Практическое руководство

Проведение первого RailsGirls мероприятия

Наша цель - привлечение девушек в индустрию. Дать им в руки инструменты, рассказать о технологии и помочь сделать успешный шаг - разработать свое первое приложение!

Rails Girls бало основанно в конце 2010 года в Хельсинки. Мы никогда не могли подумать, что задуманное, как единоразовое событие, RailsGirls станет мировым движением! Это руководство создано, чтобы помочь тебе организовать мероприятие.

Пожалуйста, свяжись с нами contact@railsgirls.com, если ты хочешь организовать локальное событие. Карту будущих мероприятий можно увидеть по ссылке www.railsgirls.com.

Основные понятия

Rails Girls - некоммерческое мероприятие. Мы не берем плату с участников, также мы не платим тренерам и ораторам. Участники не должны обладать какими-то предварительными знаниями о программировании, и не должно быть никаких возрастных ограничений. Все, что им нужно, это ноутбук и любознательность.

Двухдневное мероприятие включает в себя работу небольшими группами и короткие презентации о программировании, дизайне и вебе. Никаких заумных разговоров и подиумных презентаций - атмосфера должна быть неформальной и рабочей. Чем больше абстрактности вы можете убрать, и добавить сопричастности, тем лучше.

Rails Girls философия

Example Program

Every Rails Girls event starts with an installation-fest where the setup is pre-installed to the girls computers. See railsgirls.com/install for readymade instructions. The installation-fest can include short talks, but the main point is to offer some sparkling wine, get everything set for the next day and the girls to know each other. The timeframe is tentative - you know your audience and what suits them best. We’ve hosted events both during weekend and weekdays. Also, doing two evenings (4PM - 22 PM) might be a more suitable solution for your community needs.

Цели тренинга:

Пятница, вечер: Установка

19:00 - 21:00 Установка и знакомство друг с другом. Подсказка: Хорошо иметь столик с тренерами, куда можно принести “проблемные” компьютеры с неправильными ОС ;).

У некоторых попытки установить нужный проваляться: будьте готовы посадить девушек по парам, не тратьте бесконечное количество времени.

Украсьте место воздушными шариками и постерами. Добавьте вместе веселья playlist на вечер.

Проявите активность, чтобы растопить лёд: поспрашивайте девушек, почему они решили посетить это мероприятие, после чего попросите описать web-приложение ихней мечты.

21 -> Тренерский ужин (WTF 0_o) Просмотрите приложение вместе с тренерами во время ужина.

Суббота: тренинг

09:00 - 10:00 Регистрация и кофе Hint Reserve enough time for people to mingle and to solve any problems there might be with installations. Give out workbooks, collect acronyms for the Bento exercise.

10:00 - 10:10 Welcoming words Hint Mention sponsors, show what we’ll build, tell what programming is.

10:30 - 11:00 UX workshop

11:00 - 11:30 Introduction to programming Hint Ask one of the coaches to do this. Explain why learning Ruby basics is important even though they’ll be using Rails.

Themes to cover:

Show & tell with tryruby.org, first three-four exercises all together.

11:30 - 13:00 Workshop time Going (slowly!) through the curriculum at railsgirls.com/app. Stop to explain what you’re doing and what the different concepts mean.

Try to aim for simple explanations even with the cost of accuracy. You don’t need to talk about all underlying concepts. Just try to answer questions when they arise, or move on if they’re too hard or out of scope. You are not here to teach perfect coding skills but to show how to get stuff done. One has to learn how to build web apps before learning how to do it well.

Concepts to cover:

Tips: Coaches are people too. They are doing this for the first time too. Teaching might be hard and intimidating, so remember to be available to help coaches or groups with difficult situations or just provide support and encouragement.

13:00 - 14:00 Lunch

14:00 - 14:30 Bentobox exercise Putting technical jargon into a context with a conceptual model called Bentobox.

Two exercises: 1) Going through the 10 technical concepts with the physical Bentobox boards. 2) Going through the words the girls have themselves submitted with the coaches.

14:30 - 18:00 Workshop time.

Time to continue working on the applications. Monitor the situation: when it seems like people have a hard time concentrating, have the coaches or other speakers give quick lightning talks.

Example topics for lighting talks:

Once everyone has finished their app, there is time to extend the application by modifying the CSS, implementing commenting systems etc. Allow enough time for experimentation.

19:00 After party Hint: Invite everyone, also the local developers, boys, those who weren’t accepted, to join!

Fork this project on GitHub, add yourself, and send us a pull request.


Promotion of Rails Girls

Every Rails Girls workshop will get a custom website at railsgirls.com/city where the information is collected and then stored. For past cities, see railsgirls.com/events

While the event is underway, remember to take pictures, collect tweets and ask questions of the participants. We love to write blog posts about the speaker and participant experiences. A list of the coaches is also required.

