Mentor registrations for the 2016 CoderDojo program are now open.
Meet Chermside Library’s Lead Mentor, Alex Jacobs, who talks about the highlights of being involved with CoderDojo this year.
Your history with the program
It’s almost two years since I joined CoderDojo as a mentor. My introduction to CoderDojo was by my former colleague who was lead mentor at Sunnybank Hills Library, and I became mentor at Brisbane Square Library. There was an opening for a lead mentor role in the Chermside Library and I have been lead mentor at Chermside since.
Highlights of the program
We try to make coding fun for kids, make sure they learn principles of programming as well as team work. Considering we don’t have a solid curriculum, what we teach kids totally depends on mentors’ skills. As a lead mentor I’m looking forward to seeing mentors from different parts of the IT industry sharing part of what they know with kids each term.
Having presentations at the end of each session, ninjas will show the rest of the class what they have done during the session. This will boost their confidence to be able to speak to large audiences as well as sharing ideas with follow ninjas.
Benefits of being a mentor
Apart from joining a large community of developers, you will learn about different technologies and platforms.
I was always interested in robotics, and we came up with the idea of a rover which can be controlled from a web page in one of our sessions. I had the opportunity to build it and now we present it each term to kids showing them one of the many ways we can use programming skills.
Your favourite memory/experience as a mentor in the program
It’s really hard to pick one – to me every moment of every session is a good memory. But one of the highlights was having one of our previous ninjas as a youth mentor on Term 4 this year.
Mathew was one of the ninjas on my first term as lead mentor. Seeing how much he has learned since is one of the best achievements I’ve had as a mentor.
What do you think kids get of the program/the skills they gain from participating in the program?
Through this course we teach kids different computer skills; from programming to creating and styling a web page, even making games. I can say we are involved in training and mentoring the next generation of IT industry people.
Think you've got what it takes to be a CoderDojo mentor in 2016? Find out more here or register now.
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