I live in Rio Rancho, New Mexico and my kids attend the Rio Rancho Public Schools District. One of the changes that have happened over the last couple of years in the district is the adoption of the Google Education infrastructure and the use of Chrombooks throughout all the schools. I’ve seen investment in classrooms where teachers now have over 30 chromebooks to use for classroom instruction.
With these changes, what I have not seen is any general education for the students, siblings, or parents in the community (and surrounding tribal communities). I decided to try and change that with the free resources available through the City of Rio Rancho.
I am a volunteer with the city and this enabled me to teach my Raspberry Pi classes in 2017 at the Loma Colorado Public Library. This library has great resources … rooms, tables, chairs, laptops, monitors, keyboards, mice, and great internet bandwith! So all I really needed to do was schedule and coordinate to get this new set of classes started.
One of the challenges in starting anything new is awareness, so I decided to use the Meetup.com to raise awareness initially, then moved on to a email list. The email list page is at:
We had our first class/meetup on July 27, 2019 at the Loma Colorado Public Library Auditorium, I brought 12 Chromebooks for folks to use … we had 11 people attend, some hands on time, and many questions around the Chromebook and Google services. I was excited about the attendance and am looking at holding this class once a month for now and maybe more frequent based on interest and demand.
I will be scheduling new meetups or classes via meetup.com so, keep an eye on this website for new events or check out to the library calendar.
My son Kyle participated in the Notah Begay III (NB3) Foundation’s “Health Kids! Healthy Futures! Native American Youth App Contest”. He teamed up with his friend Kaiya (who is homeschooled), to develop a mobile app idea targeted at Native Youth to help combat Type 2 Diabetes and Obesity. Their mobile app design (previous blog post here) was selected for the final round and combined with a third applicant’s idea to incorporate exercise and meal information. The three students then worked for another 6 weeks with a local software development company, 11 Online, to see their design become a reality and a minimum viable product (MVP) was created. Kyle and Kaiya split the $1750 prize money with the third participant, a native high school student from Albuquerque. Along with the award ceremony, we had a wonderful plant based dinner from ItalityNM.com from Jemez Pueblo, NM.
It was fun coaching Kyle and Kaiya through parts of the IBM Enterprise Design Thinking process to develop user desired outcomes to battle childhood Type 2 Diabetes and Obesity. All the players worked hard to develop the Mobile App MVP … please take the time to look at the photo gallery below and small video showing the early modeling of the app.
Here is the Figma link that the video was made from (not sure how long this link will be good):
This last weekend (Saturday 2/25), I held my first Introduction to the Raspberry Pi Hands on Workshop at the Loma Colorado Public Library in Rio Rancho, New Mexico. I had a total of 8 attendees (full house) ranging from youth to adults that wanted to know more about this inexpensive computer. Feedback was great and it ranged from having a great experience with a new educational computer to interest in physical compute (using the GPIO pins) and more advanced topics.
I am looking forward to refining the content for the future hands on workshops for the following teach dates:
I also want to thank the City of Rio Rancho and the Loma Colorado Public Library staff, the facility is a great place to teach about technology, the support was awesome to make this event happen, and the internet access speeds are some of the best in the state!
After some back and forth with the local library, I will now be teaching some free Raspberry Pi computer classes at the Loma Colorado Public Library in Rio Rancho, NM starting at the end of February 2017 (#RaspberryPiNM). Space is limited because this is a hands on event, so keep a eye out for the signup links on the Rio Rancho Public Libraries Calendar of Events page.
The planned dates are as follows:
February 25, 2017 (start with 8 students)
March 18, 2017
April 8, 2017
April 29, 2017
May 20, 2017
The content of the class will be based on some previous teachings on the Raspberry Pi which I have included here:
This is a very NICE update to the previous user interface and I think kids and adults are going to like it. The other updates are awesome as well like turning on/off the wifi, RealVNC server, and the SenseHAT emulator.
We computer users have become used to a nice user experience via many different products, nice to see the Raspberry Pi Foundation put some effort into this.
Thanks a bunch!
Here are some screenshots of my Raspberry Pi 3:
A whole new set of icons throughout the desktop and beautiful photos to set as a background image.
On Tuesday this week, September 27, 2016, I presented the Raspberry Pi computer to the Rio Rancho Public Schools (RRPS) – Native American Parent Advisory Council meeting. I had a 15 minute slot to cover this new little computer and show how it can be used as a tool to begin a journey learning about computer science, programming, and how to tinker with electronics. I passed out two Raspberry Pi 3s and one Raspberry Pi Zero for the show and tell portion. The audience was enthusiastic and really liked having the four Raspberry Pi 3s in the back of the room to check out and play with. Here is a link to my presentation and some pictures of the event. I’m looking forward to taking this talk to some of the local tribes here in New Mexico.