Frequent Questions 



WHICH CLASS IS RIGHT FOR MY CHILD?

My child took your Scratch class last summer. 
Most returning students should enroll in JavaScript.  Younger students who haven't continued to program at home however may retake Scratch.  Its better for students to be comfortable making their own programs before taking JavaScript.

My child took your JavaScript class last summer. 
Students who took JavaScript 1 or 2 last summer are welcome to take our Unity class.  This full-day course is for students who want to learn more about the tools professional programmers use to make games.  Students must download the Unity development software onto their own laptops.  During class we will use Unity to make our own 3d game and export it so it can run on any Mac or PC! 

Younger students who haven't continued to program at home during the school year may retake JavaScript if they choose.  

My child took your Unity class last summer. 
Students who took Unity last summer should enroll in our new full-day Unity course.  This expanded course will review the skills students learned last year, introduce many new concepts and then demonstrate how to publish completed projects.
Younger students who haven't continued to program at home during the school year may retake JavaScript if they choose.

My child finished your after-school Coding Academy. 
Coding Academy graduates are welcome to take our Unity class.  This full-day course is for students who want to learn more about the tools professional programmers use to make games.  Students must download the Unity development software onto their own laptops.  During class we will use Unity to make our own 3d game and export it so it can run on any Mac or PC! 

Younger students who haven't continued to program at home during the school year may retake JavaScript if they choose.


My child already codes in Hopscotch. 
Our Scratch class is the best choice.  While both Hopscotch and Scratch use a visual blockly programming language, Scratch is far more powerful, and we will move beyond what your child has accomplished with Hopscotch fairly quickly.
 
My child loves coding and is very bright, but will only be in 3rd grade next year.  Can he still take your Scratch class?
Unfortunately no.  Younger students love to code, but have not yet developed the abstract thinking skills necessary to create complex projects.  If you have an iPad, I recommend downloading Scratch Jr. and Hopscotch.  These are wonderful coding resources that your child can explore on their own, or together with a parent.  If you would like to receive information about next summer's classes, please let me know and I will be happy to place you on our email list.

My child has already taken coding classes elsewhere.  Can he take your JavaScript class even if he is not in 6th grade?
If your child is already familiar with the programming logic taught in our Scratch course, then yes, he or she may enroll directly into JavaScript.  In most cases however, younger students are better served taking the Scratch class.  It takes practice to develop coding skill, and most experienced students tell me that I've passed up their knowledge by the second Scratch class.


My child has already taken programming classes elsewhere.  Can he take your Unity class?
If your child has taken a scripted programming course in Junior High or High School (such as JavaScript, Java or Python), then he or she is welcome to enroll in our Unity course.  Most students however, would be better served by taking our JavaScript class before enrolling in Unity.  It takes practice to develop coding skill, and many experienced students have told me that I passed up their previous knowledge fairly quickly.


Is the Scratch class going to be too basic for my child?
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.

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.  


REGISTRATION:
 
Can my child enroll in multiple classes?
Yes.  Students may take several classes in sequence.  It's entirely possible to code all month.  Students who finish Scratch can proceed to JavaScript, and then onto Unity.
 
Do you offer a sibling discount?
Yes.  You will save 10% off a sibling's registration.  When paying with Paypal, simply select the total number of students you wish to enroll.  Please fill out a separate registration form for each student.
 
 
 
ABOUT THE TEACHER:
 
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: