Codeathon -Coding Contest for Students
Coding consists of writing one of 250 different languages understood by computers. Not unlike human language, different types of computers and software understand different languages. Like learning French or Spanish, learning a computer language is easier for young learners especially through block coding. Block coding allows students to start learning code with colour-coded puzzle pieces that translate into text coding.
During the week of May 7-11 students across Wetaskiwin Regional Public Schools took part in a Codeathon to raise awareness about computational thinking and coding. Students learned to code through code.org and Scratch where they were able to complete self-guided tutorials and build their own apps, games and animations. More than 40 individual classes participated in Codeathon and these students racked up 39993 minutes of code throughout the week. That's 645.5 hours!! Way to go WRPS students!
Economists project that as many as 65% of current school students will grow up to work in jobs that don't exist yet using technology that has not yet been invented. Over the next 10 years they project a shortage of 1 million+ programmers across North America. Companies like Google, Dropbox and YouTube express they are hiring every programmer who walks through their doors due to a shortage already. These and other large companies invest in sites like code.org and Scratch where students can learn to code for free in a safe educational environment.
Coding skills are quickly becoming desired in every field from agriculture to medicine to space exploration. The reality for our students is that candidates who can code will have a distinct advantage over other qualified candidates when applying for jobs across many industries in the future. With the exponential growth in technology changing the face of the work world WRPS wants to give our students the best chance for success in this future.