Computer Programming, Coding, 3D Printing, Animation, Video Game Design, Building in Minecraft, Scratch, Python, Java and Graphic Design Classes Begin in Westchester County on January 21, 2017

Let’s face it — kids can take a Scratch Programming class in many different places throughout Westchester County, or do the Hour of Code from home. There are a million and one ways to learn about 3D printing, computer programming or animation. You get the picture… And so do we.

But there’s the thing: experience. Meaningful learning is all about the experience. Knowledge retention happens when a person can put emotion behind the skills they learn.

Think about driving. Someone can show you or tell you how to drive all day long while you’re in the passenger’s seat, but until you get in the driver’s seat, get your hands on the wheel, put on your blinker, run over a few curbs and get pulled over for speeding, you really don’t learn very much. (We don’t encourage speeding, by the way! It was a metaphor…)

At the DAE, students drive. They get their hands on the tech. They try to go too fast and run into problems. We teach our kids about failure and how not to panic when something goes wrong — about how glitches are good because they teach us what we need to fix. We encourage thoughtfulness and problem solving, discussion and thinking outside the box.

Our world is so fast. It’s easy to throw information at people (especially kids) and expect them to get it. (Those kids with their iPads just know how to do all the things!) Classes at the DAE are different. They’re inclusive. They’re project-based. And they’re fun! We invite you to visit us and find out why.

Winter classes begin this weekend! January 21, 2017.

Visit us: TheDAE.com

Email us: info@TheDAE.com

Call us: 914-644-8100

2015 Midsummer Highlights at The DAE

Midsummer Recap

Before we relive the highlights of the first part of the summer, there’s still plenty of time to end your summer at the Digital Arts Experience. Summer Session 4 runs from August 17th to the 28th, and we end our summer camps with Summer Session 5 from August 31st to September 4th. If you can’t make it for the summer, don’t worry because Fall Registration is currently live and the The DAExpress is taking bookings for Minecraft birthday parties.

Class in MakerspaceOur summer kicked off with a record high number of registrations for Summer Session 1 compared to previous years. We greatly enjoyed the packed facility and buzzing energy that brought along. On the last day of the first session, the DAE hosted a celebration for our 3 year anniversary!

DAE 3 Year PartyIn addition to enjoying good food and company, attendants heard the DAE announce two new ventures: DAELearning and DAE Makerclub. DAElearning will be an online subscription based site that provides members with interesting, educational videos on Programming Languages, 3D Printing, Mac Basics, and much more.Members of DAE Makerclub will have complete and unlimited access to our facility including labs, 3D printers, and more.

DAE Makerclub

Then Summer Session 2 came along and broke the record the previous session had just set. This high number was partially due the numerous kids who reenrolled in our classes. Our site was at max capacity with every single computer being used! Summer Session 3 started smoothly and is currently going on. Check out a student made short film below.

Late Summer Computer and STEM Camp in White Plains of Westchester at The Digital Arts Experience

Summer STEM Camps

We’ve got you covered! While other camps end before August does, The Digital Arts Experience’s computer and STEM summer camps in White Plains of Westchester County, NY, keep on going into the first week of September. Listen to President Rob Kissner talk about how you should end your kids’ summer.

With courses in 3D Printing, Animation, Graphic Design, and more STEM subjects to choose from, your child is sure to find a program that they are interested in! Allow your children to finish their summer at the most fun and educational summer camp in Westchester.

For more information visit our:

YouTube Channel: http://youtube.com/digitalartexperience

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/TheDAExperience

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/TheDAExperience

Website: http://www.TheDAE.com

Registration Page: https://campscui.active.com/orgs/TheDigitalArtsExperience

Jeff Soto, programming Instructor at The Digital Arts Experience in White Plains, Westchester, NY.

New STEM and programming courses for kids in Westchester!

We, here at The Digital Arts Experience in White Plains, Westchester NY, are proud and excited to announce two NEW programming and web development courses for kids that we are currently adding, and a few extra courses coming this year!

Text-Adventures with Java:

We will be teaching an advanced Java Course that will build off of and develop the skills learned in our Java 101 Course. Students will spend time learning how developers in the real-world face complex problems. They will learn how to think ambiguously, write pseudocode, and develop algorithms to solve the problems they will encounter as they progress through the course. Furthermore, their Final Project will be in the form of a text-adventure, in which, the students will create their own story-line. Our objective is to teach the Java language in depth, while facilitating a fun, creative, engaging, and hands-on experience that encourages curiosity, teamwork, and critical thinking. This course will be a prerequisite to one of our future courses coming this year; Web Applications with Java: Hard-Coding a 2D game.

