Adult Classes in Photography, Coding, 3D Printing, Video Editing, Creating a Website & More in Westchester County

STEM/STEAM (Science Technology Engineering (Arts &) Math) Education isn’t just for kids in White Plains, Scarsdale, Valhalla, Larchmont and surrounding communities, but for adults as well. Watch DAE Founder & President Rob Kissner talk about our new DSLR Photography, Video Editing, Creating a Website, 3D Printing and Programming classes for adults.

WHO WE ARE:

A tight-knit community. We are all lifelong learners.
An escape. Life is crazy. Tech is fun.
Enthusiasts, leaders and innovators. We enjoy working with technology and get excited to share our knowledge with family and friends.
Role models for our kids. Because if we don’t adapt & grow with tech, how can we expect them to?
An experience. Things come and go but experiences last a lifetime.

Visit us: TheDAE.com/adultclasses

Call us: 914-644-8100

Email us: info@thedae.com

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Girls STEM Academy at The DAE in Westchester

The Digital Arts Experience Girls STEM Academy: White Plains, Westchester NY

Back in October, The Digital Arts Experience (The DAE) began their inaugural Girls STEM Academy class on Thursday evenings. This 12-week introductory program covered 3 different computer programming languages: Scratch, Python and Java where students spent 4 weeks on each topic. Each girl worked hands-on in a small, project-based classroom setting to explore these powerful coding languages with seasoned DAE instructor, Emily Angell.

Emily has been teaching classes at The DAE since its inception over 2 years ago. With a degree in audio engineering, she started out teaching music classes. Seeing Emily’s excellent teaching skills and ability to connect with her students, The DAE wanted to challenge her even further. Soon thereafter, Emily started learning Scratch, a code free introduction to computer programming that empowers students to create stunning animations, games, interactive art and more, with the intention of teaching it at The DAE.

Emily Angell, Scratch instructor at The Digital Arts Experience excites her students and makes learning fun!

Emily Angell, Scratch instructor at The Digital Arts Experience excites her students and makes learning fun!

Fast forward more than a year later, Scratch has taken off as one of the most popular, successful classes run at The DAE thanks to Emily’s ability to learn the material and translate it into an educational, challenging, but most of all fun program for the students! When asked to take on the challenge of learning Python and Java, Emily never once hesitated or gave push back. In fact, she was eager to take her teaching skills to the next level.

“Learning a new program, especially one that may not be in your wheelhouse, can be really intimidating,” she says. “But knowing your resources and having confidence in your own ability to learn something new, even if it’s difficult, is what we’re trying to foster here.  Sure, this class covers programming basics, but what I’m trying to do is teach these girls how to think.”

The Digital Arts Experience (The DAE) is dedicated to providing quality and enriching STEM programs to young women and girls in Westchester County, NY. Being a strong proponent of STEM-powered programs, The DAE also strives to empower young women and encourage them to partake in non-traditional fields that are most typically dominated by men.

The DAE runs after school programs and summer camps for kids and teens in White Plains, Westchester NY using the most up to date digital arts tools and technologies. It’s mission is to facilitate learning in an open, collaborative, hands-on environment that fosters creativity, critical thinking, and openness.

Girls Coding Academy Westchester

Students at The Digital Arts Experience in White Plains, Westchester, NY, Girls STEM Academy learning Scratch, Python and Java coding taught by Emily Angell.

Landscape Shot of Girls STEM Academy at The Digital Arts Experience

Landscape shot of The Digital Arts Experience Girls STEM Coding Academy class in session.

 

WOMEN AND GIRLS IN SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY, ENGINEERING & MATH (STEM)

“If we’re going to out-innovate and out-educate the rest of the world, we’ve got to open doors for everyone. We need all hands on deck, and that means clearing hurdles for women and girls as they navigate careers in science, technology, engineering, and math.”

