Code-4-Kids is definitely my favorite service event in APO. I don’t say this just because I run the program, but when I volunteer at Belle Sherman Elementary School, I can really see the direct impact that my time has on the students and how much fun they are deriving from the experience. Code-4-Kids teaches courses in all grades K-5, but I especially love teaching the younger students. To some, it may seem so strange to teach computer science to elementary students, because how could a 10-year-old, let alone a 5-year-old, understand what an algorithm is. However, through my teaching experience, I have discovered that these kids absolutely love learning new material and they are able to pick up each concept very quickly. My favorite part of teaching is when I see it click in a student’s mind, and all of a sudden, everything I’ve been saying to them makes sense.
Code-4-Kids happens every week, and I am always greeted by tons of smiling faces. I usually start out by introducing a new concept to students, whether it be algorithms, loops, conditionals, debugging, or something new, and then we play a game together that gets students in the mood to collaborate and helps them understand the new concept. Then students pair up and they work together on iPads or Chromebooks to solve the exercises that we’ve prepared.
The Code-4-Kids program is all about getting students exposed to computer science early on in their education and eventually integrating computer science lessons into the daily school curriculum. Belle Sherman Elementary School is working hard to show students the impact of technology in their lives and Code-4-Kids is a way for students to understand that technology and use it to create anything they can imagine!