Hour of Code is here! The global campaign to show that anyone can learn the basics of coding and become a maker, a creator, an innovator runs from December 8 to December 14, 2014. During this annual event, millions of students around the world will try out computer programming for the first time. The latest count shows 65,000 events being held in over 150 countries.
Why Learn Coding?
Programming (also known as coding) is how sites like Facebook and apps like Instagram are made. Knowing how to program is like having a computing super power. Steve Jobs, Mark Zuckerberg and Bill Gates agree that students who learn how to code have a skill that not only teaches you how to work with computers, but also teaches you how to think about solving problems with systems.
Where to Learn an Hour of Code
We’ve rounded up a variety of educational websites offering Hour of Code activities. Most are completely free and can be done at any time during the week.
Code Academy: Courses run the gamut from HTML/CSS to web development, programming languages to integrating APIs. And if an hour is too much time to commit, Code Academy even has 30-minute courses!
Tynker: Designed especially for kids, who can build programs by connecting LEGO\xae-like visual code blocks. Kids can play fun games, learn to code and make their own games with over a dozen special Hour of Code activities.
Grok Learning: Activities can be completed in class, or at home; on your own, with friends, or with the help of your teacher. They are designed for complete beginners, although seasoned coders can find activities, too. Check out Is Eliza Human? and Emoticon Madness! (Python), Space (Blockly) and more.
Khan Academy: Offers several different Hour of Code lessons that require no prior experience. Kids can try one or try them all and get a badge for each lesson in the process. Check out Drawing with Code, Making Webpages, Working with Data.
Scratch: MIT’s programming language that lets you create stories, games, and animations that you can share with others around the world. In the process of designing and programming Scratch projects, young people learn to think creatively, reason systematically, and work collaboratively. And it’s free! Get started here.
Webmaker: Offers activities that introduce learners to basic coding and computer programming. No experience is required – all you need is a computer.
We’d love you to share your Hour of Code projects with us, and if you know of other sites to recommend, please let us know and we’ll add it to our list.