For the next generation

JavaScript education for a better JavaScript

Pam Selle | @pamasaur

Pam Selle!


I do stuff!


  • Existing education
  • Why we need to
  • How we can

Who's been teaching

Low cost diversity-centered initiatives

  • RailsGirls
  • Railsbridge
  • PyStar
  • Boston Python Workshop

Lessons from Boston Python

Why we need to


[jQuery] I love you but ...

Let's do better.

Put your education in your user group

3 reasons to bring education to your user group

1. Bring in new faces

2. Improve diversity

3. Make JavaScript(ers) better

(totally [possibly] selfish reasons)

Attract sponsors

Do it outside the user group as well

Interns, onboarding, lunchtime courses, etc.

Teaching makes you better and stuff

How we did it

How to edu

  1. Promote within
  2. Advertise!
  3. "Bring a friend"
  4. Mentors & Coaches
  5. Set clear expectations

Promote from within

Advertise with your curriculum

"Bring a friend"

Mentors & Coaches

Charge a little $$
(or don't)

Set clear expectations
(on all sides)


  • 30: Number of students who attended
  • 6: Coaches
  • 100%: Students surveyed who would come to another meeting
  • 64: New members between workshop scheduling and workshop
  • 25% group increase in < 1 month

"What was your favorite part?"

Seeing javascript in action
The difficulty level! ... There are bountiful learning resources for beginners and experts, and it is always the intermediate users who get shafted ... Yes! I learned something I didn't already know!
The ability to ask any of the coaches around the room.
... healthy mix of lecture/hands on.

You can do it too!

Try it yourself!

Free and available on GitHub at


(30 minutes each)

  • Variables and data types
  • Functions, scope, closures, anonymous functions (IIFE)
  • Logic and loops
  • Object literals and DOM, prototypes

How to teach/coach

  • Watch the room
  • Listen more than you talk
  • Give space
  • Embrace your style

You can't do it wrong

(or well, you'll find out quickly)

After the Workshop: The value of momentum

Keep it moving!

  • User group meetings (with talks)
  • Lightning talks
  • Book club
  • Project night
  • Help people talk to each other (list, Twitter, etc.)

Put your education in your user group

Better Community === Better JavaScript


Through education

Thank you

Pam Selle


Philadelphia JavaScript Developers