Greeting, Introduce ourselves and our names. “We make a visual programming language to teach kids to code”
Jocelyn: anecdote about lego mindstorms vs pink purses. “We knew we had to build a toy that could appeal to girls too”
Jocelyn: Here’s what we’re going to talk about tonight.
Jocelyn: - literacy used to be reading, now that’s enough. - everything is code, point out devices in the room that are controlled by software? - 10 years ago people thought they had to teach their kids spanish or mandarin, now it’s code.
Jocelyn: - Computer Science is making its way into the curriculum - UK + other counties have mandated Computer Science education for all school kids 1st grade onwards. - NYC is piloting mandatory computer science education for middle and high school students - President Obama pledged 3.1 billion to improving STEM education in the US. In his state of the union address he issued a call to better equip graduates for the high tech economy.
Sam: - when you know how to program you can create anything. - This app is just for me and my roommate to split our household bills. - I also made an app that enters all my friends in the online lottery to win tickets to shakespeare in the park - another app creates a gym schedule with only yoga classes in my neighborhood. Next we’re gonna show you a video from Code.org
Sam: - coding is really scary and intimidating - get one little parenthesis wrong and your program won’t run - kids are really bad at typing
Sam: - Our visual programming language eliminates the need for syntax. You can just drag and drop blocks of code. - You’ll never get scary error messages.
Sam: - There are thousands of programming languages with different syntaxes - But once you know the basic constructs of computer science you can use them in any language - Loops, variables, branching logic etc.
Sam: - We built Hopscotch for tablet devices - Drag-and-drop is really tedious on the desktop but it’s fun on tablets - Kids love iPads, #1 most requested toy last Xmas - Growth is huge, 47% growth since 2012. Expected that 54% of online Americans will have a tablet by 2014.
Jocelyn: - I used to be a teacher and I found that project-based learning was really effective - Kids feel very empowered when they create something through code - Huge desire to show off what they made.