Pupils take on coding world record attempt
Computer coding is everywhere. As the technology sector expands at an increasing rate, educators attempt to keep up with it.
Last week, a group of Christchurch students took part in a world record attempt for the amount of children coding on a project, the ‘‘Moonhack projects’’, in a single day.
Several dozen St Francis of Assisi School pupils spent the most part of Tuesday glued to their computers, coding, alongside their Australian counterparts across the ditch who attempted to break the world record last year.
Aging from year 3 to year 8, the pupils were learning about how to code and manipulate computer systems through educational software programmes including Scratch and Trinket which came with instructional manuals for the pupils and teachers.
‘‘We’re trying to break the world record,’’ said year 6 pupil Tamera Adams, 10.
‘‘Imagine if we were in the 2017 Guinness Book of World Records.’’
Some of the year 7 and 8 students said doing coding was an important pathway for their later careers, and others said it was something which their parents had never heard of.
Year 8 St Francis of Assisi student Niamh Webb, 13, codes at home and said she enjoyed the problem solving aspect of it.
‘‘It’s the only language I can learn. When I first started last year I has no idea what I was doing in the slightest. But I got it eventually.’’
Studying code at a weekly after school session and twice-weekly lunchtime sessions as extracurricular activities, teacher and e-learning co-ordinator Whitney Hansen said the uptake was outstanding.
‘‘There were so many kids who wanted to do it... Of the 373 students, we’ve probably got around 200 choosing to do coding extra,’’ she said.
Hansen said friends studying computer science at university were studying some of the same techniques her young students were learning.
‘‘It’s the idea of being able to create, not just consume, and they’re speaking the language of technology.
‘‘These kids do some pretty amazing things.’’
St Francis of Assisi principal Jo Earl said it was vital the school kept up with the rapidly changing world of technology for the students.
‘‘It’s the problem-solving. These are the skills these children are going to need in the future. Our job is to provide them with the opportunity to get those skills while they’re here with us.’’
St Francis of Assisi School pupils took part in a challenge to break the world record for the amount of children coding around the world in one day.