I’m inspired by the 4th and 5th grade girls in the picture above. They are driven, hardworking, and most importantly they advocate for themselves. At the beginning of the school year, I started coding clubs for students 1st-5th grade in the mornings from 7:30-7:55. I wanted to be sure to make the club accessible to ALL students so no matter if students arrive on a bus or in a car they are able to participate.
Each day a different grade comes to the MakerSpace to code and the groups change each 9 weeks. Students must apply to be a part of Coding Club and they must include why they are interested. I thought I was covering all my basis by having students bring their breakfast up to code and by making it accessible no matter how you arrive to school. What I didn’t realize though is that girls in 4th grade might be interested in learning how to code but are intimated to learn with boys. It never occurred to me that this might be the case… until some of the girls in this picture approached me one day at lunch.
They walked up to me and Allizon said, “Mrs. Grimes we want to learn how to code but boys are rough and always want to be first. Can you have a Coding Club just for girls?”. I smiled and my heart swelled. Here were 9 year old girls who knew what they wanted to learn and weren’t afraid to advocate for themselves. How could I not listen? I said, “You know I didn’t think of it that way but my afternoons are full. Would you girls be interested in a lunch bunch where we eat and code?? The girls literally jumped up and down and the HFE Girls Who Code Lunch Bunch was born!
I spoke with their teachers and worked out the schedule to have the Girls Who Code Lunch Bunch every Friday during their lunch block. I’m super excited to see what these girls can do. Not only in coding… but in life.