Tascasaurus Kit

Remixing the Web with Middle School Students

Introduction for Educators

  1. What is Hackasaurus?

    Designed as an open educational resource (OER) and an open source project, Hackasaurus promotes skills, attitudes and ethics that help youth thrive in today’s digital age. By making it easier for tweens and teens to experiment with the building blocks that make up the web, Hackasaurus enables them to move from digital consumers to active producers who view the web as something that can be constantly remixed and improved.

    Instead of using “kid-ified” sandboxes or artificial languages, Hackasaurus lets youth hack their favorite webpages using real programming code. The X-Ray Goggles bookmarklet enables learners to visit any webpage and inspect the code, with WebPad then allowing learners to take the next step by creating a copy of the webpage instantly which can be remixed to alter how it looks.

    Lastly, the Hackbook provides bits of commonly used code for learners to copy and paste. This is only the beginning though, as there are more tools being developed.

  2. What is TASCasaurus?

    TASCasaurus is a partnership between TASC, an intermediary organization, and Hive NYC and Mozilla, the two creators of Hackasaurus. The goal of TASCasaurus is to: • Prepare and motivate community educators to deliver technology-enabled, student-driven learning opportunities using the Hackasaurus tools. • Use technology to engage youth in a project that will increase both their digital literacy and interest in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics). A pilot project was implemented in six New York City after-school sites to engage youth in 4 to 8 grade to re-mix websites and research STEM content. This curriculum is a result of that collaboration.

How Do I Begin?

Update your Browser:

  1. Access a computer with high-speed internet and check to make sure it has the latest version of one of the browsers (to download a browser, click on the link and follow the directions).

    i. Google Chrome (Mac or PC):

    ii. ii. Firefox (Mac or PC):

    ii. iii. Safari (Mac):

  2. Install the X-Ray Goggles:

    • Go to: http://hackasaurus.org/en-US/goggles/
    • Try the first hack as shown (optional, but fun!)
    • Scroll down and look for the word “Install “on the left.
    • Click the link and follow it to an installation page. From there, click on the video that shows you how to add the bookmark bar to your browser and follow directions.

    Feel free to play with the Goggles to see how they work. If you wish to teach yourself HTML or CSS (the basic building blocks of websites), click here: https://developer.mozilla.org/en/HTML/ or see “Remixing the Web:Part 2” of this curriculum for more details.

    Continue to work through the following lessons, which demonstrate how to hack and provide you with the opportunity to practice what you will demonstrate to your kids (note; this is important as it will allow you to try out the various instructions and become familiar with everything). Don’t worry about not being an expert — everyone will learn and grow together!
  3. Tips for Classroom Preparation:

      Set up a welcome table in the front of the room: The table should include helpful handouts; sign in sheets; guide sheets; posters; a workshop schedule; and other materials you feel are necessary.
  4. Set-up participant computers:

    • Make sure you have enough computers available for participants or teams of participants.
    • Test the computers to make sure they work.
    • Make sure all computers are fully charged and/or have a power source.
    • Make sure the room has a stable internet connection that can support the number of participants expected.
    • If necessary, install the most up-to-date version of Firefox, Chrome or Safari on every computer (please note that Hackasarus DOES NOT work on Internet Explorer).
    • Pre-install the X-Ray Goggles. If the Goggles do not work, it is because the browser you are using is outdated. You may ask students to help you with this.
  5. Set-up instructor’s computer:

    • Install X-Ray Goggles and open all necessary webpages/files for the lesson.
    • Connect instructor computer to a projector or smart board for teacher intro and demonstration (if available). Note: YOU DO NOT have to have a projector/smart board for the lesson, but it can be helpful.
  6. Guide Sheets:

More Coming Soon!.......

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