Programming 101 using Ruby:

This course is specifically designed to teach the core concepts of programming. We have designed the curriculum with the goal of teaching our students to think like a programmer. Students will learn to embrace abstract thought and practice common coding conventions. Being able to code with convention and conciseness in mind, is key to creating beautiful reusable code, that can be distributed worldwide. The Ruby programming language is currently sky-rocketing within the software industry, with employers seeking candidates whom are not only educated in the language, but are able to think pragmatically. This course assumes no prior programming experience, but is equally useful for those on an intermediate level.

COMING SOON:

  • Intro to JavaScript
  • Intro to jQuery
  • HTML5 Canvas: Game Development for The Web
  • Web Applications with Ruby on Rails
  • Android App Development with Android Studio
  • iOS App Development with Swift
  • Java Applets: 2D Game Creation

Why Take These Courses?

To put it simply…. because you should become digitally literate. Programming is, in essence, applied Math and Science. It teaches us to think smarter, faster, and more efficiently. It’s no secret that software and computers are changing our society. With so many of our industries relying on Software Programs to automate their daily tasks, it’s becoming more and more evident that we need to educate not only ourselves, but our youth. The tech industry is booming. Job growth is estimated to increase between 20% and 30% for Computer related fields by the year 2020. Employers are seeking computer literate individuals more than ever before. To add to that, in 2013, a study conducted by the Census Bureau found that 83.8% of households reported computer ownership, and 73.4% reported internet use. With STEM technology rapidly evolving and embedding itself in our daily lives, it is imperative that we learn how computers communicate, and what goes into creating, reading, and writing software programs. Below is a small list of a few jobs in the software industry and their respected average salaries: (Keep in mind the estimated 30% job growth in this industry)

1) Java Developers

2) Ruby Developers

3) Web Developers

To sum it up, we urge you to come learn with us. Tell your friends and family, and spread the word. The Digital Arts Experience of White Plains in Westchester is committed to empowering today’s youth, as well as, any adult whom wants to learn or sharpen their digital skills! Contact us via email, phone, or website. Thank you for reading!

-Jeff, Software Instructor at The Digital Arts Experience

Jeff Soto, programming Instructor at The Digital Arts Experience in White Plains, Westchester, NY.

Jeff Soto, programming Instructor at The Digital Arts Experience in White Plains, Westchester, NY.


To learn more about the programming, web development (HTML5), coding and STEM classes that we are offering for kids and teens in Westchester County, visit our website at www.TheDAE.com.

To view our After School schedule, click here.

To view our Summer STEM Camps, click here.

Spring Break STEM Programs in Westchester County

The Digital Arts Experience

Starting next week, The Digital Arts Experience in White Plains, Westchester County NY will be running Spring Break STEM programs for kids and teens in 3D Printing, Animation, Coding, Design, Electronics and more!

Spring 2015 STEM Camp Westchester

Spring Recess Tech Camp 1 Sessions available from Mar 30 – Apr 3, 2015

Click here to see the full schedule and register!

USE PROMO CODE: SPBREAK TO RECEIVE $25 OFF ENROLLMENT!


CAN’T MAKE NEXT WEEK? JOIN US FOR THE FOLLOWING WEEK!

Spring 2015 STEM Camp

Spring Recess Tech Camp 2 Sessions available from Apr 6 – 10, 2015

Click here to see the full schedule and register!

USE PROMO CODE: SPBREAK TO RECEIVE $25 OFF ENROLLMENT!


Minecraft & League of Legends Tournament

JOIN US FOR OUR NEXT GAMING TOURNAMENT DAY! LEAGUE OF LEGENDS & MINECRAFT PVP: APRIL 25TH.

JOIN US FOR OUR NEXT GAMING TOURNAMENT DAY!

LEAGUE OF LEGENDS & MINECRAFT PVP: APRIL 25TH.
CLICK HERE TO LEARN MORE & REGISTER!


