Middle school students are equipped with state-of-the-art technology that allows them to explore different learning opportunities through computers and robotics as part of their curriculum in class. Coding is one example of what students are learning in Lynne Torrey’s new exploratory class at the Flexible Innovative Technology Lab.
As an extension to what students are already discovering in class, Torrey held a “Girls Code Night” evening session on Nov. 5 to provide middle school students with another opportunity to further explore their interests. More than two dozen students signed up for the first of four afterschool sessions, where they participated in coding and programming exercises. The next class will be held for boys in January.
“Coding is really important and it’s really cool,” said seventh-grader Annabelle Krause, who founded a robotics team at the middle school this year. “It’s important that girls get involved in coding. It used to be a male job. Computers are such a big part of our culture and knowing how to code is just going to become a more useful skill as time goes on.”
Torrey said the goal of Girls Code Night was to create a space where girls will instantly recognize that they can be themselves and take educational risks among supportive peers. The program was also designed to demonstrate how coding plays an integral role in almost everything they know to be relevant and exciting.
“The evening allowed time for the girls to explore and discover how much fun and empowering coding can be,” Torrey said. “Students are thirsting for opportunities to get to know what computer programming is and to try it out for themselves. Their enthusiasm and desire to learn is what makes this program important.”