Computer science students educate with Hour of Code


Laura Smith

Charles Barfoot, junior and business information management (BIM) student helps a fourth grader navigate through the programs.

Fourth graders participated in the Hour of Code event which began Thursday, Dec. 5 and continued through Friday, Dec. 6 at the high school. Reeves-Hinger Elementary attended the program Thursday morning while Lakeview Elementary visited Friday morning.

The Hour of Code program introduces fourth graders to coding during National Computer Science Education Week, using programs aimed toward children. Students in computer classes such as business information and management (BIM) and computer science helped the fourth graders walk through the various activities.

This was Canyon High’s fifth time holding the Hour of Code event. 

“It started as a nation-wide event just to raise awareness about computer science in general,” computer science teacher Lance Culbert said. “One of the things the field noticed was that there wasn’t a lot of awareness about it. So they started this program and it just really took off.”

The program offers plenty of different programs for the fourth graders to try out.

Knowing the code that’s behind the blocks and the images that the kids are working with gives me a deeper understanding.”

— Josiah Kinsky, 1o

“It started off with a couple of little exercises,” Culbert said. “One of them was an Angry Bird program, and they have to tell the bird how to get to the pig. Now there’s literally dozens and dozens of programs that are all age appropriate that show them that they can do computer programs. Some of the stuff we go over with the fourth graders is stuff that I actually teach in a different language in my computer science classes. It’s cool that they’re having a chance to get exposed to it at a younger age.”

Josiah Kinsky, sophomore and computer science student participated in the event.

“The kids I was working with in my section were pretty good,” Kinsky said. “Besides some technical difficulties, I think all of the kids were behaving well. They were really interested in the material that was being taught to them.”

Kinsky said that being in a computer science class affected the way he saw the programs. 

“Having experience with Hour of Code in seventh or eighth grade, I didn’t actually know how to code at that point,” Kinsky said. “Doing it later and knowing the code that’s behind the blocks and the images that the kids are working with, gives me a deeper understanding on how the entire thing works. Before, you see the blocks and kind of go through it logically. Later on, you learn the process behind that, and understand it better so you can teach it better.”