Summer 2015 STEM Camp Westchester

We are now enrolling for our exciting Summer 2015 STEM Camps! Our summer programs start July 6th and run different programs all the way until the end of August. We have 5 different sessions:

Session 1 will run for 2-weeks from July 6th – July 17th.
Session 2 will run for 2-weeks from July 20th – July 31st
Session 3 will run for 2-weeks from August 3rd – August 14th
Session 4 will run for 2-weeks from August 17th – August 28th
Session 5 will run for 1-week at the end of the summer from August 31st to September 4th
Morning session from 9:30AM – 12:00PM.
Afternoon runs from 1:00PM – 3:30PM.

Students can attend for the full day where they choose a morning activity and a separate afternoon activity, or just come in for a half day!

CLICK HERE TO FIND OUR SUMMER STEM CAMP SCHEDULES!
SIGN UP EARLY & SAVE!

USE PROMO CODE: STEM2015 AT CHECKOUT AND RECEIVE 15% OFF A PROGRAM!

After School STEM Programs in Westchester

Written by Cristina Calabrese, Director of Operations & Founding member of The Digital Arts Experience

When The Digital Arts Experience (The DAE) of White Plains opened its doors in July 2012, our main purpose was to provide After School & Summer Tech Camps to kids and teens throughout Westchester County.

As The DAE began to expand upon the courses taught inside our facility, so did the demand for us to bring our programs offsite as well. With this came the idea for our Mobile Classroom, The DAExpress (The Digital Arts Express).

The DAExpress was created to provide the most cutting edge technology in a state of the art learning environment available to the Westchester community.

Inside The Digital Arts Express, or The DAExpress.

Inside The Digital Arts Express, or The DAExpress.

Able to accommodate up to 10 students at once, The DAExpress is designed to act as one of our classrooms on wheels. With this mobile computer lab, we can offer nearly every single class that we teach in our White Plains facility, anywhere in Westchester, Southern Connecticut and Rockland.

The DAExpress is equipped with 10 brand new Mac Book Pros, a Makerbot Replicator 2 3D printer, and the best digital teaching tools. We bring The DAE to you!

Since its inception in September, we’ve run classes and programs with nearly 15+ unique local schools and organizations, including:

  • Children’s Village of Dobbs Ferry
  • Don Bosco Community Center
  • Greenville School
  • Greenwich Academy
  • Greenwich Country Day School
  • Heathcote Elementary
  • JCC on the Hudson
  • Rye Arts Center
  • SAR Academy
  • Seeley Place
  • Solomon Schechter School of Westchester: Upper & Lower School
  • Westchester Hebrew High School
  • Westchester Library System
  • Westfield Day School
  • White Plains YMCA
  • White Plains Youth Bureau

…and more! We also run private, custom classes that we bring right to your door.

Students at Solomon Schechter show off their final projects in Scratch coding!

Students at Solomon Schechter show off their final projects in Scratch coding!

In addition to that, we don’t always use our Mobile Classroom when we travel to schools. Often times we will drive over and use the school’s computer room or media lab and provide classes out of there. In many cases, schools and organizations do not have the necessary equipment to provide such classes on their own. That is one of the reasons that The DAExpress came about.

The DAExpress allows us to bring everything: instructor, class content, and equipment. And the best part is – we come to you! Topics that we teach include:

  • 2D & 3D Animation
  • 3D Minecraft Animation
  • 3D Printing
  • Game Programming with Java
  • Graphic Design
  • Introduction to Computer Science with Python
  • Scratch Coding
  • Stop Motion Animation
  • Visual FX & Video Production
Animation Instructor Nicholas Sceusa teaching 3D Minecraft Animation using a powerful 3D Animation program, Blender.

Animation Instructor Nicholas Sceusa teaching 3D Minecraft Animation using a powerful 3D Animation program, Blender.

We can also provide Professional Development to school staff. In short, there is a lot we could do with our Mobile Classroom. As time goes by, we discover new and unique uses for it. We are excited to keep it “rolling” and see where the future takes us!

Do you know of a school or local organization in need of After School STEM related programming? Contact us at info@TheDAE.com or feel free to visit our website www.TheDAE.com to learn more.

Mobile STEM Class Westchester

The DAE’s Mobile STEM Classroom Rolls through Westchester!

The Digital Arts Experience’s first Mobile Classroom, dubbed The DAExpress, has been running workshops, presentations, private classes, birthday parties, after school & weekend programs and more in digital art, tech and STEM-related fields all throughout Westchester since the beginning of September.

