[OLPC_Boston] [IAEP] Computer ClubHouse at the Boston Museum of Science

Mike Lee curiouslee at gmail.com
Thu Oct 22 23:00:38 EDT 2009

Cici, Amy and I finally got out to visit one of our local Intel Computer
Clubhouses. The manager, Alvaro Luna, runs four of them in Fairfax County,
Virginia. Alvaro came to our OLPC Learning Club meeting at the Arlington
Career Center back in September when Adam and SJ were in town and we all had
some robust conversation.

This group of Clubhouses is staffed and funded by Fairfax County Government
with additional funds from the Equal Footing Foundation for robotics
competitions. The clubhouse runs solely Windows-based machines as far as I
could tell. Alvaro actively uses Scratch, PicoCrickets and Lego Mindstorms.
The after school activities of the clubhouses seem like an ideal place to
jumpstart the use of Sugar on a Stick and promote the OLPC Contributor's
Program. Alvaro was eager and completely open to conspiring on some

I am mystified as to why there is only one Computer Clubhouse in
Maryland--Baltimore. While I really enjoy the vibe and people in NOVA, I'm
also going to try to amp up some activity in my local neighborhood of
Wheaton, MD in Montgomery County. Cici's school teaches basic Scratch
lessons and they are eager to have me involved.

My photos of the Fairfax Computer Clubhouse:



On Sun, Aug 16, 2009 at 10:58 AM, Mike Lee <curiouslee at gmail.com> wrote:

> One of these Computer Clubhouses is in Arlington, VA, not far from Sugar
> Labs DC. Maybe the Boston flagship can do an intro for us?
> Mike
> Sent from my iPhone
> On Aug 16, 2009, at 10:48 AM, Sean DALY <sdaly.be at gmail.com> wrote:
>  This seems like a perfect fit!
>> Sean
>> On Fri, Aug 14, 2009 at 2:58 AM, Caroline
>> Meeks<caroline at solutiongrove.com> wrote:
>>> http://www.computerclubhouse.org/
>>> The Computer Clubhouse is
>>> an international network of computer centers for youth.  Their "flagship"
>>> clubhouse is housed in the Museum of Science in Boston
>>> and they were kind enough to host us for two days this week.
>>> Keith has also mentioned that he would be able to host evening Geek
>>> meetups/hack sessions at the clubhouse.  I am copying OLPC Boston to see
>>> if
>>> there would be interest in moving from our meetup location from the
>>> coffee
>>> shop to this computer heaven in the coolest museum in Boston. :) (Sorry,
>>> I
>>> literately grew up at the Boston Museum of Science and the Berkeley
>>> Lawrence
>>> Hall of Science and just love science museums)
>>> Today we worked with 8 kids from Cambridge that had been coming to the
>>> clubhouse one day a week over the summer.
>>> The computer clubhouse provides professional level software for the kids
>>> to
>>> create with. Tens of thousands of dollars are spent on proprietary
>>> software
>>> and the kids do great things. Their favorite when I asked at the
>>> beginning
>>> of class seemed to be Garage Band.
>>> I asked these students if any of them had a computer at home.  They all
>>> did.
>>> In fact, some had a mac and a PC in their house.  I asked them if any of
>>> them had taken anything they had done at the clubhouse and continued to
>>> work
>>> on it at home. NONE of them had.
>>> The club
>>> houses are doing great things but the impact on the students lives and
>>> learning is limited to the time they are spending there.  One
>>> potential of Sugar on a Stick is to
>>> allow students to keep working and exploring beyond their few hours in
>>> computer paradise and have them not lose access
>>> when their program ends.
>>> Walter has met with the Auckland Clubhouse people and they were also
>>> interested in Sugar.  They might be a great partner.
>>> --
>>> Caroline Meeks
>>> Solution Grove
>>> Caroline at SolutionGrove.com
>>> 617-500-3488 - Office
>>> 505-213-3268 - Fax
>>> _______________________________________________
>>> IAEP -- It's An Education Project (not a laptop project!)
>>> IAEP at lists.sugarlabs.org
>>> http://lists.sugarlabs.org/listinfo/iaep
>>>  _______________________________________________
>> IAEP -- It's An Education Project (not a laptop project!)
>> IAEP at lists.sugarlabs.org
>> http://lists.sugarlabs.org/listinfo/iaep
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