When I arrived here in Monticello, I started looking for the coding/programming community. And found out there isn’t one!
So, I’ve decided to cultivate one if I can. Right now, I’m doing that in two ways: 1) By teaching students to code and 2) By encouraging the whole community to consider the benefits of a tech-friendly environment.
In the teaching aspect, I was fortunate to meet with Mona Lewis who started her Education Services business just as I arrived. She loved the idea of having a Coding Class at her offices so I set one up. It was a 5-week class and I had four students. It went well and one of those students attended my FIRST “Saturday Sessions” class on September 10th.
The photo above is an early version of my classroom on the 2nd floor of the business offices in the ‘Old Library.’ My niece is ready to learn! In a couple more years, I’ll get her a robot to program.
What is Code?
I hear this question a lot, and it’s a good one.
In simplest terms code is instructions for computer programs, or ‘machine language.’ I’m a ‘front-end developer,’ which means my code looks like this:
<h1>This sentence is the Page Title</h1>
And tells your computer browser to do this:
"Browser, make this sentence big and bold for humans,
and tell Google search robots it's the page title."
Which results in you seeing something like this in your browser:
That’s just one line of code. Developers and Programmers learn how to write hundreds and thousands of lines to get browsers, robots, software, databases and more to do something useful.
During the first, 5-week class I did with Mona, I learned that students become so busy during that school year that Saturdays might be the only day they could add another extra-curricula activity. So I’ve started a series of classes called “Saturday Sessions.” Two Saturdays a month I’ll teach a new topic. The first session of each month is the Intro session that everyone must attend as a per-requisite for any of the others.
The kinds of students who might like coding are often the quiet types, those who just don’t seem to ‘fit in’ with the outgoing, sports and partying crowd. If you know anyone like that, encourage them to join these classes. Learn more here: http://clgoldenwebcode.com/learning/.
NEXT TIME: Part Two, The Surprising Benefits to the Whole Community When Kids Learn to Code.