13 Jul Virtual Coding Bootcamp: The Future Is Now
The world over, we found ourselves in a situation that no one could have seen coming. A highly contagious, deadly disease spread across the globe and forced a stop to normal day to day activities including the education system. Many nations, including Zimbabwe, declared a national shutdown to help combat the spread of COVID-19. Schools and businesses closed down without knowledge of when they would reopen. No one expected the shut down to go on long as it did. Currently, some countries have opened partially but schools still remain closed.
For quite some time, it has been in general conversation that technology is the way of the future and important for developing countries to ensure that the current generation is equipped with the necessary skills to enable them to be part of the 4th industrial revolution. The closing of schools has once again highlighted the importance of technology and has given us a glimpse into how a technology-driven future will look like. Digital literacy is now an essential skill for every human being and one might argue, especially for our children.
Consequently, Impact Hub Harare launched its first Virtual Coding Bootcamp at the end of May 2020 pivoting away from the traditional, physical bootcamp in order to adhere to social distancing norms and safety standards. The programme aims to equip children aged 9 -14 years with programming skills. However, the curriculum goes beyond the ordinary drag and drop games prevalent in most kid-friendly coding classes taught currently. The curriculum challenges students to expand their abilities and to think logically and outside the box. At the end of the programme, the participants are able to build a basic website using HTML & CSS. We had reservations of whether this first cohort that consisted of 8 – 10-year-olds would grasp these advanced concepts but they surpassed our expectations and managed to launch their own sites. Parents and students were left wanting for more at the end of the programme.
Although many people are still relying on traditional methods of teaching while others are in the process of adapting to change, the Impact Hub Harare Coding Bootcamp has taken advantage of the use of technology and runs classes online using the Zoom platform. In addition to learning the tech aspects of coding, it has also helped improve the student’s general computer skills and communication skills as these skills are necessary for students to completely engage with the content. Through the use of technology, we aim to reach more students and equip them with skills that will help them to adjust to the new normal and their future tech careers.
If your child missed the first cohort of the Coding Bootcamp, they can register for the 2nd Cohort using the following link: https://forms.gle/zHQk33GjunmR5T1Q8. The programme is for participants aged 9-14 years.