Mod 3 Homeroom Groups Guidelines & Prompts

Guidelines

You and a small group of your cohortmates make up your homeroom. You’ll meet on Wednesdays to discuss and collaborate on your professional development.

To start off Mod 3, we recommend revisiting norms with your group. These could include:

  • What communication and feedback looks like within your group
  • How to hold each other accountable
  • If and how you will communicate outside of Wednesday group time. We encourage groups to form Slack channels if they would like!

Skip down to:

Week 1 Prompts & Structure (60 mins)

  1. Revisit norms for how your group wants to work together (10 mins):

    • What was helpful last mod?
    • What do you want to keep doing?
    • What do you want to stop doing?
    • What new ways do you want to collaborate with each other?
  2. This week’s lesson is all about updating your branding materials through revising your resume, creating your Terminal portfolio, and Read through this document on tips for effective personal and project descriptions and discuss as a group (15 mins):

    • How does this information about how to tailor your descriptions to different audiences make you think differently about the descriptions you’ve been writing?
    • What are the main takeaways you’ll keep in mind as you refine your personal and project descriptions moving forward?
    • What is challenging about writing these? How could you help each other to overcome those challenges and make your descriptions even better?
  3. Pick 1 area to focus on today from the document (GitHub project ReadMe, GitHub profiile ReadMe, Terminal About Me summary, or Terminal project description), and using its tips, create an updated version. (20 mins)

  4. Share what you worked on with each other and provide feedback that is specific, actionable, and kind. Make sure to use this feedback to update your materials. (15 mins)

Week 3 Prompts & Structure (60 mins)

  1. Revisit norms (5 mins)
  2. Today we’re going to use your LinkedIn more effectively to network. Start by reviewing your LinkedIn profiles with each other and discuss (10 mins):

    • What stands out about my profile?
    • What do you learn about me from reading my profile?
    • Is there anything that isn’t clear or is missing from my profile currently?
  3. Use your LinkedIn to get started with networking by choosing 1 or more of the following to work on (20-30 mins):

    • Find companies of interest on LinkedIn and start following them.
    • For a company you’re interested in, see who works there and find a developer (or two!) who you could reach out to. Look through their profile first to get a sense of who they are as you tailor your message to them.
    • Look for professional software developer groups you can join to broaden your network.
    • Make updates to your profile as needed.
    • Endorse each other or write recommendations for each other or others in your cohort.
  4. Using what you have learned about networking, discuss (10-15 mins):

    • How can you use LinkedIn to more effectively network with people who work at companies you’re interested in?
    • What next steps can you take with networking before the end of the mod?
    • What challenges do you anticipate about networking? How can you help each other with these challenges?

Week 5 Prompts & Structure (60 mins)

Today’s discussion is focused on the cover letters you should have completed after the week 4 lesson. This peer review activity should be take an hour to complete. Each review should take approximately 25 minutes per person in groups of two. Please adjust the time accordingly for groups of 3.

  • First, revisit norms on how your group wants to work together (5 mins)
  • Next, pair up with another group member for this activity

Before you start:

  1. You each should have a job posting and a cover letter based on the job post.
  2. Provide a review of each other’s cover letter utilizing the checklist below.
  3. Take notes and be prepared to give Kind, and Actionable feedback.
  4. Feel free to take notes on this form for your partner to have for future reference.

Start the Conversation:

  1. The person who wrote the cover letter please share with the other person an overview of your cover letter and what kind of feedback you are mostly looking for.
  2. Share the job posting you used for your cover letter or details about your objective if there is no advertised position.
  3. Your partner(s) will give you feedback by responding to following checklist below to guide their review and feedback.

Cover Letter Checklist (10 min)

  • Introduction: Is the opening paragraph strong? Does it grab the reader’s attention?
  • Body paragraph: Are the middle paragraphs compelling? Do they demonstrate the candidate’s worthiness by focusing on accomplishments and proven performance? Are key words highlighted from the job description?
  • Closing: Is there an assertive call to action in the closing paragraph?
  • Writing Style: Is the letter concise yet persuasive? Is it error-free?
  • Relevancy: Is the letter focused on relevant skills?
  • Accomplishment-Oriented: Does the letter highlight quantifiable accomplishments related to the career goal?
  • Employer-Focused: Does the letter focus on what the candidate can do for the employer, not the other way around?
  • Formatting: Is the letter appropriately formatted as a business letter?

Feedback From Partner(s) (10 min)

  • What tip, strategy or resource can you suggest to be implemented into practice? When providing feedback, make sure it’s kind and actionable.
  • Take the advice that works for you
  • After receiving your review, analyze the feedback and work on the changes that will give your letter the most added impact.

The overall goal of the cover letter is for you to decribe yourself as the right candidate for what they’re looking for.