How to find local developers?

How to find participants?

How to get press?

One of the big aims of Rails Girls is to make it more mainstream for girls to build the web. That’s why we like to engage the local press and highlight the participants and their enthusiasm. We’d be happy to help prepare a press-release for the media. Check out railsgirls.com/press for more.


Rails Girls talks to a demographic that might be hard to reach other ways: women who have an interest in technology, who are possible users, employees or partners of the sponsoring company.

We are looking for sponsors who are active participants in the local technology scene, whether it’s a startup or a big corporation, a non-profit or a government organization.

Also non-traditional technology companies can be approached: kids stores, universities, women’s magazines, beverage brands etc. They all should however have some affiliation or interest in technology.

Rails Girls should always be kept non-profit: if there’s money left, it should be used to support the future activities of the attendees. Don’t forget that you don’t need that much funding and even a two-person startup could be very willing to chip in.

Example letter for sponsors

Dear xxx,

We are organizing a Rails Girls programming workshop in (insert city) on (insert dates).

Rails Girls is a two-day non-profit event for women and girls to give them a great first experience in software craftmanship. We aim to give the tools to understand technology along with the community and inspiration to get started.

Rails Girls is not just about programming, it’s about building things. During the workshop, we’ll build an application and also have inspiring lightning talks and exercises.

For a closer look, please see www.railsgirls.com for past events and coverage.Here’s also a short video on the Berlin event held in April 2012: http://vimeo.com/40852182

We are now looking for sponsors to help us realize this all. We’d love to have your support!

Yours, name

How much does it cost?

The costs below are estimated for 30 participants, 10 coaches - but they may vary a lot. It’s easiest to try to get a local sponsor to pay the bills directly or partner with someone who has a set account to handle money. These calculations are done in Finland, in €, where food & alcohol is very expensive, but spaces are often free. All in all you should be able to organise an event easily for a little over a thousand euros.

What do sponsors get?

Don’t give out the participant info, but sponsors are free to hang out at the event and be sure to include a short message to the sponsor in a thank-you note. Sponsor swag may be included in the goodie bag to an extent, but it should be something tasteful, not trashy and related to girls.


Who can organise a Rails Girls workshop?

Anyone. What we look for is a group of people dedicated in making this a stellar first experience in the world of web making for girls. What we hope to see is some (not all) of the following:

Start by filling out railsgirls.com/inyourcity and someone from our team will be in contact

What kind of venue is needed?

We recommend choosing a venue with a built-in infrastructure for around 30-50 persons. For a programming event, this means:

Ask where local developer meetings are usually hosted. Often co-working spaces are also willing to negotiate deals to gain some visibility among new people.

What is expected from the coaches?

Rails Girls events are organized around small groups, ideally maximum of 4-5 persons per one coach. The coaches don’t need to be hardcore experts on Rails - basic knowledge and willingness to explain trumps expertise. We are looking for people who like answering questions and can keep an upbeat and positive atmosphere through a period of 8 hours!

You can get to know the curriculum by checking out railsgirls.com/app. There is also always a pre-event coach dinner where we’ll go through some pedagogical suggestions and check everyone knows what is happening. Avoid jargon, tie examples to what your doing, encourage asking questions. The installation instructions can be found at railsgirls.com/install. We also understand that coaches are human and that for most of the people this is the first time teaching something. Worry not - the girls have always been really happy with whatever they learn and just the chance to ask questions is enough.

We hope the coaches are ok with having their name and twitter-id/github/some mean of contact on railsgirls.com so the girls always have a local face to answer their questions.

In addition, we encourage coaches to come up with additional exercises for the group. After completing the ideation app many girls will want to try tweaking the look & feel of the site, implementing commenting, Facebook sharing, pushing the app to Heroku, etc.

Sample letter for potential coaches

“Dear community member,

We wish to invite you to take part in the Rails Girls event on (insert date). The event is aimed for girls and women with no previous programming experience, but a lot of passion to building things. Rails Girls is an international non-profit, volunteer-based workshop. We’ve had events in Shanghai, Berlin, Helsinki, and Singapore. We expect to receive around a 100 applications.

In addition to giving a safe and fun first experience to coding for the girls we want to engage them with local developers, open source, and the startup scene. We’ve attached some information on what coaching requires in practice. In addition, we have room for small lightning talks on technical subjects. If you have something you’d like to speak about, let us know.

For more information about the non-profit event, check railsgirls.com or guides.railsgirls.com

(You can also include the chapter “What is expected from the coaches” to the mail)”

What materials do I get?

Each Rails Girls event gets a specific webpage.

