This post is sponsored, but the opinions are 100% our own.
My daughters love all things girly. Gymnastics, playing house, and getting their toes painted. Therefore, I was a little apprehensive when I was asked if my girls wanted to attend a trial class at MVCode. Did they want to? Maybe not. Did I encourage them? Absolutely!
Why did I encourage them? MVCode teaches an introduction to coding, game development, web development and robotics – to kids! We know as parents raising children in this generation, these skills are essential as our kids’ progress through their school years. It all sounds a little intimidating quite frankly. What we learned firsthand was MVCode has a unique formula for breaking down the mystery of coding to children, of both genders.
First off, the space at the Redwood City location was bright, open and inviting. The staff were very welcoming and friendly to my daughters right in the door. The fear factor quickly dwindled when Derrick, the Club Director, knew each girl’s name and began showing them to their computer for the day. They immediately felt empowered and independent!
The lay of the land is simple; up to date computers with large screens and cool chairs spaced close enough to evoke a social environment but with enough elbow room to allow each child his or her own and privacy if they are developing the latest and greatest game in Java Script! Curriculum here is project based and therefore, student to teacher ratios are low. On the day we attended our trial class, which was a Saturday, we had one instructor helping my two daughters.
The girls were guided by their instructor to log into their own account and begin their course assignment for the day. My younger daughter started a course in Scratch. My older daughter’s course taught introductory basics of Java Script and was developed by MVCode for MVCode Club students. Very cool! Both had step by step instructions that allowed the girls to build their own code and then run it to see their program in action. It was quite rewarding and instantly addictive. The easy-to-follow instructions gave an introduction without being overwhelming or by giving too much information. The results were small but mighty enough to encourage them to keep working through each step, which produced functionality to keep the course fun and stimulating.
They didn’t want to stop at the end of the hour and begged to come back! That was even before their instructor outlined the point system they have and the corresponding toys/rewards they can earn. Being rewarded while covertly learning problem solving, math and other beneficial skills? It’s a win/ win! Plus, I believe the girls will remain even more engaged over repeat visits when attending one of the MVCode “all girls” courses.
MVCode Clubs exist in 4 different Bay Area locations including the original location in Mill Valley, Greenbrae, San Francisco, Redwood City and 1 additional pop-up location in Albany. Fall courses are starting now and continue through June 2018 with classes Monday through Friday and open lab on Saturdays.
Pictures courtesy of Laura S.
Laura is a former consultant for Deloitte in their technology practice who is now a full-time mom living in Menlo Park with her husband and three young daughters, Peyton age 9, Charlotte age 7, and Whitney age 3. She graduated from Indiana University with a BS in Business and Computer Information Systems. She met her husband, Hudson, while working in Chicago after college, which is where they started their life adventures together. After Chicago, they moved to Dallas, then Sydney Australia for almost 1 year and then to Los Altos followed by Menlo Park, where they call home today. Lately, most adventures involve school volunteering, extracurricular activities with the girls, and spending time with friends. The family also enjoys skiing together in Tahoe in the winters and swimming and biking together in the summer.