MOUSE Squad of the Year:
Chicago's TechCrew from Eli Whitney Elementary School
Best New MOUSE Squad of the Year:
New York City's Baruch Tech Team from Baruch College Campus High School!
Who Got Nominated?
Squads from across the country were asked to nominate themselves for the ultimate glory of being named MOUSE Squad of the Year. These are Squads that go above and beyond, providing tech support for their school, being active members of the MOUSE Squad Network, and taking on special projects. The MOUSE Squad of The Year marks not only the Squad's outstanding contributions, but their growth as a team and enthusiasm for their work. We had tons of fantastic nominations this year and it was a very hard choice to make. In the end the Eli Whitney TechCrew and the Baruch Tech Team took home the wins. Read more about these awesome Squads below!
Honorable Mentions to other Extraordinary Submissions!
This year's decisions were extremely tough. We received a lot of submissions for amazing MOUSE Squads. We would like to give special Honorable Mentions to the Digi-Sharks of PS/MS 188-The Island School in New York City and to the MOUSE Squad of Coronado Middle School in Coronado, California. You are both doing outstanding work in your schools and and we are incredibly proud of you!
We also want to recognize the outstanding contributions of ALL of our nominees for their awesome work. Keep it up!
About Eli Whitney's TechCrew!
The TechCrew of Chicago's Eli Whitney Elementary School had a tough start to the year when their Coordinator took a leave of absence. Despite this, the Squad kept the school's technology in tip-top shape. They stayed in touch with their Coordinator while she was away and were able to resolve problems and close cases on their own until she returned!
Now that their Coordinator is back, the MOUSE Squad meets after school three times a week to distribute cases, work on projects and make sure everything is running smoothly. This year, the school received new Mac laptops and iPads! The only problem was the school only had PCs before! What would they do? Don't worry, the TechCrew trained themselves and their teachers how to use the new computers and how to sync them with iTunes accounts! In addition, this MOUSE Squad submitted a whopping TEN mind-blowing DIY projects this year.
Here are some more examples of their work:
- Want to remove those pesky vocals from your favorite song so you can sing it karaoke-style? Click here to find out how!
- No headphones? Learn how to make a Post-It Note Speaker with stuff in your classroom!
- Click here to learn how to calculate resistor values for your next Garage Robotics project!
Congratulations Eli Whitney TechCrew on being MOUSE Squad of the Year!
About Baruch Tech Team!
The MOUSE Squad at Baruch College Campus High School in New York City may have only been around for one year, but they already have a secret handshake, a special logo and a one-of-a-kind robot! Each student in this Squad is responsible for maintaining particular pieces of technology throughout their building. Each Team member created their own regular maintenance schedules to check on the school's technology, while others taught themselves Python, created a video on the Do's and Don'ts of laptop use for students at their school and blogged about all their experiences!
In addition to all that, the Baruch Squad found time to create and submit EIGHT awesome DIY projects in lots of different formats and about lots of different topics.
Here are some more examples of their work:
- Learn how to make a musical greeting card for that special person in your life!
- Whoops, you forgot your calculator! Don't worry, you can just program one with Python!
- Tired of PowerPoint? Why not try a Prezi instead?
Congrats Baruch College Campus High School for being Best New MOUSE Squad of the Year!
It’s amazing to see MOUSE Squad students making such a difference in their schools, communities and in their own lives. We wish we had more prizes to give out, but remember that everyone in MOUSE Squad is still a winner.
We can’t wait for your submission next year! Keep being awesome MOUSE Squads!
The 2013 D.I.Y. Competition had more entries than we've ever had before, making this by far the toughest D.I.Y. decision we've ever faced. It was a big debate here at MOUSE HQ, but we are excited to introduce you to some truly exceptional projects!
Grand Prize: The "Teach the Teacher Series" from Emilie Ritchen Elementary School
The intrepid Golden Eagles MOUSE Squad at Emilie Ritchen Elementary School in Oxnard, CA, saw a need at their school and rushed to fill it: they found that some teachers were struggling to use essential classroom technology, and began a Teach the Teacher video series! We loved that these videos were created to solve a specific problem in this Squad's school, and the videos themselves are great teaching tools: they're simple, clear, and really teach the user something useful. Kudos to the Golden Eagles MOUSE Squad--we can't wait to see the next video in the series!