Primarily running after school programs, The DAExpress works with a variety of elementary, middle and high schools within Westchester and Rockland County including:

Students take a break from playing Minecraft in our Mobile Classroom

 

 

The DAExpress is equipped with 10 laptops, a large display device for the instructor, and a 3-D printer which can be brought on location to run various programs for kids and teens.  The cost runs $250 per hour, so with a max of 10 kids, it is essentially $25 per kid per lesson, or $200 per kid for an 8-week session.

Check out the video showcasing the Mobile Classroom and its features:

To learn more about The DAExpress, its services, and how to book a program, call (914) 644-8100, e-mail info@TheDAE.com, or visit www.TheDAE.com.

Mobile STEM Class Westchester

The DAExpress is now rolling through Westchester!

Last month, The Digital Arts Experience started running classes out of our mobile STEM classroom, The DAExpress, at schools and private homes all throughout Westchester, Rockland and Fairfield Counties. While most of the classes take place on-site at schools for after school programming, The DAExpress also runs custom classes right outside of people’s homes and will soon start running Minecraft birthday parties for kids.

So what is the vehicle all about?

  • The DAExpress is essentially a DAE classroom on wheels
  • Can accommodate up to 10 students at once
  • Equipped with 10 brand new 15″ Macbook Pros
  • Makerbot Replicator 2 3D Printer available for 3D Printing classes
  • Runs after school programs, private classes or birthdays at your location
  • Equipped with 2 first aid kits, a fire extinguisher
  • A DAE staff member that is trained in CPR, AED & First Aid will be present at all times.

Well, this sounds really cool. But is it safe for the kids?

Rob Kissner, President of The DAE said,

“We have taken all measures to ensure the safety of each and every person that sets foot in The Digital Arts Express. While a program is in session, the vehicle will be parked with the emergency brake applied and wheels will be secured with industrial grade chocks.”

Kisser also goes on to add that the vehicle uses an advanced ventilation system using BlueTEC Clean Diesel technology to ensure that fresh air is continually circulated at a comfortable temperature.

More about BlueTEC Clean Diesel:

  • It’s the world’s most advanced, ultra-low emissions engine.
  • Using a solution called AdBlue, the system converts typical exhaust fumes into nitrogen and oxygen, which is naturally in the air we breath.
  • ADAC, Germany’s largest automobile association, rates BlueTEC as #1 in CO2 emissions.
  • BlueTEC is the greenest & cleanest diesel technology in the world.

How can I get involved?

For local schools, we’ve typically worked with the PTA president or the person in charge of after school or lunchtime programming. If you are interested in getting your kid’s school involved, e-mail Rob Kissner at Rob@TheDAE.com.

For a private lesson at your home, feel free to reach out to our Director of Community Relations, Jess Hachigian, and he’ll help you with everything you need to get it all set up!

For any other questions, inquiries feel free to give us a call at (914) 644-8100, e-mail us at info@TheDAE.com, or visit our website at www.TheDAE.com.

Why I Love Animation

by Jackie Garbuio, Intern

Ever since I can remember, I have always been obsessed with animated movies. Whether they were Disney, Pixar, or anything in between, I’m sure I have seen them. When I was in high school, some movies like Horton Hears a Who and Wall-E came out and from watching movies like that, for the first time I realized people actually made them. I know that sounds kind of silly in retrospect, but as a child, the thought never crossed my mind that people actually worked on animated movies and had that as their careers. However, because of this, I really started thinking about how amazing it would be to make things come alive in movies. I thought, “I want to do that.”

I have always been interested in art and though I honestly never thought my future would head in that direction, I’m sure glad it did! Since that moment, I’ve been going to school for computer animation and have learned more than I can even imagine. My classes have given me the chance to work with both 2D and 3D animation, allowing me to create my own characters and storylines in any way I want. In my classes, I have used programs like Maya, Mudbox, ZBrush, Flash, and After Effects. I have even done stop motion projects using cut paper, clay, my drawings, and even my friends to create stories. By taking all of these classes, I have gotten the opportunity to learn different aspects of animation like modeling, painting, storyboarding, texturing, lighting, animation, and a lot more.

Taking classes like this has proven to me that this is what I love to do. For anyone who has been interested in art, this field is definitely something to look into because you can get a chance to work in so many different aspects of animation or even filmmaking. After all of the hard work and patience you have to put into a project, you really get something to show from it, something you will really be proud of.

