This is a wonderful project: Code Club – with a mission to get kids coding in schools, and an overall vision to ‘create a nationwide after school coding club for children aged 10 – 11’. Sounds wonderful. I did my first coding aged about 10 when I wrote a small program in Basic for a school project. The program was a quiz which asked you questions about the history of the police force in the UK. High level stuff.
But it was awesome. Get a question right and it played a happy tune. Get one wrong and a police siren sounded. Look out!
Then, in secondary school, I took Computer Studies for a couple of years, and all the joy was sucked out of me with a big sucky thing. It sucked. It had no relevance to anything – I could see very few practical applications in learning the history of computers (okay, it might be interesting to me now – but to a 14 year old?). But the coding thing was great – write a program, see the results, and people could use it – play on it, learn from it, be quietly impressed by it. Although I preferred it when they were loudly impressed.
Anyway, this is what Code Club want to instil, I believe: that sense of joy and wonder about making a machine do your bidding.
You can sign up as someone who wants to help with the curriculum, or as someone who’d like to run a program in your school, to donate a little cash or just to express your interest and say ‘Cool!’
This is people who are trying to teach our kids stuff off of their own back. It’s worth a re-tweet or share.