Boardman library hosts computer code writing event


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Neighbors | Tim Cleveland.Boardman library youth services librarian spoke to the attendees of the computer code writing class at its beginning.

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Neighbors | Tim Cleveland.Boardman library youth services librarian Allie Graf brought up the screen she needed as she prepared for the computer code writing class.

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Neighbors | Tim Cleveland.Boardman library youth services librarian Allie Graf (left) spoke to the attendees of the computer code writing class before it got started.

By TIM CLEVELAND

tcleveland@vindy.com

The Boardman library offered a one-hour class on Dec. 11 to teach children in grades 4-12 how to write computer code as part of The Hour of Code, an international initiative to teach kids to program (code) a computer.

The Hour of Code is part of National Computer Science Week, which was from Dec. 8-12.

“We are going to be doing object-based coding because there’s such an interest in computer science and a lot of kids need to know this kind of thing for the future job market,” said Boardman library youth services librarian Allie Graf, who taught the class.

“It’s a national initiative to do this computer science class this week, so we thought it would be good. School’s have so much going on. If the library can be a place they can come if they can’t fit it in at school, then we can have our Hour of Code here at the library.”

Three children attended the event. They were taught to write source code but using objects in a drag and drop fashion. They dragged blocks of instruction to one side of the screen which tells the program to run something. At the end of the hour each participant received a certificate.

Anyone seeking to learn more can go to www.code.org, where they can take self-paced, self-directed lessons that teach how to do basic computer programming. The site said anyone from ages 4-104 can learn how to do it.

While the computer code writing class was a one-time event, the Boardman library will be hosting a similar program in March for youth in grades 7-12 to correspond with Teen Tech Week. It will be a week-long camp from 4-5 p.m., with each day building on what they learned the day before.

Graf said the event was a good way to learn new skills as well as a way to better learn how computers work.

“It’s a good brain activity. It teaches you to think in ways that maybe you didn’t before and seeing kind of what’s under the hood of computer programs,” she said. “I think it’s a good benefit because we use the computer but we don’t understand how it works, so this is kind of digging a little bit deeper, trying to understand how the programs run.”

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