By Sarah Savannah Griffin
THATCHER — This December, Eastern Arizona College’s Business and Computer department will host the second annual “Coding for Kids – Hour of Code” event in the EAC High Tech Center. The free sessions will be held in the evenings Dec. 4-7, and all-day Saturday, Dec. 8.
EAC will join more than 100 partners supporting the movement dedicated to teaching students how to write code. Anyone ages 7-18 are encouraged to sign up for one of the Hour of Code sessions, taught by Associate Professor Lydia Mata and EAC computer students.
“Computers are everywhere, changing every industry on the planet but fewer than half of all schools teach computer science,” Mata said. “With the Hour of Code, the importance of computer science has been recognized on the homepages of Google, MSN, and Yahoo!. Every Apple store in the world has hosted Hour of Code, and many celebrities have written their first line of code as part of the campaign. Our school couldn’t be more excited to join them and introduce coding to kids in the Gila Valley.”
Each session will begin with a 15-minute introduction and one hour of Hour of Coding tutorials. Students older than 13 will work on iPads and will be provided tutorials for beginning, intermediate, and advanced coders; those younger will have tutorials that incorporate favorite characters from Disney’s Moana and Frozen, Angry Birds, Star Wars, Minecraft, The Grinch, and Harry Potter. Tutorials are self-paced and interactive so students can see immediate results from their written code.
“From phones to cars to medicine, technology touches every part of our lives,” said Susan Wojcicki, CEO of YouTube. “If you can create technology, you can change the world.”