DUNN — With his eyes glued to computer screen, fourth-grader Wilson Mayo had fun learning how the electronic device in his hand actually worked.
Fourth- and fifth-grade Academically or Intellectually Gifted (AIG) students from Midway Elementary School are now engaged in the Hour of Code program designed to introduce students to computer science and coding, which is used to create software, applications and websites.
“I like that you can code your own stuff and build your own games on it,” Mayo said Thursday afternoon.
The recent activity is part of Computer Science Education Week, which began Monday and continues through Sunday. During this time, the birthday of computing pioneer Grace Hooper is also recognized nationwide. A national committee overseeing the program consist of representatives from organizations and companies such as Amazon, Apple, Boys and Girls Club of America and Microsoft.
Tara Armwood, AIG specialist at Midway and Clement Elementary, led the initiative. She enjoys working with the program that offers lessons on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math), reading and social studies. During the week, all of the students at Clement Elementary School participated in the Hour of Code program.
“When you think about this 21st century, everything is technology based,” Armwood said.
Armwood said the technology lessons helps with other subject matters as well. Through the program, there’s different levels of coding, starting at the beginning level and going up to advanced. Students are now at the first level and received certificates for participating.
“It’s fascinating,” Armwood said about students being introduced to coding. “When you talk about job skills, if you’re good at computer programming, you can make money from it.”
Anna Lovitt and Evander Pope, fourth-graders from Midway Elementary, enjoyed learning more about computers.
“The more we learn, the more we get closer to becoming scientists, programming computers or making games,” Pope said.
Their classmates Kayla Raines and Connor Jackson shared the same feelings.
“I think it’s fun, but it’s also teaches you how to code,” Jackson said.
James Mullins, principal of Clement Elementary, also appreciates the Hour of Code program and its benefits to students.
“We live in a technology driven world and it’s been a great learning experience for all of our students,” Mullins said.