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Harry R. Schwartz

Software engineer, nominal scientist, gentleman of the internet. Member, ←Hotline Webring→.

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Teaching at RailsBridge

Published 13 Oct 2014. Tags: meetups, personal, rails, ruby, teaching.

A couple weeks ago I volunteered as a teacher at RailsBridge. RailsBridge is an organization that works to get women and other underrepresented groups involved in Rails programming. It organizes regular workshops in a bunch of cities where volunteer instructors coach participants through building their first Rails application.

Everything started with a pre-class meeting where volunteers shared tips on teaching effectively and reviewed the curriculum. Students and teachers both identify as either beginner, intermediate, or advanced. A bunch of us volunteered for “anything,” so we ended up assigned to the advanced class.

On the day of the event, I went down to Dev Bootcamp headquarters and met up with my fellow instructors from Neo, Kickstarter, and Spreemo (as well as DBC). I ended up teaching a section on the request-response cycle, which nicely satisfied my compulsion to draw pictures on whiteboards.

Best question: When an HTTP response is sent, does the client acknowledge to the server that it received the response? Answer: Sure, it totally does! That isn’t part of HTTP, but it happens on the TCP level.

By the end of the class, our twenty or so students had built simple single-model Rails applications. I hope we hooked a few of them! I’m looking forward to seeing some new faces at NYC.rb and Ruby Project Night.

Jenny volunteered as a TA in the beginners’ section, as did Abin, one of my former students. I hear that was a pretty good time, too!

Does all this sound fun? Do you know a little Ruby and Rails? Consider volunteering! It’s pretty fun, and it’s for a great cause.