Category Archives: Skills

The Coding Lessons That Go Beyond Computer Skills

For many people, how there is even a debate still going on the validity of coding in the classroom is mind boggling. Yet, that debate continues to rage on throughout the country. Consider a recent article for the Lancaster Online titled “What do kids learn from coding? Much more than just computer skills, educators say.”

Kara Newhouse of Lancaster Online writes, “Third-graders at Pequea Elementary School in Penn Manor can’t quite explain how computer coding is used in the real world, but they do know this: it’s a lot of fun. ‘I like coding because you get to play games, but it makes you think and stuff,’ said 8-year-old Kennedy Dings. Last Thursday, Kennedy and her classmates participated in Hour of Code, a global campaign in which children try software programming for one hour anytime during Computer Science Education Week. The event was launched in 2013 by Code.org, a Seattle-based nonprofit dedicated to expanding participation in computer science. During the first year, only a few Lancaster County schools and organizations joined in the Hour of Code. This year, at least 10 local districts and private schools participated. Kennedy and her Pequea classmates, who have been learning coding all year, served as ‘tech experts’ for older and younger students at Hambright Elementary during Hour of Code. (Pequea’s third-grade classrooms are located at Hambright this year because of school renovations.) On Thursday they introduced fifth-graders to coding with online and offline games. In the online games, students drag and drop instructions — ‘lines of code’ — into a sequence to make a character perform a task, such as navigating a maze. The instructions are in plain language, such as ‘turn right’ or ‘jump,’ but the principles are the same as for building computer programs. In a board game called Robot Turtles, players get a stack of cards with directions such as ‘move forward’ or ‘blast through the wall.’ They take turns picking choosing cards to create their code.”

When it comes to customized coding education, your best bet is CodeRev Kids. At CodeRev Kids, our lessons focus on computational thinking, which encompasses a wide variety of programming languages and concepts.

Our lessons build upon one another and we adjust starting points to each student’s level of expertise. Thus, the entire curriculum is customized. We are known for saying we are the most educational tech camp out there, but we also keep the focus on having fun. As a result, students stay engaged while learning to blend creativity with technology.

Sign up for one of our winter camps today!

Taking on the Coding Skills Gap

The United States has a major problem when it comes to the coding skills gap. We have a need for more people with coding capabilities but many college graduates are not leaving school with these skills. Consider a recent article for Bloomberg Business titled “Are You Wasting Your Money at Coding Boot Camp?

Sarah Grant of Bloomberg Business writes, “Fixing the gap between the skills that students graduate college with and the ones they need for a good job has been O’Donnell’s battle since he was Colorado’s secretary of higher education, from 2004 to 2006. In that role, he privatized the state’s student loan servicing business. ‘I was constantly getting complaints that there weren’t enough STEM grads,’ he said. ‘There wasn’t a lack of college grads; it was that the graduates didn’t have the critical skills employers needed.’ The rise of boot camps has been one answer to that problem. The pitch: Learn tech-related skills such as mobile development, Web design, and coding for a fraction of the time and expense it would take to get a Master’s degree. Boot camps last from 10 to 12 weeks and charge about $11,000. Starting salaries for boot camp graduates, said O’Donnell, can range from $70,000 to $100,000. There are 67 full-time boot camps in around 51 U.S. and Canadian cities, according to boot camp review site Course Report, which estimates that by the end of this year, the market will have grown 138 percent from last year. Not all these programs live up to the promise of all-but-guaranteed jobs with great salaries, however. And with no formal accrediting system in place, prospective students have little data with which to compare them. What’s more, lenders can’t determine how much a program will help or hurt student creditworthiness. Some programs don’t even track graduates’ outcomes, said O’Donnell. ‘If a program doesn’t even have the processes in place to know what their numbers are, it’s an indication that the program isn’t as competitive,’ he said.”

For those who really want to get ahead of the curve and set themselves up for lucrative coding-related careers, it starts early. When it comes to youth coding education, your best bet is CodeRev Kids.

At CodeRev Kids, we offer a customized coding education that focuses on computational thinking, which encompasses a wide variety of programming concepts and languages. Our lessons build upon one another and we adjust starting points to each student’s level of expertise. Thus, the entire curriculum is customized. Even though we are known for saying we are the most educational tech camp out there, we also keep the focus on having fun. As a result, students stay engaged while learning to blend creativity with technology.

Sign up for one of our classes today!

How Coding Can Kill Two Birds With One Stone

There are more coding jobs than there are people to fill them. This provides opportunities for women and minorities who have been systematically denied chances in other industries. Consider a recent article for the Atlanta Black Star titled “Study: Coding Boot Camps Bring More Women, Minorities into Tech.”

According to the author of the article, “As technology increasingly becomes a vital part of our lives, diversity in tech will continue be a major issue.According to a study by New York startup Course Report, coding boot camps like Black Girls Code and Code for Progress are filling the diversity gap at a quicker rate than the diversity initiatives of tech giants. The report revealed that 36 percent of the attendees at coding camps are women. Course Report co-founder, Liz Eggleston, said that may be a result of the tech industry’s on-going diversity movement. ‘The market demand is there,’ Eggleston said. ‘Tech companies want to get closer to a 50-50 split, so they’re demanding more female applicants.’ The report findings suggests that companies like Twitter,who announced months prior that they intended to add more women to their work force, should consider attending the coding camps to begin their recruitment process.”

UALR Public Radio also explores the importance of coding, especially for young people, in a recent article titled “Governor’s Radio Address: Coding In The Classroom.” The author of the article writes, “Teachers like Gerri McCann are our schools’ secret weapons. As a high school French teacher from the Manila Public School District, Ms. McCann’s first impression of computer coding was that it was like ‘learning another foreign language.’ But she realized its importance and dived right in. By the end of her training, she was confident enough to add teaching Computer Science to her other subjects, including French, English and Literacy Ready classes. Now Ms. McCann can offer her students even more opportunities to succeed beyond high school. Learning the ‘foreign language’ of coding was challenging, even for someone who began her career teaching French. But Ms. McCann understood the value of coding and earned a master’s degree in Information Systems. Why would she do that? To better prepare her students for a technologically driven world — a world in which computers touch everything.”

When it comes to providing youth with a customized coding education, we’ve got you covered at CodeRev Kids. At CodeRev Kids, our lessons focus on computational thinking, which encompasses a wide range of programming languages and concepts.

Our lessons build upon one another and we adjust starting points to each student’s level of expertise. Thus, the entire curriculum is customized. We are known for saying we are the most educational tech camp out there but we also keep the focus on having fun. As a result, students stay engaged while learning to blend creativity with technology.

Sign up for one of our fall classes today!

Check Out the Mobile Browser Two Brothers Made!

Coding offers many solutions to problems throughout the globe. Consider a recent article for Pulse titled “Nigerian brothers build mobile Web Browser out of ‘boredom.’

Folarin Okunola of Pulse writes, “Anesi and Osine Ikhianosime, 13 and 15 years old respectively, are students of Greensprings school, Anthony Campus, Lagos, and they developed an Android based web browser called Crocodile Browser Lite sometime last year. As a matter of fact, these teenagers’ creation is actually on the Google Play Store. Speaking to TechCabal.com, Osine, 13, said he writes the code together with his brother, for their creations and his brother also designs the UI. At a closer look, these genius brothers are just like every other teenage boy but not quite at the same time. Osine likes to play soccer, but also takes coding as a hobby – which is not something every 13 year old boy does. His interest in computers began at the tender age of 7, the same age which he and his brother –who was 9 at the time (born June1, 1999), decided to start a company of their own. Inspired byMicrosoft’s ‘Windows’ platform, they initially named their new company ‘Doors’, but later changed the name to ‘BluDoors’ when they found out that the initial name had been taken. The two brothers decided to learn to code at ages 12 and 14 respectively. ‘I learnt to code by myself. I started in 2013, I used sites sites like Code Academy, Code Avengers and books like ‘Android for Game Development’ and ‘Games for Dummies’,’ said Anesi. According to both brothers, they started developing an Android based web browser, which they named Crocodile Browser Lite, about a year ago, out of boredom. Their strong interest in technology, coupled with their desire to learn, informed the decision to create a functional, fast browser for low end feature phones because ‘We were fed up with Google Chrome’, according to them.”

