Why code? - Guest Blog Post #codingintheclassroom #hourofcode #k12coding

Who better to speak to the power of coding in the classroom than the eLearning Contributor who developed the Coding in the Classroom training herself?

Guest Blog Post by Velvet Holmes, eLearning Contributor

We all like to use technology, but did you know that we currently have too many consumers of technology and not enough creators? Learning to code is basically learning a new language. This language is a powerful tool that our learners will need to be successful in their future. Anyone can code.

Employment for computer science jobs is projected to grow 15% in the next 7 years. We are currently at approximately 100,000 jobs left unfilled and that is expected to grow to 1,000,000 due to the fact that there are not enough students in the computer science field. Twenty-five states currently do not allow computer science classes to count towards high school graduation. We need to play a fast game of catch up!

“Learning to write programs stretches your mind, and helps you think better, creates a way of thinking about things that I think is helpful in all domains.“ -Bill Gates

My minor in college was math and computer science. I never really thought I would do anything with programming because I really didn’t enjoy it. However, recently, I have found that I am quite passionate about teaching this language to our learners. I see how it makes them think. They ask questions, they try things, they fail, but continue to find a solution to the problem they are solving. Learning with blockly coding is engaging for students. Once they understand the basic concepts of the language, they discover a new way they can express their ideas and learning. They see past the language and envision their potential in unlocking a whole new world of possibilities. I want that for them.

Reference: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition, Computer and Information Research Scientists, on this website. (visited February 21, 2015).

Velvet Holmes is a passionate Information Technology Literacy Teacher with the Oregon School District. Personalized learning has been the focus in her district for the past 3 years, so she has grown to learn many strategies towards a learner-centered environment. As a Google-Certified Educator in a 4k-12 GAFE district, she gets the opportunity to immerse herself in the ever-changing Google stratosphere daily! She also celebrates the hour of code with her entire district and has a coding club at Brooklyn Elementary School. She is constantly learning and challenging herself to bring engaging ideas to every student. Velvet truly believes that it is alright to FAIL--it’s the First Attempt In Learning!

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