James, Jonathan, and Baker from the OIS Bulldog Squad at Orinda Intermediate School in Orinda, CA, earned their runner-up status with this awesome video tutorial breaking down different ways to serve in ping pong. They did a great job breaking down and demonstrating the moves, and we love that the final demonstrations also showed a great sense of humor! Congratulations, guys!
Henna and Hinikish, from the Bryant MOUSE Squad at William C. Bryant High School in Queens, NY, are runner-ups thanks to their fantastic website, What Is a Motherboard? This website does a great job explaining what a motherboard is and walking you through the process of replacing a motherboard in a desktop computer. Henna and Hinikish even cited their sources, which is awesome--it's important to remember that we all learn things from a mix of researching, reading, watching, and doing!
And a special shout-out...
We wanted to give a special shout-out to the PS 89 Defenders of Technology for their fantastic "What Is MOUSE Squad?" video--check it out to learn about the Defenders' work and how to care for laptops and laptop carts.
But wait! There's more awesome ahead...
Take a look at some of the awesome, creative, and unusual entries we received. This year's D.I.Y. Competition brought in the widest variety of projects we've ever seen! While we couldn't make every project a winner, we think that these amazing projects deserve to be recognized.
Projects that went...beyond the screen!
While in the past most D.I.Y. projects have tended to focus solely on technology, this year we saw some fantastic projects that dove into a very different set of skills. Check out "Parkour and Freerunning" for excellent breakdowns of flips, jumps and other tricks; watch "How to YOLO" to learn "how to live on the edge when you're a boring person"; discover a skill you never knew you had (dragon breath!); learn how to do a neat hand trick with this super-precise step-by-step tutorial; or get crafty and learn how to make a flower pen or blend color pastels!
Projects that captured the spirit of the D.I.Y. movement!
The D.I.Y. movement promotes and fosters all kinds of making and tinkering, particularly making things from scratch, recycling or upcycling, and making things from unconventional materials. A few D.I.Y. projects really got into this spirit, and we admire that! Check out some awesome projects in this vein, including Post-It Note Speakers and LED Throwies!
Projects that demonstrated technical wizardry!
So many of this year's amazing D.I.Y. projects took a long, hard look at technology and found awesome new ways to talk about it. Check out this video about how to make a video, a Prezi about how to make a Prezi, a short and excellent guide to Hackasaurus, a step-by-step screencast for improving your Windows 8 experience, this video demystifying how resistor values work, a tutorial on removing vocals from a music track, and an awesome online guide to working with iPads!
Thanks again to everyone who created D.I.Y. projects!
It was incredible to see the many skills and interests of MOUSE Squads across the nation--thank you for sharing with us, and remember: you can still check out projects and award wins to your favorites! MOUSE Squads of America, we salute your amazing maker-bility!
This summer come join youth from across New York City and show off how much game you've got. Join Come Out & Play Festival, ESI Design, Hive NYC, and the YMCA for an all-day event focused on designing your own real-world games!
Think you got game?
Want to design your own real world game with real professional game designers? Come design games with us! The two top games will be showcased at the Come Out and Play Festival in July!
- What: A FREE, one-day game design jam where teens work with professional game designers
- When: Saturday, June 15th, from 10am-5pm
- Where: YMCA Park Slope Armory, 361 15th Street between 7th and 8th Avenues in Brooklyn.
- Who: 13-18 year-olds
Directions: Take the F or G train to the 15th St/Prospect Park stop. Walk West on 15th St past 8th Ave. Park Slope Armory will be on your right.
- Lunch will be served
- Wear comfortable attire (sneakers or other rubber-soled shoes)
- Parents/guardians are invited to attend the final game presentations at 3pm
- Release forms must be signed in advance (sent via separate email after registration is confirmed)
For more information check out this page!