-First Lady Michelle Obama

THE FACTS

(source http://gettingsmart.com/2013/11/facts-women-stem)

  • STEM careers are the fastest-growing jobs in the United States, yet women make up only about a quarter (24%) of STEM workers.
  • The 2013 average salary in Computer Science was $59,977. Nearly $10-$20,000 more than other fields commonly occupied by women.
  • Although the number is increasing, there are still more men consistently earning Science & Engineering doctorates.
    • In 1991, 17,214 men earned Science & Engineering doctorates compared to 7,481 women.
    • In 2011, 15,364 women earned Science & Engineering doctorates compared to 20,887 men.

“When you give a girl a chance to build a robot when she’s 5 or build a rocket when she’s 10, she will have the inspiration and the know-how to become interested in those fields and see her future in those fields”

-Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y.

GET INVOLVED

Interested in learning more about The Girls STEM Academy at The Digital Arts Experience? Custom and private classes also available. Feel free to e-mail Cristina@TheDAE.com.

Ring in the New Year: Family Friendly New Year Activities in Westchester

The Digital Arts Experience is excited to support the New Rochelle Downtown Business Improvement District and our friends at Harquin Creative Group by helping Ring in the New Year on December 31st at New Roc City.

Ring in the new year new rochelle

According to NewRochelleNY.com the festivities are set to begin at 10:30 am and will feature face painting, arts and crafts, martial arts and sports demonstrations, snacks, clowns, magicians, games and more. At noon, 325th Anniversary Chair Marianne Sussman and committee members will join radio personality Jimmy Fink of 107.1 The Peak to ring in 2014 in true Times Square fashion with a thrilling release of thousands of festive, brightly-colored balloons!

Ring in the New Year Balloon Drop

If you’re looking for a fun, family-friendly way to spend your new year (where you won’t be out too late!), definitely check out Ring in the New Year tomorrow, bright and early!

Ring in the New Year Kids

An Hour of Code in Westchester: If this girl can learn computer programming, so can you.

Written by Emily Angell, Event Coordinator & Recording Studio Manager at the Digital Arts Experience, White Plains, NY.

I’ll be the first to admit that the term “coding” terrifies me, conjuring images of sitting in front of a computer for hours being forced to do math and look at numbers and logic statements, where inevitably I will fail at the most basic of tasks.

Fast forward to code.org‘s challenge for Computer Science Education week.  I began watching the creative and yes, somewhat inspiring videos all about learning to code, and how enjoyable it could be. And how beneficial! In addition to that, a couple of months ago we rolled out our first Game Programming with Java class at the DAE, where the kids literally build their own Rocket Launch game using Java (which can also be used in practical applications like coding elevator systems).  So I thought to myself, Okay Em, it’s time to get with the program.

Pun.

I began watching the first tutorial.  I learned single FORWARD and TURN commands that would help the angry bird get the pig.

Hour of Code

And poof! Just like that I’m gratified. My angry bird got his pig. Mission accomplished.  8 lines of code in and I was on a roll, thus feeling compelled to go on.

Hour of Code

Suddenly, Mark Zuckerberg appears onscreen to tell me about loops, or simply repeating a command.  The repeat command allows the user to specify the number of times a command should repeat.  In a sense it encapsulates any command or series of commands inside of it, saving hundreds or even millions of lines of code.

Hour of Code

Next, Chris Bosh appears in a video explaining the REPEAT UNTIL box.  Which specifies that any command or series of commands inside of it repeat until a designated event or command takes place.  In this case, the commands were to repeat until the zombie reached the sunflower.

Hour of Code

I must also mention the genius of this particular intro to coding… the zombie proclaimed “braaaaaains” every time he reached the sunflower and that was just flat out encouraging for me.  But you don’t have to take my word for it… (just visit code.org).

Hour of Code

Next I explored IF statements. Basically, I would specify that the zombie would move forward.  Then, I would include that it should move left IF there were an option to do so.  Bill Gates did a nice job of explaining it to me.

