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The Front Lines: iDX

girls who code at laptop id tech camp

When I started working on the Activity Curriculum for iD Tech, there were a couple of goals that Bryan and I had. One was to make an invaluable resource of activities that would make camp fun, unique, and incredible. One was to incentivize staff in a new and captivating way. The last, and arguably most challenging goal, was to create a way for campers to recognize the other camps of iD Tech.

Our first attempt was to make a unified sport called Virdball. The game required various levels of bouncing a ball through a roll of green tape. The game was challenging and fun (so we thought) but unsuccessful. While Virdball could be played anywhere and presented the kind of spectacle that would keep it interesting and possibly viral, the activity didn’t reach the level of popularity with the campers or staff necessary to make it sustainable. If you’re interested, search for Virdball on Youtube. Perhaps Bryan and I will do some more videos this Fall…

The next attempt was iDX, which I’ve written about in the past. iDX is a universal competition between four teams, Red, Yellow, Green, and Blue. Each camp belongs to one of those teams and is given 300 challenges. Each challenge has a point value between 1 and 10. The idea is that the campers can complete the challenges without too much intervention from the staff – and some of the activities can be completed in less than five minutes. Every iDX challenge also requires evidence to be posted onto the iD Staff forum, which Bryan goes through every week and updates the score.

Bryan has to deal with many pages of this every week – it’s actually quite unbelievable. I think we first knew that iDX was successful was last year when Bryan was getting over five pages of posts a week and sometimes more than ten!

The activities range from setting world records at Record Setter to digital gaming challenges (my favorite is playing a racing game while blindfolded) to art projects to performance pieces. Each is unique and fun and produces a plethora of wacky videos and images (which will be the main focus of my next piece).

The most exciting part of iDX this summer is that we are in the middle of the most intense competition we’ve seen in three years! The Green team is in the lead, but we’re only halfway through the summer and as you can see, every team still has a chance to take control.

iDX is a huge success in terms of participation, content creation and, most significantly, giving campers and staff members a view into other camps. iD Tech has over 70 locations that teach everything from game creation to photography to robotics (plug!), and we love showcasing that so no one leaves feeling like their camp is an island – instead, their camp is a piece of a larger whole, a community of campers and staff members just like them!