Are your kids as obsessed with devices/video games as mine are?
With school starting up already, it seems like I barely have a chance to see them before they run off to their devices of choice.
Fortunately, I found a way to channel some of that time into quality educational and parent-child time: Coding and Cupcakes, and CoderDojoKC. Before I tell you about these programs, I have to mention that they are made available by Kansas City Women in Technology, an incredible non-profit organization that works to “bring current women in tech together for solidarity, and to help encourage girls and women to pursue technology careers.”
And now, for the kid activities:
Coding and Cupcakes: My daughter has talked about opening her own cupcake store for years now, so when I first heard about Coding and Cupcakes, I signed up immediately. Together, along with several other mother-daughter duos, we learned how to create an online cupcake shop from scratch. It was a great mix of creativity and logic: While the girls learned to code and create their website, they were also picking page colors, creating the name of their store, and of course, developing their unique cupcake flavor combinations. Added bonuses were the great (and patient) women mentors who taught us, the creative space downtown to work in, and the delicious cupcake snack during the session.
I have to be honest, I enjoyed myself as much as my daughter did. And I continue to love watching her show interest in other technology-related activities that go beyond staring blankly at the latest YouTube videos! The next Coding and Cupcakes session is September 10, from 2-5pm. They run the 2nd Saturday of each month, so you and your daughter can enjoy it anytime. No coding experience is needed. Cost for the session is $25/parent-child combo.
CoderDojoKC: Another great program is CoderDojoKC. This one is for boys and girls, ages 7-17, and now that we’re back to school, my son is all over going to this class. All skill levels are welcome, and kids under 13 get to work with their parents on the projects offered during the sessions. Basically, kids learn how to code, and can work on a variety of projects to develop their skills. Just like with Coding and Cupcakes, kiddos learn how to “problem solve, create, and collaborate around technical solutions,” according to CoderDojoKC.com.
Also, if your son (like mine) has visions of becoming a video game creator someday, the CoderDojoKC website has tons of links to help your child get into the coding groove at home. But I recommend going to at least one session, since the teamwork and collaboration is part of the coding fun. CoderDojo is free, and happens on the 2nd Saturday of each month. The next session is September 10 at 9am.
Who knew learning could be so much fun!
Good luck getting your kids back into the swing of school. If you have other great ways to sneak in some education under the guise of fun, be sure to let us know in the comments section below!