8804 Postoak Road Potomac, MD 20854

phone: (301) 983 5200
email: info@saes.com

contact

Cyberninjaz LLC Summer tech camp.

phone: (310) 754 0745
email: info@cyberninjaz.net

services

Teaching
Mentoring
Education
Talent
Technology

jobs

Currently seeking volunteers for summer 2017.

email: jobs@cyberninjaz.net