Coding is sometimes called the new literacy, or the new second language, but to most of the kids attending KID Museum’s free Coding Jams, it’s just plain fun.
At the Coding Jams, which are taking place at libraries across Montgomery County, kids use Scratch programming to create simple maze games — they program how their character moves, what happens when they win or lose, and a variety of other features.
KID Museum educator Amanda Puerto Thorne, who’s leading the coding sessions, explains how this appeals to kids of all interests: “Scratch offers different entry points. For example, if someone is into art, they can spend more time making their characters beautiful. Other kids are more technical, and spend more time on programming.”
Wherever the interest lies, learning to code has been shown to improve problem-solving skills, giving kids confidence in their abilities, and the confidence to persevere in the face of obstacles. It’s also a unique outlet for building creativity.
“It’s great for kids to learn that you can use computers as a creative tool,” says Amanda. “And coding also helps kids implicitly in all subjects, especially math and literacy.”
KID Museum’s Coding Corps, a group of high schoolers who’ve been trained in coding and coding instruction for younger students, are assisting Amanda at this week’s Coding Jams. Coding Corps was created as a way to provide coding to more elementary and middle school kids, while providing a learning continuum for high schoolers.
If you missed us this time, stay tuned for more free coding opportunities with KID Museum throughout the year!