This summer at the DAE, I get the chance to help out in Nick’s Animation classes, using Adobe After Effects for 2D Animation and Blender for 3D Animation to help each kid create their own animated story. The kids create a character, animate it both in 2D and 3D and make a story in which it breaks out from inside a TV into the real world, changing from 2D to 3D. It’s been a lot of fun seeing the characters the campers have created and helping them through each step of the process. It’s been such a great experience and I’m happy to spend my summer spreading my love and knowledge of animation to children at the DAE.

Interested in learning about animation here at the DAE? We still have summer sessions running with 2D, 3D and Stop Motion with Lego classes being offered. Call 914-644-8100 or email info@thedae.com to give your child the chance to explore the awesome world of animation at The Digital Arts Experience!

Adobe AfterEffects Side Scroll Project at The Digital Arts Experience

The Digital Arts Experience of Westchester County recently finished an after school 2D Animation/Visual Effects teen class using Adobe AfterEffects. The goal of the final project named Project Scimenatar was to use all of the skills they learned and apply it towards creating their own side scroll video game.

We asked our Animation instructor, Nick Sceusa, who was recently interviewed by opensource.com based on his experience in teaching our 3D Animation class with Blender, to tell me about his experience in the 2D class. According to Nick:

The sidescroller idea came about a little over halfway through our current session. We had been learning After Effects with mini projects and it was going okay, but there was a definite lack of excitement. I needed to come up with a project everyone was interested in and could work on together. Me and the students always chatted during our breaks and I had a pretty good idea of what they were all interested in. I’m not sure when the “a-hah” moment came around, but this project came out of that need to make the class more interesting and engaging.

The first thing we did was sit down and plan out what we wanted to happen in our “game”. The number of enemies, what obstacles do we want, should we have health bars, what weapons should we have etc. All those little details were worked out beforehand and checked with how much time we had to work with. Once that was done, we moved on to storyboarding, which is essentially a visual representation of your script. In our case the script was: destroy all enemies. The storyboard allowed us to plan things out visually and served as a guide during the production phase.

The storyboard process.

The storyboard process.

Once we knew what would happen during the game, we moved over to the photo studio at The Digital Arts Experience. A green screen was setup and each student posed for whatever action they needed during the game.

Stephen poses in the Photo Studio for his 2D Animation class project at The Digital Arts Experience in White Plains.

Stephen poses in the Photo Studio for his 2D Animation class project at The Digital Arts Experience in White Plains.

Things like jumps, shooting, melee attacks etc. Every action required at least one photo. Some actions such as walks needed two. After getting our main cast captured additional characters and items such as the goombas and background were needed. Images from online were used for photo tracing in Adobe Illustrator and hand drawn images were scanned into Photoshop for coloring. This allowed students to work comfortably in a medium they were comfortable in and learn a bit about an additional program that works well with After Effects.

Now we moved into After Effects. The first thing we did was get our characters setup. After importing the original images we ordered and renamed them according to the pose This way we could call up the pose we needed at any time in a different composition within the project. Take a look at this photo of one my students Maggie:

1)This is the original imported image:

The original photograph in our studio

The original photograph in our studio

2)After being imported the green background is removed:

The green backdrop is removed

The green backdrop is removed

3) Accessories are added if needed:

Maggie gains a red lightsaber.

Maggie gains a red lightsaber.

4) The character is dropped into the background:

Background scenery is added.

Background scenery is added.

Each pose or image required these steps. After that each characters motion (enemy, obstacle etc) was animated by calling up a different pose, and moved within after effects. We also did some effects work and some sound design to really give the project some pizazz!

Overall, I’m very happy with the way the project turned out. The students did an amazing amount of work within a short amount of time. In fact this project ending up being so fun that I will be using this project in any future after effects class I do.  Thanks again to Maggie, Kendrick and Stephen for making it a fun project.

Check out the final project here:

 

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.

Starting the 2nd week of July, The DAE will be running Summer Camps for kids. The summer programs are designed to engage your child in fun, skill building multi-media projects in their chosen area of interest in either: Animation, Graphic Design, Photography, Moviemaking or Web Design. The classes are small with a maximum of 6 kids, 100% hands on and focus on collaboration so your kid/teen will develop social, technical and creative skills, and also leave with completed projects for a portfolio or college application! Check out The DAE’s summer promo video.


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 informati