Hour of Code

Lastly, we came to IF ELSE commands. I specified that the zombie should move FORWARD in the maze.  IF the zombie could move LEFT, it should. ELSE the zombie should move RIGHT (if it was unable to  move FORWARD or LEFT).  These basic commands enabled me to navigate the zombie maze with a very simple set of commands.  The crazy thing is, that these coded commands can be applied to something as small as an angry birds game, or as big as a Mars ROVER expedition.  My mind is still unboggling itself.

Hour of Code

Victory!  The first hour of code under my belt!  What’s funny is that I’m intrigued by how creative I can get with coding… which was something I would have never thought of before this moment.

Moral of the story: step outside of your comfort zone.  Try something new. Parents: encourage your kids to try to it too.  Kids: DO try this at home!

Minecraft Tournaments Come to Westchester

Minecraft Tournaments Come to The Digital Arts Experience Westchester County, NY – Nov. 20th, 2013

Written by Cristina Calabrese, Director of Operations and founding member at The Digital Arts Experience

Minecraft at The Digital Arts Experience

Millions of kids and teens are currently obsessed with a video game called Minecraft. But with the stigma that comes with most video games, does that mean your kids are in trouble?

Our simple answer: no.

According to a recent article in the New York Times entitled, “Disruptions: Minecraft, an Obsession and an Educational Tool”, writer Nick Bilton goes on to say,

…like the name suggests, the goal of the game is to craft, or build, structures in these 16-bit worlds, and figuring things out on your own is a big part of it. And parents, it’s not terribly violent. Sure, you can kill a few zombies while playing in the game’s “survival mode.” But in its “creative mode,” Minecraft is about building, exploration, creativity and even collaboration.

It’s true.

This past weekend, The Digital Arts Experience in White Plains, NY held its inaugural Minecraft build-off tournament for kids ages 9-12. Overwhelmed by the response, the event ended up overbooking with several kids on the waiting list.

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These kids needed absolutely no direction. Not one kid sat there, stumped and said, “I don’t know what to build”. The creations and structures they built were astonishing. Treehouses suspended in the air, a lighthouse with a self-replenishing cafe, a rocket ship, a greenhouse. The detail and craftsmanship was just incredible.

Bilton goes on to say,

…a school in Stockholm made Minecraft compulsory for 13-year-old students. “They learn about city planning, environmental issues, getting things done, and even how to plan for the future,” said Monica Ekman, a teacher at the Viktor Rydberg school.

The Digital Arts Experience has been looking for ways to engage kids using exciting, cutting-edge technologies. These Minecraft Tournaments spark creativity, critical thinking, application of the resources around them, quick problem solving and innovation.

As a result, The DAE is proud to announce the next date for its Minecraft Tournament:

WHEN:

SATURDAY, January 11, 2014

AGES 9-12: 1:00PM – 3:00PM

AGES 13-16: 3:30PM – 5:30PM

WHERE:

THE DIGITAL ARTS EXPERIENCE

170 Hamilton Avenue, Suite 100

White Plains, NY 10601

(914) 644-8100.

www.thedae.com

REGISTER:

http://fs21.formsite.com/TheDAE/form9/index.html

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Coworking in a Creative Space

by Remy Kuhn, intern

Artist, lawyer, accountant, engineer, retailer, designer, you all have a certain idea about the type of place you’re supposed to work. Many business professionals are used to a typical office building with cubicles, a conference room, private desks, stylish spaces, etc. Then, there are the entrepreneurs who work out of their own homes for a startup and are sometimes frowned upon because it is too laid back of an environment and, thus, not as legitimate. However, it’s truly the type of profession you have that determines what space may work best for that particular job. Some may feel that being in a four-wall confined workspace helps them focus and get the job done, especially in the corporate world.

We here at The Digital Arts Experience, however, recognize that the creative fields are the exception where things are done a little differently. Creative fields working differently in less confined spaces is not something that should be looked down upon or not taken seriously; it is just a completely separate field. Creativity promotes working together, where having a friendly, inviting environment and an inspiring place is a top priority.

