Coppin State University Computer Science Majors (and Minors) are volunteering to help introduce computer programming (coding) to students around Baltimore City.
It is critical to be introduced to computer science and the art/science of programming at an early age. The ability to think creatively and turn your ideas into working code is what Dr. Hatley often calls a “SuperPower.” She has been saying it for over a decade now and it seems to be catching on. Many are now calling the ability to code a superpower.
Students enrolled in Computer Science at Coppin State (either as a major or minor) learn to code during their first few semesters by taking COSC-199, COSC-220, and COSC-221 and in these classes the programming language of focus in Java!
Many students struggle initially with thinking and creating in this new paradigm but they soon get the hang of it. Many wish they had began learning at a much earlier age.
As a result, many will have the opportunity to help introduce others to coding this coming December as we participate in the city-wide Hour of Code. Details of Hour of Code are listed below. If you are interested in volunteering, please contact us immediately!
Frequently Asked Questions
What is “The Hour of Code”?
It is a global movement reaching tens of millions of students in 180+ countries during Computer Science Education Week (first week of December). It is a fun way to get students engaged with computer science.
I have no computer science experience, can I volunteer?
ABSOLUTELY! Many of our volunteers have no computer science experience. The activities are fun, easy, and intuitive. All you need to do is practice the assigned activity before you volunteer (about 30 – 45 minutes), and have fun. Plus, you get the school solution guide!
How does The Hour of Code work?
Volunteers teach an Hour of Code using a fully developed age-appropriate curriculum. Teaching requires no coding experience, as the modules are all drag-and-drop and designed for kids with no previous coding experience. Students work through the appropriate lesson plan for their age at their own pace, either on their own computer or in a group setting. Volunteers help students by introducing the activity and then letting the kids work through at their own pace. Volunteers help students who get stuck (volunteers have the solution guide). Those volunteers who work in the technology industry provide students with important role models who can inspire students in pursuing careers in technology by sharing their experience and passion.
What does the volunteer commitment involve?
Volunteering will require about 2 hours of your time. Before your Volunteer Day please take 30 – 45 minutes to read the lesson plan assigned to you and familiarize yourself with the activity for your grade by doing the coding module yourself. On your volunteer day, please plan to arrive 15 minutes early at the school and spend 45 minutes – 1 hour working with students, answering their questions and helping students figure out problems when they are stuck. If you are an IT professional please share how you use computer science in your job.
Where can I volunteer?
50 of the ~170 Baltimore City Public Schools have signed up to teach The Hour of Code between December 3 – 7th 2018. The list of schools and a map are provided in the survey where volunteers are asked to register. We have a number of employers who are encouraging their employees to volunteer. We expect to have teams of volunteers working across our 50 participating schools.
How do I sign up?
Volunteers need to register by November 16th and will be paired with a school based on their preferred day, grade, and location. A volunteer coordinator will reach out volunteers to confirm scheduling details and provide curriculum information.
Why is the Hour of Code important?
Computer Science impacts every aspect of our lives (think GPS, Siri, FaceTime, etc.). For today’s students to be prepared for the future, they need to understand the basics of computational thinking regardless of their career choice. Today, in Baltimore City 7 of our ~170 public schools offer computer science to students, but this is rapidly expanding as educators, legislators, and parents realize the importance of computer science education in preparing students for the future. This year, Maryland passed House Bill 281 which states that by 2021 all Maryland High Schools will offer at least one computer science class. Exposing students to computer science through The Hour of Code is an important step in demystifying the field of computer science and preparing our students for the future.