What we thought of Code Camp after sending our kids

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This post is sponsored by Code Camp

Are you looking for something for your kids to do in the school holidays that doesn’t involve, movie cinemas, shopping centres, theme parks, junk food or your 24th visit to the Museum?  Code camp is a great way for your kids to be spend three days of their holidays learning about a topic that we know will be important for the future but is intimidating for some parents to understand let alone try and explore with their kids.

Coding is one of those buzz-words we here thrown around a lot these days especially in relation to schooling.  While as a teacher I’m not convinced that it’s the be-all and end all of education that it’s made out to be, I do think that it is important for our kids to understand what it is and how it works.  They are, after all, launching headlong into a world in which is saturated with technology all built on some type of code.

Code Camps are a fun and non-intimidating way for kids to be introduced to the world of coding.  In the Summer school holidays of 2016 our girls went to their first 3 day Code Camp held at Clayfield College in Brisbane.  They had an awesome time and it was a fun and constructive way for them to spend some of their school holidays (and bonus!! they weren’t sitting round at home moaning about how they were bored and how boring the holidays were).

The way they were taught coding was through creating their own game.  They built the game bit by bit using an easy to understand coding program and it actually looked like lots of fun.  Whenever I’ve thought about coding I tended to think about and blank screen with a whole lot of letters, numbers, symbols and hash tags.  It was nothing like this, in fact it was quite visual and our girls who are by no means computer gurus were able to complete the task and have lots of fun while doing so.  They were really happy to go back every day of the three day program.  There was a high instructor to student ratio also, so lots of help was available when they needed it.  Also our girls got a cool hat and t-shirt as part of the deal which is always a winner!!

To find a Code Camp near you click here.

code campHere’s some more info from the Code Camp crew themselves about what they have in store for this year:

WORLD’S FIRST EVER 3D CODING PLATFORM FOR KIDS LAUNCHED

For the first time, Australian kids as young as nine years old can now learn to create and code their very own app using a world first 3D coding platform developed by Code Camp.

Code Camp are excited to announce their latest addition to coding programs for children ‘Blast 3D’ where over a 3-day school holiday camp primary school kids can learn to code their very own app in 3D using pure JavaScript.

“We are very excited to be the first company in the world to offer such an innovative program that encourages kids to use their creativity to build apps rather than being consumers of them”, says Code Camp COO Hayley Markham.

Code Camps’ Blast 3D program has been in development for over 12 months by a team of 20 of Australia’s top computer engineers and programmers making it accessible and easy to use for kids aged 9-12yrs old.

“We wanted to make the program as easy to use as possible but also maintain important elements of JavaScript coding language so that the kids are learning important coding skills which are going to help them in the future”, says Chief Technology Office Dan Zwolenski.

After the 3-day Code Camp, students will have their own app to show family and friends and access to Code Camp World, the platform they used to create the app so that they can further their coding skills at home.

11-year-old Gabrielle McHugh was one of the first to trial the new program “It’s awesome, the way the characters can be rotated, the graphics just look so real. I’ve completed two other Code Camps in 2D using block code, and now it’s great to learn how to use line coding in 3D”.

Code Camp’s Hayley Markham is motivated by seeing kids’ ideas come to life and the increasing interest from girls wanting to learn how to code. “Computer engineering is still a male-dominated industry with three out of five computer engineers being men. However, we’ve seen an increase in the number of girls attending our camps, and they’re coming up with some amazing ideas. I’m hoping by starting young we can help to shape the future of girls and coding.” 

Take nine-year-old Sarah Yep who after attending Code Camp developed a beach safety app, helping people to learn about the dangers of swimming at the beach, which has sparked the interest of Surf Life Saving Australia. And year four student Taylah Bates loved coding so much she developed her own app to encourage more girls to take it up. Then there’s Lamar Abualsamh, a 10-year-old coder in grade five at school. Lamar has attended Code Camp for the past three years and has used her Code Camp skills to create a website. After growing more concerned about her father’s health due to smoking, she put together this website designed to encourage her dad to quit smoking.

These winter school holidays, 5,000 primary school aged kids across Australia will be choosing to spend the holidays creating their own apps. Code Camp will be running their 3-day camps in 100 schools in NSW, VIC, SA, WA and ACT.  Kids as young as five years old will learn how to code and build their very own computer game and apps.

 ABOUT CODE CAMP

Founded in 2013, eight kids attended the first Code Camp. Just five years later, Code Camp has had 35,000 kids participate across 200 schools in Australia and is expecting over 5,000 enrolments in these upcoming school holidays alone. Find more information about Code Camp at www.codecamp.com.au

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