At The DAE, we have created a coworking space for creative individuals and business to work in an environment where their ideas are encouraged and improved. Coworking for creative companies allows for a means of a support system where creative juices are always flowing. Groups of people to turn to for advice, second opinions on projects and ideas, approval of your work and assistance push you to your greatest potential through providing constructive criticism. Working in these types of places is all about interaction, bouncing ideas off each other and constant communication.

I know that when I work in the art studio at school or when I come into work at The DAE, being around people and seeing others work creatively inspires me to get started and makes it easier to stay in the creative mode. When you see other talented people work and you get their input on new ideas, it only makes you want to do just as good of a job, if not better, because a little healthy creative competition will produce the best outcome!

As an artist, I know that design has a lot to do with interaction and communication because when designing for a website, logo, company, etc, you want to make sure that users understand and enjoy it as well. Collaboration allows people to add to each other’s ideas, which produces the best possible web interfaces and media design that are user-friendly and appealing to look at the same time.

In The DAE’s space, we have Silverback Social, Harquin Creative Group, New York Institute of Social Media, Counterspace, as well as many individuals who come in on a regular basis to use our facility. Our community provides a friendly working environment so, instead of dreading work in a cubicle for 8 hours a day, our coworkers are constantly communicating and becoming friends with each other, further fostering creative growth. We are proud to offer our space to such talented people whose expert advice and input helps us all reach our highest potential each day! Connecting with and surrounding yourself with fellow creative people in the workplace is key to a successful creative business!

3D Character Design

Intro to 3D Animation with Blender: Classes at The Digital Arts Experience in Westchester

Hey Westchester! Summer is fast approaching. It officially begins in the Northern Hemisphere on June 21, 2013, at 1:04 A.M EDT, to be exact. At around the same time, The Digital Arts Experience (The DAE) in White Plains, NY will be busily preparing to begin its summer camps for kids and teens that start the second week of July.

Although their camps will run Monday through Friday from 9:00AM – 4:00PM, The DAE wanted to provide alternate options for weekend classes. Starting the day after the summer solstice, The DAE will begin an 8-week Saturday 3D Animation class for teens ages 16-20.

The class, entitled “Intro to 3D Animation using Blender” will give teens the opportunity to explore the open source program Blender, and learn how to create their own stunning 3D characters and animations.

The DAE’s very own Animation instructor, Nicholas Sceusa, was recently interviewed by Phil Shapiro, educator and open source software enthusiast via opensouce.com. In the interview, Nick discusses his use of Blender at The Digital Arts Experience in Westchester, and how he teaches it to high school students. To view the blog entry, please follow the link: Teaching the open source creative tool, Blender, to high school students.

The Digital Arts Experience’s classes are small, 100% hands on and focus on collaboration so your teen will develop social, technical and creative skills for the present and for the future. The classes are held at a max of 6 students so that everyone gets the personal, individualized attention they deserve. Everyone also gets their own 21.5” iMac computer to work on throughout the class, to enable them to work with the most up to date digital arts tools and technologies. To sign up today, please refer to the teen program application form.

As for the Summer Camps at The DAE, kids & teens can choose their area of interest in either: Animation, Graphic Design, Moviemaking, Photography and Web Design. These 2-week programs are all project based, so everyone will leave with completed projects and work to show for a portfolio. To view the summer camp application, please refer to this link.

The Digital Arts Experience (The DAE) is a community focused learning & production facility located in downtown White Plains that teaches courses for kids, teens and adults in Animation, Graphic Design, Moviemaking, Photography, Web Design, Blogging, computer/smart phone basics and more. In addition to teaching classes, The DAE also offers creative and design services to help your business grow. With their in-house professional photography/video studio, fully equipped recording studio, 4 computer labs with all of the latest professional software and industry active staff, The DAE prides itself on being not only a resource for the community, but a productive place you can go to meet other like-minded individuals who share your interests.

Stop by at any time for a tour of its brand new, state-of-the-art 8,000 sq. ft facility, or feel free to call 914-644-8100, e-mail info@thedae.com, or visit www.TheDAE.com for more information!