Hackathons are a great way to build your critical thinking skills and work with your peers on a fun passion project but if you haven’t participated in a hackathon before, it may be intimidating. If HACK to Tomorrow is your first hackathon (or even if it isn’t) here are some tips and tricks to make it fun and successful!

What to Have Handy

  • Your computer (of course)
  • Water (to stay hydrated)
  • Snacks (to keep your brain and body fueled)
  • Pen and Paper (for brainstorming)

Tips for Productivity

Sleep: Make sure to get enough sleep before the hackathon to maximize your productivity

Communication: Be sure to talk to your teammates and update them on all your parts of your project. Ask your team questions and make sure they can get a hold of you throughout the day.

Planning: Work with your team to create a plan of how you will work together. This plan can include a rough timeline of when you want tasks to be finished and who will be doing which tasks.

Timeboxing: Timeboxing is when you work a specific amount of time and then you take a break. An example is for every 25 minutes you work, you take a 5-minute break or for every 60 minutes, you work you take a 15-minute break.

Team Dynamic Tips

Look out for one another: If one of your teammates is getting tired or frustrated, talk to them and encourage them to take a break. Looking out for one another will make sure your team works efficiently together.

Accountability: As a team, you share victories and failures so holding each other accountable is important. You can do this by checking in on your teammates or using an app like RescueTime in “Open Mode” which shares how efficiently each teammate is working by showing their screen time.

Accessibility and Accommodations: It’s important to talk as a team to discuss if there are any accessibility and/or accommodation needs. That way, everyone on the team can be supportive of one another and establish an inclusive environment. If you have any accessibility or accommodations needs that you would like to discuss with Youth Culture, please email [email protected].