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Discussion on: Code Camp Curriculum

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Gary Ray

There are a few details that might help those who want to give advice.

1) How long is the camp, and what is the prospective session schedule? For example, one week, M-F with a morning session from 8:30-11:30, lunch from 11:30 to 1, and an afternoon session from 1-3.

2) If there are multiple sessions and topics, how are you going to have the kids schedule their time? Can you assume that if someone picks a python track that they will get consecutive sessions, and understand prerequisites for the later topics.

3) In addition to the RaspberryPi, what tools are available? Will they have a screen and keyboard to plug into the pi? Will they program on some other computer in a lab and then move code to the pi?

All that said, I have done one-day code camps with two 3 hour sessions on Python for kids. I blogged about that experience:

If you have them for a week, and can build a progressive curriculum, then basing it on the Hello, World! python book in my post is a great idea. It's perfectly reasonable that by the end of the week the kids would be able to follow along and code the skiing game in the book, as well as make their own modifications.

jasodonnell profile image
James O'Donnell Author

I wish I could heart this more than once. Your blog post hits home.

The kids we are working with are from several disadvantaged schools here in Albuquerque. Our first take is that we will get better participation if we can cover as the need for child care during one of the school breaks. So we will be running the camp for five days. We are using all Raspberry Pi and will be providing these kids with computers, keyboard, mouse and screen for the class. They take the system home at the end of camp.

The topics are a big problem. I am trying to take the approach that these kids need not have ever used a computer before. The first day is probably going to be spent getting used to NOOBs. From there? I don't know. I have seen several approaches and theories on the best way to introduce programming concepts before breaking out code. Sadly, I haven't seen a condensed curriculum around this.