May 5, 2018 2:40 pm

Canada Learning Code provides tech opportunities nationwide

Canada Learning Code aims to teach Canadians how to use technology creatively.

Global News
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A national charity aims to empower Canadians through code. Canada Learning Code travels the country and holds events to teach people how to use code in many unexpected ways.

“[We’re] really on a mission to empower Canadians to build and not just consume technology,” co-founder and CEO Melissa Sariffodeen told the Alberta Morning News. “And to be able to use technology for whatever personal or professional goal you might want to use it for.”

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Events include the upcoming Girls Learning Code Day on May 12th. It targets girls specifically, as they are traditionally more left out of the technology sector. The theme of the event will be using coding to address the declining bee population — using real world examples as a strategy to increase the kids’ motivation to learn.

READ MORE: The value of teaching kids coding

“What is the purpose? Why am I learning this? What problem am I going to be able to solve, how can I make the world a better place?” Sariffodeen said.

“And by doing that while teaching these skills, it provides the context that makes it fun, and makes it meaningful to them.”

Girls Learning Code Day comes on the heels of a workshop held recently at the Telus World of Science. Sariffodeen said the turnout was high, and so were spirits of the participants.

“It was a great opportunity for people visiting the centre to tinker and explore, and see the power technology has to create and be creative,” she said.

Canada Learning Code looks to reach as many Canadians as possible, so whenever a full event is not possible they hit the road to teach code.

WATCH: Should computer coding be mandatory learning in schools?

“We have a computer lab on wheels — actually a few of them,” Sariffodeen said. “We’re driving across the country teaching kids and teachers for free through our Codemobile initiative.”

“You can request it to come to your class, your library, community centre — you name it, and we’ll run a free coding workshop.”

The Codemobiles come equipped with laptops, robotics kits and other supplies to engage kids, parents and teachers in coding. There are also “unplugged activities”, which don’t require any hardware and teach coding theory.

You can register for Girls Learning Code Day, book a workshop, or find other events at the charity’s website.

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