Raspberry Pi, Pumpkins and Python

RPi.GPIO and GPIO Zero…

What does the above mean? No idea, but I do know that I had the chance to sit in on my first project block (extended class time) to try and learn some of the Computer Programming language our students are studying here at White Mountain. Our Director of IT, Nathan Carlson, invited me to check out what his students were working on in his class.

The assignment: In the spirit of Halloween, they were tasked with lighting up pumpkins they had carved, with LED lights. In order to do this, they needed to place a Raspberry Pi (And unfortunately, I do mean pi, NOT pie) into the pumpkin and program the electronics using Python. Although I cannot speak to the calculations used, it sounded intense.

Students, in groups, were hard at work trying to figure out the specific computation that would solve this perplexing pumpkin riddle. They barely noticed when I walked in the room! Pumpkins, LED lights and breadboards the students had soldered together were strewn across tables. By the end of the project block, two groups were racing each other to see who would be able to light up their pumpkin first. In the end, junior Winston Caldwell and senior Aaron Weed, took home the prize.

And I can say with much pride that I now know what a Raspberry Pi is!

Check out our Course Guide to see other STEM offerings here at White Mountain.

By: Sarah Wilfred, Director of Communications

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