Girl Scouts Class

Girl Scouts’ Digital Media Course Materials

So you might remember this past October I started teaching a weekly digital media course to middle-school aged Girl Scout troop using Gimp and Inkscape on Fedora live USB sticks. We held 2-hour sessions in a community center computer lab on Friday nights, assisted by volunteer teaching assistants and Kim who was the Girl Scouts’ class facilitator. I wasn’t really as good about blogging the class as I hoped to be – I wanted to blog each session, but was a bit over-ambitious about being able to do that during the holiday season (plus, the classes were Friday nights so there wasn’t really any time after class to take care of it.)

That being said, the class ended right before Christmas. Over the course of the class, I developed various lesson booklets based on the girls’ progress and interests. Some of the material took two class sessions to cover, so some weeks we didn’t have fresh material; the material on holiday cards and journals was created after three of the girls asked if we could do a class on how to do those things. The final two classes focused on creating T-shirt designs for T-shirts the students could keep – they could select a design they had done earlier in the class and format it for a shirt, or create a completely new design. I sent those to EmbroidMe Chelmsford last week and I’ll be picking them up likely sometime in the next couple of weeks to distribute to the girls.

I’ll be giving a talk about how the class went at FUDCon Tempe in hopes of inspiring and preparing other folks who have thought about volunteering for similar projects. Since I’m in the process of finishing my slides for that talk, I thought it would be useful to present all of the materials developed for the course here.

The Materials

Please feel free to modify and/or distribute these materials under a Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 license! (Attribution to Máirín Duffy and Red Hat, Inc. appreciated.)

Fun with Photos, Part 1

  • Download Fun With Photos Part 1 PDF(10 page, 2.5 MB PDF)
  • Question of the Day: If you could visit anywhere in the world (or even in space!), where would you
    want to go?
  • Project: Use Gimp’s layer masks to compose a photo of yourself at your dream destination.

Fun with Photos, Part 2

  • Download Fun With Photos Part 2 PDF (2 page document that folds into a 4-page booklet. Please print duplex. 2.4 MB PDF)
  • Question of the Day: If a Hollywood makeup artist offered to do your look for Halloween, what face paint, makeup, and/or hair dye would youask for?
  • Project: Combine Gimp’s layer masks and blending modes to create virtual Halloween makeup on a photo of yourself.

Creating A Personal Logo

  • Download Creating A Personal Logo PDF (2 page document that folds into a 4-page booklet. Please print duplex. 1.7 MB PDF)
  • Question of the Day: If you were a solo musical artist, what kind of style would your brand have? Would it be fun? Serious? Dark? Happy and bright? Retro? Futuristic? Tropical? Urban? Think about it!
  • Project: Using Inkscape, choose a font, colors, and effects to create your own personal logo.

Your First Album Cover

  • Download Your First Album Cover PDF (2 page document that folds into a 3-page booklet. Please print duplex. 629 KB PDF)
  • Question of the Day: If you could do an album with any musician today, who would it be? What would your album title be, and what kind of music would you create?
  • Project: Using Inkscape and your personal logo, create a album cover for a musical collaboration between you and your favorite artist(s). You may use Gimp to create a photo of you together with your selected artist(s).

Cards and Journals

  • Download Cards and Journals PDF (2 page document that folds into a 4-page booklet. Please print duplex. 629 KB PDF)
  • Question of the Day: What are your favorite types of holiday greeting cards?
  • Project: Using Inkscape and the Open Clip Art Library feature built into Inkscape, create a holiday card or a personal print-out journal.

Using These Materials

Again, please feel free to modify and/or distribute these materials under a Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 license! (Attribution to Máirín Duffy and Red Hat, Inc. appreciated.) All of the sources for these course materials are available here: materials/sources As a note, the first course packet was created using All of the others were created using Inkscape.

If you would like information on how to create the live USB sticks used in this course, I wrote up a HOWTO on the LibrePlanet wiki.


Shout-out to the FSF’s Womens’ Caucus for the project idea, organization, and assistance; teaching assistant volunteers Martin Owens, Asheesh Laroia, and Deb Nicholson; Rachael Tepperman and Kim Schroff from the Girl Scouts of Eastern Massachusetts for making the class possible; and most especially Marina Zhurakhinskaya for going above and beyond in helping instruct the class and assisting the girls and rallying volunteers.

Course Materials

This course is sponsored by:

Red Hat, Inc.
The Girl Scouts of Eastern Massachusetts

About Máirín Duffy

Máirín is a principal interaction designer at Red Hat. She is passionate about software freedom and free & open source tools, particularly in the creative domain: her favorite application is Inkscape. You can read more from Máirín on her blog at


5 thoughts on “Girl Scouts’ Digital Media Course Materials

  1. Thanks for sharing this, Mo, and putting it under a proper license to let anyone working on it. Please correct me if i miss something, but i think this is a whole step up beyond that old class materials about Inkscape. I’m talking about the license, on those i never found the CC license, so i was unable to work on it and invite others to join. I never, never work on anything without open-licenses, and this is why i choose Fedora Project over other projects.

    I’ll work on it as soon as possible, through a git repository on fedorapeople, i’ll notify you by mail and😀

    Best regards.

    Posted by Jesús Franco | January 26, 2011, 5:38 pm
    • Hey Jesús! The previous Inkscape class I put together is also licensed CC-BY-SA 3.0. This is the official release of the materials: You’ll find a license statement right before the material list: “Here’s all our materials from the class! Please feel free to modify and/or distribute these materials under a CC-BY-SA 3.0 license!”

      Please, if you ever see me release something like this without a CC license, call me on it, because it’s always my intention when first developing the materials to make sure they can be CC-licensed.

      Posted by mairin | January 26, 2011, 5:49 pm
  2. Posting this to

    If you have other courses/OER you’ve done, or would like to share, just let me know so I can list them. Better yet, you can sign up for an account at to list them yourself. I’m also going to add your blog to our planet and aggregator in the near future. We need to get you out to RIT at some point (after FUDCon and PYCon) to speak to our students and faculty.

    Please just keep on doing what you do, because you are doing it right.

    Posted by RemyD | January 26, 2011, 9:24 pm


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