Code Spring Hosts Workshop for Kids
Athalia Whitworth, Code Spring
Code Spring hosted a workshop for youth, ages 8-13 and their parents on Saturday, July 14th at the Appalachian Enterprise Center in Boone, North Carolina. The workshop was the second in a summer beta program that introduced computer coding concepts to youth through an interactive games and challenges. Youth met a real-life computer programmer, learned to think like a coder through games, met new friends and ate pizza.
Front-end developer Jordan Estes shared how he got his start learning code and how he brings his professional training in theater and the arts to inform his technical problem-solving. He contrasted the spontaneous mindset of theater with the logical framework of computers. Working in teams, kids experienced this juxtaposition by using both logic and creative thinking to solve the classic river-crossing challenge.
Youth also worked in teams of 2-3 on Lightbot, a free online tool designed for the Hour of Code project. The interactive game introduced youth to instructions that a computer (the bot) can understand, using a visual platform and increasingly complex challenges.
“I started inexperienced and worked my way through. I got to know coding better than before,” said participant Maddie. Zoe, another workshop participant added, “It was fun!”
Code Spring will pilot a monthly code club for kids starting September 15 and continuing the third Saturday of the month. Dates are as follows, October 20 and November 17, February 16, March 16, May 18.
The initiative is inspired by a shared vision to impact the next generation with tools and resources in an increasingly technical world. Workshops are led by professional volunteers and sponsored by Smart Game Systems, Watauga Economic Development, Startup High Country and High Country Local First.