Earlier this year, Texas Instruments awarded Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Dallas with a $30,000 grant to fund our summer coding camp. Now known as the Texas Instruments Coding Camp, it encompasses curriculum developed and taught by University of Texas at Dallas instructors. Youth at each of the 8 Club locations participating in the program will take part in a week-long camp, teaching the basics of coding and how to build a mobile app. The curriculum was developed to be a hands-on programming experience that will stimulate each Club member’s curiosity and creativity, as well as their potential interest in pursuing computer science or engineering in school.
The one-week program will rotate through all of our 8 traditional Club sites (East Dallas, Mesquite, Oak Cliff, Grand Prairie, Richardson, Cedar Springs, Buckeye and Roseland), as well as 2 middle schools in Pleasant Grove– Florence and Comstock. This year we will offer the same beginning class on Alice and Scratch, but are adding an intermediate class using MIT Inventor to develop applications. Each class is offered as a half-day session (3 hrs) for one week in each Club location. The coding camp will be taught by University of Texas at Dallas graduate students to 160 middle school students enrolled in our summer camp.
The goal is to give these children exposure to coding in ways that may encourage them to continue their involvement. Pre and post attitudinal surveys will be conducted by staff at Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Dallas. Questions will measure knowledge gained, interest in participating in additional coding programs, interest in pursuing STEM classes in school, and interest in pursuing STEM as a career.