The kids at Roberto Clemente’s Coding Camp seemed both nervous and excited. Some of them had never coded before, and when presented with the task of creating their own quiz games, they seemed unsure. The KID Museum Coding Corps team gave some pointers, and soon enough the middle school students were designing their own games and characters with creativity and confidence.
Coding Corps is a new program for high school students that was started with support from the Montgomery County Government. The team, led by KID Museum educators, is trained in both Scratch programming and educational philosophies–specifically in how to teach coding to elementary and middle schoolers. Once they’ve gone through intensive training, they assist KID Museum in a variety of coding programs, from coding jams to coding camps and after-school classes.
“It’s great to be able to see the high school students take ownership in the room,” says Liza Manfred, KID Museum Educator. “I love being able to step back and let them teach. They know what to say and how to ask the right questions, both in front of the room and in their one-on-one interactions.”
At Clemente Middle School’s Coding Camp, Coding Corps member Margot walks around the room, stopping to chat with the students as they work on their quiz games. “The teaching concepts we learned are really useful,” she says. “And I think it’s great for kids to learn coding in a fun way, since coding is so important in a digitized world.” Asked what she’s learned from working with kids, Margot, a high school junior, replies, “Patience.”
Interested in trying out a Coding Jam? You can! We’ll be at the Montgomery County Agricultural Fair on August 15th. And on September 24th, you’ll find the Coding Corps teaching a Jam at KIDfest, KID Museum’s signature festival, celebrating making, creativity, and innovation. See you there!