Frequent Questions 
 

Laptops:
Your child will need a laptop computer for this class.  Click this link for more information.


Do you offer a sibling discount?
Yes.  You can save 10% off a sibling's registration.  When paying with Paypal, simply select the number of students.  Please fill out a registration form for each student.


My child took your summer class.  Does this class cover new material?

Please send me an email if your child took a class with me over the summer and would like to continue during the school year. 

Students who have already learned Scratch with me should start this class in the 2nd quarter.  Students who have already taken JavaScript with me should take this class in the 3rd quarter.  Students who took advanced JavaScript with me last summer could join this class in the 4th quarter.


My child already took coding classes elsewhere.  Is this class going to be too easy?
During this course we will build multiple projects designed to progressively introduce basic, intermediate and advanced concepts.  I have had great success teaching programming to students with little or no coding experience, but can also assure you that students with previous experience will learn a lot in this course.


Why not start with a scripted language like JavaScript?  Why Scratch?
Scratch is a visual programming language developed by MIT to teach programming without requiring students to learn syntax at the same time.  This enables students to focus on programming logic, problem solving and design that are common to all programming languages.  Many colleges use it for their Intro to Programming courses for just that purpose.  I have had great success teaching JavaScript to 4th and 5th grade students, but would rather teach kids how to create and solve problems with code first, and then teach a scripted language.

We will be using Scratch in our first quarter, and then transitioning to JavaScript.  Even if your child has previous Scratch experience, we will probably move beyond their knowledge very quickly.


What is your teaching philosophy?
I believe the best way to teach kids to code is to show them how they can create their own games.  The joy of bringing their own creations to life is incredibly motivating!
 
I begin with  Scratch because it enables students to focus on programming logic, problem solving and design that are common to all programming languages.  Once they are comfortable creating their own games I transition them to JavaScript.  I chose JavaScript because it is a very popular language, it has many free online tutorials and resources, and can be used in Unity, a professional development environment. 
 
I use free online Learning Environments such as Scratch and Khan Academy so that kids can continue to code at home from any computer without having to purchase and install development software.  These Learning Environments also enable kids to share their creations and learn from others in an online community.
 
Once students are comfortable making their own JavaScript programs, I introduce them to C# and Unity.  Unity is a professional development environment used by big software companies and indie developers alike.  Once students are coding in Unity they will be developing a skill that is very much in demand in the job market.  They will also be able to publish their games on Ipads, Android phones, the Xbox, PlayStation as well as PC and Mac.


What is the best way to contact you?
Feel free to email me at: