I’m a parent of elementary school kids, aged 6 and 9. I volunteer in many aspects of my kids’ school, but among the most rewarding of these experiences have been the times I’ve volunteered for our school’s Hour of Code event.
Lack of diversity in the tech industry is a systemic problem and nobody has yet figured out how to solve it. But events like Hour of Code seem to be doing a good job fighting for a solution.
The most amazing thing, for me, about volunteering for Hour of Code, is seeing the looks on kids’ faces when they realize “they can code.” They’re invited to the party, and they know it. That’s golden.
Having volunteered for several years, I’ve seen that look on the faces of kids of every gender, race, and cultural background. They all get it. They all feel empowered. They’re all excited by the prospect of learning this skill, and contributing their abilities to the many problems that coding can help to solve.
My kids’ school runs its “Hour of Code” event off-schedule, to avoid traffic conflicts with other schools who use the resources from the official home page.
I’ll be volunteering next week, and I’m looking forward to seeing that look on the faces of kids in our school. If you have the luxury of offering some of your own time, I hope you’ll also consider starting, or joining, an “Hour of Code” initiative at your own kids’ school!