The James Wilson Young Middle School Webmasters Club, led by Library Media Specialist Kelly Noeldechen and high school junior Ryan Yannelli, the student programming coach, participated in the Hour of Code initiative set forth by Computer Science Education Week. This worldwide program gains support from high-profile individuals such as President Obama, Mark Zuckerburg and Ashton Kutcher. Program participants included Apple stores and the Khan Academy.
Students began the session by watching a video that encouraged learning computer programming. The video detailed how students today are competing in a global world, and how some of the most competitive but desirable careers are those in computer science – and the opportunities are only growing. The clip also illustrated how current curricula in many schools do not include computer science, so programs such as Hour of Code are crucial for providing coding opportunities.
After the video, students accessed code.org and browsed through tutorials that explained coding languages. They soon began building code in virtual games and programs such as Scratch, Tynker and Codeacademy. At the end of the session, many students received a virtual certificate congratulating them on their participation.
The Hour of Code was a huge success, and the students look forward to growing the opportunity in the district by participating in this initiative again next year.
Throughout the year, the club is responsible for updating and editing the school website, as well as learning about computer programming, desktop publishing, photo editing and current technological tools.