There are few better ways to cultivate young coding minds than with customized coding education. This is what we specialize in at CodeRev Kids.

At CodeRev Kids, our lessons emphasize computational thinking, which encompasses a wide range of programming languages and concepts. These lessons build upon one another and we adjust starting points to each student’s level of expertise. We are known for saying we are the most educational tech camp out there, but we also keep the focus on having fun. As a result, students stay engaged while learning to blend creativity with technology.

Sign up for one of our fall classes today!

Using Coding to Combat Piracy and Unlock the Secrets of the BMW Electric Car

Many people are turning to coding to find the solutions to societal problems. If you want to understand how important coding is becoming, consider a recent article for the Guardian titled “Musicians back coding solution to win fair deal for artists.”

Vanessa Thorpe of the Guardian writes, “After more than a year of campaigning under the banner Free At What Cost?, the musician, who was nominated for an Ivor Novello Award for her film score for Skin in 2010 and who writes music for many television shows, including The Only Way is Essex, has built up a growing movement on both sides of the Atlantic to push for a solution: a coding device for all, that would label and protect creative material before it is viewed. She believes deploying a technical protection on a new file to charge the online audience a small amount each time they click offers a practical solution. Last week the artist Imogen Heap put forward her plan for recording artists to use the technology behind bitcoin, the internet currency, to solve the problem. Muddiman and the Free At What Cost? movement believe they are closer to an answer. Their system would allow artists and creators to make a small amount of money, sent direct to their accounts, when their work is viewed. In an age when most professional artists and writers struggle to make money, Muddiman believes this would provide a regular income, securing a supply of content in the future.”

BMW enthusiasts also have reasons to invest in coding. Popular Science reports on this in a recent article titled “IN BMW ELECTRIC CAR, SOFTWARE ‘CODING’ UNLOCKS HIDDEN FEATURES OWNERS WANT.” John Voelcker of Popular Science writes, “At least some are choosing to follow instructions posted online and in BMW forums to ‘code’ their cars–which is to say, modify the car’s software to provide these functions. That, not surprisingly, is highly frowned upon by BMW, for a very rational reason. Software updates could go awry, creating safety hazards from modified electronic control systems that operate every aspect of the car. Nonetheless, at least a few intrepid i3 REx owners have enthusiastically taken to coding their cars.”

In order to be in a position to solve major problems with coding in the future, your children need a quality coding education today. At CodeRev Kids, we offer a customized coding education that is both informative and fun.

Our lessons emphasize computational thinking, which encompasses a wide range of programming languages. With CodeRev Kids, the lessons build upon one another and we adjust starting points to each student’s level of expertise. As a result, the entire curriculum is customized.

If you want a quality coding education for your child, you can’t go wrong with CodeRev Kids!

Birthday Party Ideas for STEM-minded Kids

mathmaticsDoes your kid love science and math? Are they proud to be interested in the latest technology? Are you looking to throw them a birthday party they won’t forget? Then consider these cool ideas for unique birthday celebrations.

To start off with you’ll need to get your decorations in order. Of course you’ll begin with your typical party supplies like cups, plates, plastic utensils, napkins, and decorations. You’ll also want to pick up some cool science equipment. You may buy or borrow what you need. Some ideas include beakers, flasks, test tubes, safety goggles, magnifying glasses, a copy of the periodic table of the elements, lab coats, microscopes, clipboards, or rocks like pyrite, magnetite, agate, and quartz.

Next you’ll create invitations. If you’re short on time, just pick up a pack from your local party supply store. However, if you’ve got the time, there are tons of ways you can make your own! Perhaps cut a piece of paper into the shape of the flask, then glue green glitter all over it. You might glue the invitation to a container of touchable bubbles. Perhaps you could purchase a dozen mini clipboards and write the party info on an index card you attach it. You might even print out small copies of the periodic table of elements and write the details on the back of it.

