A Day in Gamer’s Gathering

The atmosphere is electric as excited screams fill the air. The final match is ending and the blue team is leading in rounds. As the final round ends, the last member of the Red Team is finally found and frozen. Everyone rushed to the middle of the main room to congratulate the winning team! Our Xonotic freeze tag match wrapped up and the blue team, Team Puerto Rico, won! The names “Dante,” “Daysha,” and “Arayna” topped the leaderboards! Through their win, Team PR draws closer to their goal of donating the computers we have been building to Puerto Rican relief efforts.

I’ve been volunteering at the Kingsbridge Heights Community Center for more than a month, after recently graduating from Horace Mann High School. Over this period of time, I have helped to teach two classes for middle and high school students: Tech Remix and Gamers Gathering.

In Tech Remix, students have been learning about computer use through software and hardware. In the software section, the class has begun to learn about digital literacy, basic HTML, and web design. From the hardware side, students have been learning about internal computer parts and their function as well as repairing old, donated computers. Ultimately, the students then either keep them or donate them to those in need in Puerto Rico or other places.   

In Gamers Gathering, we have been playing games, Xonotic and Invisigun for an in-class tournament and practice for regional tournaments, each with real prizes. The winners and participants in the in-class Xonotic tournament won a free copy of the video game Nuclear Throne; a free copy of the video game Sky Rogue; and a ticket to Comic Con. We expose the students to teamwork and skills useful in the digital and real worlds. Later in the year, we will also teach basics of game design!

Interacting, participating, and leading these classes is incredibly enjoyable, and it provides valuable experience in instructing and teaching. It also helps me feel a part of this community. I’m looking forward to continuing to volunteer here and will use the lessons I learn here throughout the rest of my life. 

For more information on our Middle School tech and gaming classes  or to volunteer, visit our SONYC Center Based Tween Program page.