In addition we’ll help you out with the goodie bags, poster templates, workbooks and other swag like stickers, reflectors and so forward. All of the materials can be found on this site. You can also ask the sponsors to include some sponsor materials if they wish. We are always looking for creative outlets for the Rails Girls brand, if you have ideas, let us know!

So far we’ve had

How do I choose attendees?

In the form we ask only two questions: do you have any previous background in coding and why would you be a good participant for Rails Girls

Rails Girls is intended for anyone and we want to keep it flexible enough for learners any age. However, make clear to the attendees what to expect: Rails Girls won’t make anyone into a coder, so people looking for i.e career change will be disappointed. On the other hand we like people with very diverse backgrounds and loads of enthusiasm.

After selecting participants we generally split them into three groups:

  1. people with no previous programming experience
  2. people with some front-end experience (HTML, CSS, Javascript) and
  3. people with a little experience in programming or a background in computer sciences. You can use the different name-tags for each group if you want to (rubies, foxes, octocats, rails..)
Пример письма-приглашения

Тема письма: Rails Girls воркшоп - добро пожаловать!

Дорогой участник,

Поздравляем! Мы счастливы пригласить тебя на Rails Girls воркшоп в (городе). Мы очень надеемся, что на этом семинаре ты получишь свой первый опыт создания веб-приложений на Ruby on Rails.

Что дальше?

Регистрация на мероприятие (вставить время) (вставить дату).

(Дата преведения установочной вечеринки) в (время начала) начинается вечеринка по установке необходимого ПО - так что захвати свой ноутбук с собой! Еще мы рекомендуем тебе попробовать установить Rails самостоятельно по инструкции на http://rgua.github.com/install/.

Мероприятие будет проходить по адресу (вставить адрес). Карту проезда мы можешь посмотреть (<вставить ссылку на карту или инструкцию>).

Повторная регистрация во второй день с (вставить время).

А (вставить дату второго дня) мы окунемся в разработку. Работа будет проходить в небольших группах по 4-6 человек. Участники группы будут иметь такой же уровень знаний, как и ты. Все мы будем разрабатывать простое приложение (типа Pinterest). Второй день закончится около (вставить время). После этого возможно будет небольшая афтерпати, где ты сможешь свободно пообщаться о полученных знаниях с другими участниками и тренерами.

У нас огромный список людей, которые хотят попасть на воркшоп. Поэтому пожалуйста, подтверди свое участие письмом как можно скорее!

Если у тебя есть какие-то вопросы, не стесняйся спрашивать!

С уважением,


Пример письма с отказом

Тема письма: Rails Girls - ты в списке ожидающих

Дорогой претендент,

К сожадению мы не можем пригласить тебя на мероприятие в этот раз. Желая персонально помочь каждому участнику, мы можем принять только часть заявок. Но мы занесли тебя в список ожидающих, и если освободиться место, мы обязательно тебе сообщим!

Скорее всего мы будем еще организовывать мероприятия в твоем городе. Следи за твиттером twitter.com/railsgirls или нашей фейсбук-страничкой facebook.com/railsgirls.

С уважением,


Sample thank you letter for participants

Dear Rails Girls,

Thank you for taking part in the Rails Girls event. We truly felt lucky to have such a talented & enthusiastic crowd of people with us and hope many of you will continue working with Rails in the future - you have the tools, now build something cool!

(Say a few words about the sponsors and coaches - thank you for the community)

Three things we want to share:

Workshop Materials (Almost all) materials can be found in the guides section at http://guides.railsgirls.com. You can find presentations, materials and instructions from the workshop. If you took pictures or blogged about the event - let us know! We’ll be publishing regularly on blog.railsgirls.com

Make Rails Girls better - give us feedback! We want to hear from you! Give us feedback about the workshop or how we can make the event better – it’s really quick, and it’ll help us improve our workshop at railsgirls.com/feedback

Keep on coding! We realize there was quite a lot of stuff in todays lecture and for most of you it all felt a little overwhelming. We strongly recommend trying out Rails for Zombies exercise at http://www.codeschool.com/ latest by next weekend, it’ll refreshen all you’ve learned so far and teach you some more.

Two things to keep you going: - (Insert here a couple of community events that the participants should take part in)

There was a LOT of interest in doing follow-up events. If you have ideas for this or want to volunteer for the organizing team, let us know and sign up for the group e-mailing list at http://groups.google.com/group/rails-girls-team!

And thats all for now, Your Rails Girls team

What happens after the event?

Inviting real developers to coach is Rails Girls sessions not only gives the participants a chance for hands-on education, but also makes the barrier to enter the technology world lower. How to keep the girls coding?


This is a small checklist for your event. Rails Girls can be thrown together in a matter of weeks, but to truly have time to make a good event, prepare at least two months. Not all of these steps are of course mandatory and they are here just to help you remember.

Before the event:

During the event

After the event