I remember so looking forward to summer vacation as a child, enjoying it for about a week, and then inevitably driving my mom crazy with lamentations of “I’m BORED” for the next six weeks. As a result, I ended up doing many summer camps over the years, ensuring that I never had a chance to be bored (at least not for long). Summer programming camps weren’t offered, or we weren’t aware of them, when I was young, but today’s students have a plethora of options to help them jump in feet-first to new coding adventures.
Coding camps and summer-long programs now exist for students from middle school through college. The length of the program and focus vary according to the age group, from week-long day camps for middle schoolers to summer-long, self directed open source programs for college students. Many universities conduct programming camps, such as IU’s Game Development Camp for high schoolers in July. During that camp, students will examine various games to determine the elements that make for an engaging experience, design their own game, and then code it from the ground up. The camp will provide valuable hands-on experience and hopefully instill a lifelong love of coding!
While IU’s Game Development Camp doesn’t require any previous coding experience, applicants to Google’s Summer of Code take on a major three month project to contribute to an open source project and receive a stipend from Google. Students propose their own projects, and then are paired with a mentor who already knows the ins and outs of the particular open source product they will work on. This is a great in-depth way to improve coding skills over the summer.
If you’re a student looking to learn to code this summer, check with organizations (colleges, universities, tech groups) in your area to see if anyone is sponsoring programming camps. InternalDrive’s iD Tech Camps run in many areas and all through the summer. Network with other locals on Twitter and Facebook, too; Squad is providing coding support for a small local Geek Camp run by a few families, so you never know where you might find an opportunity!
Are you going to brush up on your coding skills this summer? Give us a shout @weCodeTogether and let us know your plans!