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‘Hour of Code’ promotes computer science to students

Next week, the Mercer Island School District will participate in a national event called ‘Hour of Code’ as part of Computer Science Education Week, which will encourage coding and computer science access and instruction.

Preparing students for a digital economy is a core piece of the district’s Vision 2020 that drives the instructional program. That includes preparing students for potential careers in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). Age-appropriate lessons and activities will also be taught next week at Mercer Island elementary schools.

“The idea here is that exposure to code, and empowering students to create code, will give them insights on how computers and programs work and inspire them to engage in computer science learning with confidence,” said Gary Barone, who teaches a video game programming class at Islander Middle School.

The event is sponsored by Seattle-based Code.org, which has created free tutorials with the help of engineers from companies like Microsoft, Facebook, Twitter and Google for teachers to use in class. Code.org projects that by 2020, there will be 1 million more jobs in computer science than there are computer science students in the United States.

Learn more about ‘Hour of Code’ and how younger students are participating by watching this video on YouTube. It guides students through the process of making characters from the popular game Angry Birds take specific actions.

 

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