It started before our Easter classes – parents and teens themselves calling me to find out if we had anything to offer to 15 & 16 year olds who are keen to learn to code. And if not us, who?
The fact is that I don’t personally know of anyone offering coding classes to teens. There are a number of online resources that are quite good, but it’s hard to get started. Which language should you take on? What are the different languages used for? How do you plan a project? Where can you turn when you get stuck? And one more common request – I want to do this with other teens not sit at home by myself!
We listened to you and we have put together two classes for teens this summer (2013). There are only a few spots left so if you think you would like to participate, please book as soon as you can! If you find that it’s all booked up, send me an email and I’ll see if I can add capacity.
The first course is a Teen Coding Course. A small group will work with one of our tutors, a university student studying software engineering, at Imperial College from 10am to 3pm for five days starting 5 August 2013. The course will include an overview of coding languages generally, principles and help in designing a simple project, and support as teens explore on-line resources for learning either Python or Java. Your peers and the tutor will be on-hand to act as a sounding board, to help you figure out how to ask the right question so you can find assistance on-line, and to help you when you get stuck. This is a “mentored self-study” course and participants will spend time working on their own coding and projects, with the help of their tutor. This course will be offered 5-9 August only.
We are also offering a Teen Hardware Course. This course takes you to the place where coding and electronics meet. One of our Fire Tech Camp tutors will walk you through the process of planning and building an Arduino based project that includes cyber-physical systems. (There are some cool project examples HERE although keep in mind we only have a week to get it built!) You can think of this as an applied robotics course, as you think about how to use sensors, code and the platform to build something completely new. Small teams of 2-3 people will be working on an Arduino, leveraging each others building and coding skills. Previous coding and/or electronics experience not required but definitely helpful. Please let us know on your registration form if you do have any coding/electronics experience. This course will be offered 12-16 August only.
Teen courses are run quite differently from the camps for the younger kids. Teens need to turn up for a 10am start (because teens need their beauty sleep!), and they will work until 3pm. You’ll need to bring your own laptop and either your food or money to buy something at one of the cafés. These summer courses will be held at Imperial College using our Fire Tech Camp team of tutors and camp leaders. Each of these courses is initially being offered just one week of the summer, to a small group. Book soon to avoid disappointment!