Decorations and food are half the fun of the party! Past science projects make great decorations and conversation pieces, you could grow rock crystals and display them at the part, you could cut out squares of construction paper with each of the elements on them and tape them around the room, you might take a table and label it “weird science” and then put putty or odd toys on it.

For unique foods, try molecular fruit: take a melon baller, scoop up fruit like honeydew or watermelon, and then put them together with toothpicks to mimic the molecule chains. You can create elemental sandwiches by cutting sandwiches into fourths and then writing an element’s abbreviation on each one. Or you could get everyone involved and create a dish together! Teach the kids that cooking is science too by creating a pizza bar and watching the dough rise as it cooks.

Your birthday boy or girl probably has some ideas of cool party activities they’d like to do, but them started by suggesting creating a volcano with baking soda and vinegar, buy a fingerprint lifting kit, mix together Mentos and Diet Coke, or print off free safety badges and have each kid customize them.

Of course the perfect gift for a science minded young one is a code camp with CodeREV! Not only will your kid love the experience but they’ll learn potentially life-changing skills.

More and More Schools are Recognizing the Importance of Coding

Coding KeyboardIt’s no secret. Coding is becoming more of a necessary skill to have as every week goes by. In order to compete in a global economy, it is becoming essential. In some cases it’s the difference between getting an opportunity and not getting it. Schools are recognizing this and some are taking steps to address the lack of coding education in their institutions. Phys.org takes a look at this in a recent article titled “An education for the 21st century means teaching coding in schools.”

Leon Sterling of Phys.org writes, “There is merit in school students learning coding. We live in a digital world where computer programs underlie everything from business, marketing, aviation, science and medicine, to name several disciplines. During a recent presentation at a radio station, one of our hosts said that IT would have been better background for his career in radio than journalism. There is also a strong case to be made that Australia’s future prosperity will depend on delivering advanced services and digital technology, and that programming will be essential to this end. Computer programs and software are known to be a strong driver of productivity improvements in many fields. Being introduced to coding gives students an appreciation of what can be built with technology. We are surrounded by devices controlled by computers. Understanding how they work, and imagining new devices and services, are enhanced by understanding coding.”

The Huffington Post explores trying to implement coding in the classroom in a recent article titled “How to Implement a Coded Curriculum in Your School.” Peter Hutton of the Huffington Post writes, “So how have we done this? Two years ago we decided to teach students to write code as a problem solving tool in geometry. Geometry is a course where logic, spatial reasoning and problem-solving are the big skills we’re trying to build, and all of those skills can be built through coding. It seemed like a great place to start; the plan was to eventually expand this approach into various other classes in order to fully integrate coding into our curriculum. Surprise! Within two months, teachers in every department in every grade were finding ways coding could expand possibilities for work in their disciplines. English students used code to digitally act out scenes from Macbeth and analyze poetry; art students created drawings like this one; modern language students used code to make vocabulary flashcards; 7th grade history students coded historical statistics. At the end of the year, we discovered that every student in the school had had at least one meaningful experience with writing code.”

While coding in the classroom will go a long way towards advancing the prospects of students throughout the country, customized coding education programs are what will take them to the next level.

CodeREV’s STEM focused courses and tech camps provide the basis for a much deeper education in technology than what students receive at their schools. Our instructors are all industry tested STEM and coding professionals. All of our Tech/Coding classes and camps are project-based, meaning students are applying computational thinking to each coding skill they learn. Also, they are using the highest level processing skills as identified by the Common Core for true comprehension of the material they are learning to use and apply.

If you’re looking for the best coding education for your child, your best bet is CodeREV. Contact us so your child can become a CodeREV Kid!

What does it take to build robots for a living?

Robotic PartsHas your kid asked you this question? Well, it turns out that this is something asked by many children. Robotics has taken hold of the imaginations of young people for over half a century, even before B-9 warned Will Robinson of danger and Robby helped Adams defeat Morbius. This urge to learn about and build robots is a great thing to foster in your child.

There are many products for children on the market these days that appeal to the robotically inclined. This is great because it is paramount that your child begins to learn about this complicated technological field as early as is possible. While you may have grown up with annoying girder and screw kits for your engineering play as a child, there are much better things around these days. Most notably, there are great Lego kits for building robotic projects that include the ability to learn to program creations with a home computer. There are plenty of other kits from a variety of manufacturers that will fit the particular interests of your child.

One of the best ways to help your child learn about robotics is to enroll them in afterschool or camp programs which specialize in teaching programming, engineering, or robotics to children. CodeRev is a great California company which leads the country in providing this type of service to young people of all backgrounds and levels of computer experience. Robotics classes at CodeRev expose your children to a number of aspects of robotics through the use of fun projects involving Legos Mindstorms, basic programming, and circuitry. What’s more, as your child gains experience in the area, they will get to use technology like Arduinos and Rasberry Pi that innovators use in the industry today.

Of course, along with focused extracurricular activities, school is of paramount importance. It is especially essential that you encourage your child’s growth in math and science to help them meet their goals in robotics. I’m not just talking about physics and chemistry either. Biology is a great thing to know about when you are trying to make a machine mimic life! Art will be helpful in developing your child’s mind. Remember that even if you child doesn’t end up pursuing a career in robotics, the skills that you help foster in your child will help them in other jobs and interests. Coding and robotics are cropping up everywhere these days.

What does it take to design video games?

Video GamesMany kids ask their parents this question, or simply state “I want to design video games.” Luckily it might mean that something good will come of all those hours spent in front of the television, controller in hand. However, many children don’t realize how hard it is to become a video game designer or developer or how competitive the industry really is.  So, if your kid is serious about pursuing and interest in video games, make an effort to nurture the skills that she or he will need to be successful. Many of these skills are not taught in most schools, but this interest can be a very productive and rewarding extracurricular activity.

CodeRev is a wonderful California organization which specializes in teaching children to code and love to use the computers while developing skills that will be essential professionally in the near future. Your child can take part in Spring or Summer Camps along with wonderful afterschool programs. Younger kids can start with learning to make Minecraft levels to gain an understanding of visuals and design. They can then work up through a variety of other programs along with older children in both coding and video game design, along with classes on related subjects like robotics and web design.

When it comes to school itself, make an effort to encourage a number of subjects in your child’s learning. Visual art and music classes will develop your kid’s creative mind while math and science are needed to develop an advanced and competitive understanding of computers and games. As it is not often taught in schools, try to encourage your child to continue to learn coding on the side. Again, continuing education at places like CodeRev is a great way to accomplish this. To design video games in this day and age you have to develop a large amount of experience before most companies will hire you. The industry is often too fast-paced to train people in it. Summer internships are a great way for your kid to develop skills in making video games in between college semesters. These experiences will keep your child’s mind active while preparing them for a potentially lucrative field. What’s more you can rest easy knowing that if you child does lose interest in video games as a career, the skills that they learned pursuing it will be helpful in a variety of other paths that they may choose.

Learning In California

San FransciscoOf all the states in the USA, California is a great place to raise a child. There are many reasons that California is so good for growing kids, and I will try to hit the high points in this short article. One of the most important parts of being a parent is trying to foster the development and learning of your child without smothering or being overprotective. We all want to help a child do what they want, and one of the most critical ways that we do that is by finding great activities which stimulate our kids’ minds. California is wonderful in that this journey of learning can reliably start in the public school system. The schools will be able to expose your child to a variety of ideas and subjects, but there are some things which may not be covered in class. Never fear, there are great afterschool programs and camps in California to further your child’s learning and career in areas that school might miss. CodeRev Kids is one of my favorite examples of these programs. They do a great job of making learning about computers and coding fun for kids in both after school and camp programs. If someone had put Minecraft in front of me when I was young, I might have learned to code too!

The outdoors are a great place too. No matter where you live there are a number of great outdoor activities for you child from the mountains to the oceans. If you child shows a significant amount of athletic talent, California boasts an amazing density of national and state parks and locations, as well as world class museums. The Exploratorium is one of my favorites in San Francisco. There are even great trade and craft programs all over the state. Take advantage of the great the state school and community college systems in California as they often offer great programs for your younger kids which might spark interest in them early in life.