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Hour of Code: The largest learning event in history

In today’s society, computers are everywhere; however, fewer students are learning computer science. To bring the buzz about computer science into CFIS, our Director of Educational Technology Alex Lianne Carter worked with CFIS Technology Reps Carrie Mah, University of Calgary computer science student, and other enthusiastic teachers to participate in Hour of Code during Computer Science Education Week December 7-13.

The Hour of Code, organized by the nonprofit Code.org and over 100 others, is a statement that today’s generation of students are ready to learn critical skills for 21st century success. Over the year, this event has made history with more than 100 million students across the world who have participated in an Hour of Code. Thanks to the Hour of Code, computer science has now been on the homepages of Google, YouTube, Yahoo and even Disney. Each year, more than 100 partners join together to support this movement. Last year, every Apple Store in the world hosted an Hour of Code and US President Barack Obama wrote his first line of code as part of the campaign.

Thanks to the Giving Catalogue, our younger students participated in Hour of Code by playing with their new robot kits, Kibo. To see the students eyes light up when Kibo began to move was priceless. Our older students completed various tutorials in English, French and Spanish. These tutorials included programming and coding with Minecraft, Frozen, Star Wars, Flappy Bird, etc, all of which were provided and translated by https://code.org/learn.  

Conducting such an activity also allowed us to get to know which students have already began to learn to code. Those who share a passion for computer science were also given the opportunity to discuss about their passion and knowledge with an expert Carrie Mah. Some students who were nervous about the idea of coding where a little hesitant at the beginning, but by the end were giving each other high fives and sharing their excitement when they passed a level. And many others, were excited to share what they created with others and couldn’t wait to try other tutorials to learn more about coding.

With this being a new event to CFIS, we had approximately 350 student and teacher participants. With its success across the school this year, we hope to bring every class on board to participate next year.  

If you would like to extend the Hour of Code at home with your child, students can participate in these various computer science activities across Calgary: