There's a gap in education
While the government is beginning to recognise the importance of computational thinking, coding is still an optional part of the curriculum at primary school with many children never getting the chance to experience this new form of expression. By the time a child reaches secondary school age, their interests have already started to form. Sparking an interest in coding and technology has never been more relevant to their futures, but 2019 reports show the amount of computing education young people receive at secondary school is actually in "steep decline", as schools struggle to make the new material understandable or relatable.
Code should not be available just to the geeks or the maths boffins, as cool as we think they are, coding is a tool that every child can use to further and enhance all areas of life.
Coding can play a role in English, Maths, Science, the Creative Arts, Technology and more.
It's not just about syntax and code
Being able to write commands, telling your computer what to do, is one thing... but the skills you learn from being able to code will stay with you for life:
- Critical Thinking
- Maths and logic
- Processing skills
- Courage to try new things
These soft skills become a key part of growth; everything naturally picked up through coding can help children make decisions, open up career opportunities, and build resilience.
Overcoming gender and diversity barriers
The tech industry is struggling with decades-long ethnic, economic and gender diversity problems, with men holding the majority of technical roles. Products and services can and do suffer when half of our society is not being involved in their development, or shown their potential to solve problems. Girls are not exposed to technical exploration in their formative years and efforts to make computing appealing to them are rarely made as they continue to grow. With so many more male figureheads, inevitably, boys are more likely to get involved in coding and, at school, it becomes a "boy thing".
If you ask our girls, coding is just another challenging but immensely rewarding activity where they can try things out, express themselves, and produce cool new things inspired by everything that is important and interesting to them. The Code Zone is a comfortable and encouraging space where we can share our differences and celebrate ourselves as individuals full of potential and fun ideas.
The Code Zone is formed
Paul & Ashley built The Code Zone after setting up a club locally and realising that the coding skills gap in the UK is much bigger than originally anticipated.
The Code Zone is not about teaching individual lines of code and hoping they'll be useful. The Code Zone is here to instil the potential of code and kindle a love of creating with it. Using age-appropriate tools like Scratch, codable robots and discovery drones to, create engaging experiences that provide context for a topic that is often hard to get in to.
There is no "Hmm, but what should I do?" here! We support you through every part of your coding journey.