Logan Chauder is just eight years old. But this week, he found himself writing computer code while sitting at his dining room table — and programming a video game.
Like his classmates and most students around the world, Logan has found himself blocked from school by the Covid-19 virus, at home and looking for something to do. Enter the Nuclear Innovation Institute’s newly created Coding Academy.
“My son had a fantastic week learning to code thanks to NII Coding Academy,” says Melissa Chauder, Logan’s mother. “The instructors from NPX were very enthusiastic and engaging. He really enjoyed being able to answer questions and lead the class in the code that he chose to use.”
The free online classes were started by NII which partnered with Kincardine start-up NPX to deliver a fun, interactive program to students in the Grey Bruce Huron region. Created in response to the closure of schools, NII launched the Coding Academy on March 30, with over 100 students from grades 2 to 7 participating from home via Zoom.
Many more students are also accessing the class on their own time through the Academy’s Google Classroom site. The course includes fun homework activities, and students can share their progress and coding creations with each other during the classes. Students have described the class as “awesome” and as a “really fun and funny class”.
“It is incredibly rewarding to work with these kids and see how excited they are to learn to code and to have a platform to interact and share with each other,” says Phillip Craig, who hosts the classes from the NPX “studio” in Kincardine.
Craig is an Innovation Catalyst at NPX and an experienced public-school teacher. He is joined each day by a “computer expert” co-host who helps guide students through the coding activities. As the students develop their coding abilities, they work towards building their own video games and writing code for the Coding Academy’s robot.
Parents enjoy it as well.
“I registered my grade 2 & 3 learners in the NII Coding Academy and they have had nothing but positive things to say about it,” said local father Kevin Moogk. “The interactive learning environment is fun and a safe place to work. Both my kids love interacting with the instructor, Phillip. He makes learning coding so much fun!! I would strongly recommend this program for kids of all ages!”
Feedback has been overwhelmingly positive, with some students requesting the classes be extended from one to two hours in length.
“NII is thrilled by the response to the Coding Academy and we will be expanding the programming to extend learning opportunities to even more of our local students” said Bruce Wallace, NII’s CEO. “Learning foundational skills like coding is critical to working in a digital economy.”
NII and NPX are planning to run another session of the two-week intro to coding program for local students and expand it to include intermediate level coding courses and offerings for older students. To register for these free sessions visit www.nii.ca/coding-academy .
Registration for the next session is now open at www.nii.ca
About the Nuclear Innovation Institute
The Nuclear Innovation Institute (NII) is an independent, not-for-profit organization that provides a platform to accelerate innovation and the implementation of business relevant solutions for the nuclear industry.
NII’s goal is to shape a Canadian nuclear industry that embraces new thinking, new technologies and new lines of business that can drive the global shift to a low-carbon future. www.nuclearinnovationinstitute.ca
For further information, please contact: Nuclear Innovation Institute – Bruce Wallace, President firstname.lastname@example.org
About Nuclear Promise X
Nuclear Promise X is a Canadian start-up with a refreshing view on innovation. We integrate the latest emerging technology into nuclear plant operations, projects and processes. As a group of creative nuclear professionals, we build innovation in everything we do. NPX believes in nuclear energy, and we are doing our part to make it sustainable for decades to come. Visit us at www.npxinnovation.ca