Full STEM Help

What you need to participate

For all projects you will need access to a browser on a computer, or tablet to connect to the broadcast episode (webinar).  You can use a smartphone but it may be difficult to see the Scratch Blocks.   It is recommended that you also have a computer to work on. This could be the same computer with two windows open but of course the best option is two screens, one to watch (a computer, or tablet)  and a computer to program on.  

We will be teaching the lessons and building all projects from a Raspberry Pi with the latest release for the Boolean Box but you can follow along on most any computer for many of the projects.

To watch the Episode:  The best option is a windows, Mac, or Chromebook computer connected to WiFi to watch the episode on.  You can also use a tablet to watch the episode.   Use this computer to connect to register and join the episode.   

To code and Build: We recommend using your Boolean Box to code, build, invent and animate on but it is not required for most of the projects.  You can do many of the projects on a Windows computer, a Mac or a Chromebook. The exception are the Physical Computing projects where we will build circuits, you will need a Raspberry PI to participate in those projects.

To Participate in the Scratch Projects (Monday and Friday): Open Scratch on your Boolean Box Raspberry Pi or open the web version on any computer.  Follow the link for more details. 

To Participate in the Python Projects (Wednesdays): To code in Python you need to install Python and Install Thonny.  If you have a Raspberry Pi you should be set, check to see that Python 3 and Thonny are under the programming menu.  For a Mac or Windows or Chromebook computer for the install instructions here: Install Python    and Install Thonny

Joining an Episode

To join an episode you need to register by following the link on the Booleangirl.org/Full-STEM-Ahead page.

After you register you will receive and e-mail.  Click the "Join Webinar" link to join the Episode.

If you join too early the join page will look like this.  Standby, we usually open the episode 10 minutes early.

If the Episode is ready to start, the get start page looks like this.  There is a popup "Open GoToOpener.app.  You must click Open GoToOperner.app to join the episode.

As you connect there are a couple of PopUps.  Like this One.

When the connection process finishes.  Your screen will show a display window and have a toolbar to the right.


A voice should say the webinar is starting.

Starting Scratch

Starting Scratch on Windows, Mac, or other computer

Many projects we do, especially on Mondays and Fridays will be done in Scratch.  Scratch is a block based coding languaged developed by MIT to teach kids to code.

Go to http://Scratch.mit.edu to open Scratch. 

Click Create to ge to to the application

Starting Scratch on a Boolean Box - Raspberry Pi

The Scratch icon should be on the desktop.  Click it to start.

Scratch will open so you can start coding

Install Python

For Windows:
1. Go to:

2. Click Download Python x.x.x (the yellow button) to get the latest version.

3. This will download the software onto your computer.  Look for the downloaded file in the task bar at the bottom of your screen or in the "Downloads" folder in Windows Explorer.  It will end with ".exe".  Double-click the downloaded file to run the installation.

4.  Click "Install Now".  You may need to say "Yes" when asked if you want to allow the application to make changes to your computer.  Follow the prompts to install with the default settings. You don't need a custom installation.

It will take a few minutes.

5. Then you'll see something like:

6.  Click "Close".  Your Python installation is complete.  Now follow the directions below to install Thonny.

For Mac:
1. Go to:

2. Click Download Python x.x.x to get the latest version

3. Follow the prompts to install with the default settings. You don't need a custom installation.

It will take a few minutes.

4. Then you'll see something like:

Install Thonny

Now you need to install Thonny, a tool we use for writing code in Python.  (Remember that Python is the language we're coding in, and Thonny is the place where we write the code.  It's similar to the idea that French is spoken in France.)
2.  On the top right, you'll see links to install Thonny.  Click Windows if you have a Windows computer, Mac if you have a Mac, etc.
3.  You'll see a file with a name that ends in ".exe" download to your computer.
4.  Double-click it to run it.  (You may get a message warning you that this is an unrecognized app and could pose a risk to your computer.  Click "Run anyway").
5.  Click "Next" through the installation process and accept the default settings.
6. Click "Finish" to complete the installation.
7.  Go to your desktop, find the Thonny icon and double-click to run it.  You may see a message like this: