The Hour Of Code Challenge Starts Next Week

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The Hour of Code is designed to expose kids of all ages and backgrounds to coding (Credit: Code.org)

With much of our world automated, many experts believe that coding should be a core part of modern education. Yet, only 20 US states offer high school students access to computer science courses, and just 8 of those make the subject accessible to kids in lower grades. However, thanks to Seattle-based Code.org's Hour of Code Challenge, learners of all ages and backgrounds can now get exposure to this all-important subject.

The Hour of Code includes fun programming challenges for every age (Credit: Code.org)

Now in its eighth year, the event, offered annually during Computer Science Education Week (December 7th - 13th, 2020), attracts over 100 million participants across 180 countries. The hour-long coding activities, created with help from over 400 partners, including Google, Microsoft, and Khan Academy, are offered in 45 different languages. Suitable for all ages — from 4 to 104 — and experience levels, they are designed to demystify the world of coding and inspire students of all backgrounds to consider a career in software engineering. Though school sessions are usually restricted to sixty minutes, individuals can pursue longer coding challenges and tackle as many of the offerings as they wish on their own time.

Students can select their coding project based on their age, interest level, and programming prowess. Among this year's offerings is A Minecraft Tale of Two Villages. Created by the popular video game's programmers, it is designed to raise awareness of unconscious bias by bringing together two villages with the power of code. The developers state, “[We hope] coders will experience compassion for their neighbors, learn about cooperation and equity, and embrace the diversity that makes us all uniquely special."

Kids will also be able to select COVID-19-centric games involving coding social distance procedures, as well as program their own superhero. With over 200 projects to choose from, there is something to interest programmers of all ages and coding skills.

Once introduced to the subject, a majority of students enjoy computer science (Credit: Code.org)

While 60 minutes is enough time to get students intrigued about the subject, it is inadequate to master programming. To enable them to continue, Code.org offers ongoing computer science tutorials for students and professional learning for teachers. Since 2013, the non-profit has trained over 200,000 educators across grades K-12. In 2018, more than 19,000 Code.org students signed up for and passed the Advanced Placement Computer Science Principles examination.

Though the progress is encouraging, there is still a lot that needs to be done, especially given that most future jobs will require some programming knowledge. To learn how you and your school can get involved with the Hour of Code and the future of computer science, check out hourofcode.com.

Resources: Hourofcode.com

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254 Comments
  • b1ng0
    b1ng0Tuesday, January 12, 2021 at 9:20 am
    I love coding!
    • mintbookworm
      mintbookwormThursday, January 7, 2021 at 7:53 pm
      I loooooooooooooooooove coding (💖👩🏻‍💻)! Do any of you use Scratch, Java Script or Python?
      • tonyynot
        tonyynotTuesday, February 2, 2021 at 6:29 am
        i do scratch and code.org
        • jay60
          jay60Friday, January 22, 2021 at 10:50 am
          I use Scratch, and rarely JavaScript.
          • 5000unicorns
            5000unicornsFriday, January 22, 2021 at 10:02 am
            i use scrach and python i think
            • pangjang
              pangjangThursday, January 21, 2021 at 4:50 pm
              My cousin uses python
              • thedarkcandle
                thedarkcandleThursday, January 21, 2021 at 6:57 am
                Scratch but I want to learn python
                • ilovetacoslol
                  ilovetacoslolSaturday, January 9, 2021 at 10:01 am
                  Coding is amazing!✨👩‍💻😋
                  • cool_dogs
                    cool_dogsFriday, January 8, 2021 at 6:54 am
                    Nope... but I use swift!
                  • littleartist
                    littleartistTuesday, January 5, 2021 at 10:18 am
                    I did this in 1st grade!
                    • littleartist
                      littleartistTuesday, January 5, 2021 at 10:08 am
                      Neat! I used that in 1st grade!
                      • optuke
                        optukeMonday, January 4, 2021 at 8:07 am
                        COOL!
                        • flexy-123456789
                          flexy-123456789Tuesday, December 22, 2020 at 7:09 pm
                          I think it's awsome.
                          • devillady2010
                            devillady2010Saturday, January 2, 2021 at 1:10 am
                            Yea that game is cool, maybe that game is just really really famous.......!!!!???
                          • kittypowerrosie
                            kittypowerrosieSaturday, December 19, 2020 at 5:23 am
                            I've done hour of code at my school it's pretty fun but not as fun as roblox lol XD
                            • artgirl2
                              artgirl2Saturday, January 9, 2021 at 6:35 am
                              I like Minecraft and world of cubes they are basically the same thing lol
                              • mintbookworm
                                mintbookwormThursday, January 7, 2021 at 7:54 pm
                                What you're favourite game on roblox?
                                • destroyergaba
                                  destroyergabaTuesday, December 22, 2020 at 6:53 am
                                  i love roblox
                                  • b1ng0
                                    b1ng0Tuesday, January 12, 2021 at 9:21 am
                                    Me too
                                    • mintbookworm
                                      mintbookwormThursday, January 7, 2021 at 7:55 pm
                                      Me too! Just wish I could play it more often.
                                  • jotaro
                                    jotaroTuesday, December 15, 2020 at 8:28 am
                                    Minecraft is one of my fav games
                                    • zywuhelucidi
                                      zywuhelucidiTuesday, December 15, 2020 at 5:42 am
                                      We do coding at my school to and Minecraft is my favorite game to.
                                      • devillady2010
                                        devillady2010Saturday, January 2, 2021 at 1:07 am
                                        Yea my school does that too. And I like the Minecraft one as well!
                                      • kittyloverjam
                                        kittyloverjamMonday, December 14, 2020 at 9:18 am
                                        I LOVE Minercraft it's one of my favorite video games!!!
                                        • devillady2010
                                          devillady2010Saturday, January 2, 2021 at 1:14 am
                                          I really like the music in the game Minecraft. The music is like mysterious and soft ..........
                                        • devillady2010
                                          devillady2010Saturday, January 2, 2021 at 1:12 am
                                          I L-O-V-E MINECRAFT. When I first played the game I loved it so much!
                                          • artgirl2
                                            artgirl2Saturday, January 9, 2021 at 6:36 am
                                            Same I luv it
                                            • captiancool234
                                              captiancool234Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 1:42 pm
                                              Me too! 😁😀