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Can coding really change the world?

Spoiler alert - it can! All the technology-based innovations around us like the computers we are sitting at to connect and communicate are possible because many people wrote the code.

If technological advancement is so rapid and so integral to our society, why is it that the study in the field of computer science (CS) has not been keeping pace?  And by not keeping pace, I’m not just talking about the overall numbers studying CS being a mere trickle in the higher education pipeline, I’m talking about an epic failure to engage women and minorities in this field.

Over the years, I have introduced students to coding using Scratch with the goal of letting them get a peek “under the hood” of technology. I want students to understand it’s not magic that makes this technology stuff work.  Recently, I collaborated with Allison Starks at Computers4Kids to hold a Video Game Design Challenge workshop on Saturday mornings.  Not only did we get great response, but the kids kept coming back and wanting more time.  Through this experience, we saw students teach each other, experiment, collaborate, make mistakes and figure out alternate solutions. Doing something they clearly enjoyed, they were also learning skills that that will prepare them to be the change they want to see in the world.


  • What is computer science?
  • Why should I care about a crisis in CS education?
  • How do you reach girls?
  • I’m not a programmer!
  • Real-world experience:  The National STEM Video Game Design Challenge
  • Benefits for all: collaboration, problem solving, iterative design, overcoming obstacles, engagement, following the child
  • TechKim’s Super Secret mission: I don't expect everyone will want to grow up to be a computer scientist, I just want anyone to know they can.