Computer Programming, Coding, 3D Printing, Animation, Video Game Design, Building in Minecraft, Scratch, Python, Java and Graphic Design Classes Begin in Westchester County on January 21, 2017

Let’s face it — kids can take a Scratch Programming class in many different places throughout Westchester County, or do the Hour of Code from home. There are a million and one ways to learn about 3D printing, computer programming or animation. You get the picture… And so do we.

But there’s the thing: experience. Meaningful learning is all about the experience. Knowledge retention happens when a person can put emotion behind the skills they learn.

Think about driving. Someone can show you or tell you how to drive all day long while you’re in the passenger’s seat, but until you get in the driver’s seat, get your hands on the wheel, put on your blinker, run over a few curbs and get pulled over for speeding, you really don’t learn very much. (We don’t encourage speeding, by the way! It was a metaphor…)

At the DAE, students drive. They get their hands on the tech. They try to go too fast and run into problems. We teach our kids about failure and how not to panic when something goes wrong — about how glitches are good because they teach us what we need to fix. We encourage thoughtfulness and problem solving, discussion and thinking outside the box.

Our world is so fast. It’s easy to throw information at people (especially kids) and expect them to get it. (Those kids with their iPads just know how to do all the things!) Classes at the DAE are different. They’re inclusive. They’re project-based. And they’re fun! We invite you to visit us and find out why.

Winter classes begin this weekend! January 21, 2017.

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Call us: 914-644-8100

Computer Science Education Week Dec. 9th – 15th : The Hour of Code 2013!

Computer Science Education Week Dec. 9th – 15th : The Hour of Code 2013!

At The Digital Arts Experience in White Plains, NY, we are proud to offer computer programming and coding classes after school, on weekends and summer break for kids and teens. With December 9th – 15th, 2013 being “Computer Science Education Week”, we wanted to highlight the importance of the initiative as well as raise awareness in the Westchester community.

There is currently a plethora of social media coverage and support this week and the goal is to get more educators and schools involved. Not only is learning code an incredibly valuable skill, but it’s actually fun and not that difficult to learn!

According to Computer Science Education Week:

  • Computer science is a top paying college degree and computer programming jobs are growing at 2X the national average

  • Exposure to CS leads to some of the best-paying jobs in the world. But 75% of our population is underrepresented

  • 9 out of 10 schools don’t offer computer programming classes

“We need young Americans like you to master the tools and technology that will change the way we do just about everything,” he said in his video. “Don’t just buy a new video game, make one. Don’t just download the latest app, help design it. Don’t just play on your phone, program it.” – President Obama, calling on U.S. students to learn code.

We implore you to check out and learn an #HourOfCode! Take the challenge and find out for yourself that anybody can learn. Tweet your progress at @Codeorg and join the conversation with thousands of others!

In the same breath, we are very excited to announce that we have opened up even more computer programming classes for younger kids and teens. Starting in January 2014, we will be running Game Programming with Scratch classes for kids as young as 7.

Additionally, we will offering more coding classes in Processing, Java, and HTML for kids ages 9 and up. Check out what classes we will be offering and encourage your kid and their friends to get on board and take the initiative to learn code!

Our classes are small sized, 100% hands on, goal oriented, and designed to give real world exposure. Set up a class for your kids and their friends today! Give us a call at (914) 644-8100 or e-mail to get you started!

Coding Class: Learning the Language of the Future in Westchester County

by Megan Johnson, intern

If you don’t know anything about coding, you could be missing out on being fluent in what the New York Times calls “the language du jour”.

Anthony Edwards and Michelle Meyrink in "Revenge of the Nerds" (1984).

Anthony Edwards and Michelle Meyrink in “Revenge of the Nerds” (1984) – “The computer’s your friend.”

For years, computer programming has had an uncool reputation, bringing to mind images of Revenge of the Nerds (see above picture). Depictions like this made programming seem like it was just for “nerds,” and wasn’t worth learning. But Gilbert (Anthony Edwards) in the above scene says to Judy (Michelle Meyrink):

“Some people, they can create with their hands, but when you’re working with a computer, you gotta build something with your mind. If you’re good, you can do something no one’s ever seen before. It’s a definite high.”

According to USA Today, one MIT student acknowledges this “nerdy” computer programmer stereotype such as the one in Revenge of the Nerds is just not true anymore in the MIT student body and “[students] can make all these things that society values. That, right there, is making the typical geek cool.”

Among today’s students, there will be a new Mark Zuckerberg, creating the next hottest social network, or a new Steve Jobs, inventing sleek and unique tech that has 1,417 people lined up early in the morning. More importantly, there will be new names, new faces, new jobs, new opportunities for today’s generation.

A New York Times article published last year explains the recent need and desire to learn the language of coding:

[People’s] jobs now require being able to customize a blog’s design or care for and feed an online database. “Inasmuch as you need to know how to read English, you need to have some understanding of the code that builds the Web”…

“People have a genuine desire to understand the world we now live in,” said Zach Sims, one of the founders of Codecademy. “They don’t just want to use the Web; they want to understand how it works.”

There is an urge now to harness the knowledge that has been so exclusive to computer programmers for years and learn how this technology we use every day works from the very basics of Java, HTML and CSS. It’s a transition from a more passive acceptance that this amazing content is generated every day to an active pursuit of figuring out how that data generation occurs.

Perhaps this explains the popularity of the computer science major these days. The passive-to-active transition is reflected in the Computing Research Association‘s 2011-2012 report through the steadily increasing number of computer science majors over the past five years, particularly the increase of 29.2% between 2011 and 2012. Furthermore, the Department of Labor reports that computer programming jobs are growing at a rate of 12% from 2010-2020 and paying an average annual salary of $71,380. Students who seek to learn computer programming or just how to code will be positioning themselves as more competitive professionally by acquiring these advanced skills.

Computer programming is an industry of growth, so it’s about time we learn to speak its language. The Atlantic Wire explains six different reasons a non-programmer should learn coding, including that it’s fun, it teaches other skills and can be useful to know just as another tool. For our students, we offer Game Programming with Java because we believe that it’s important to expose them to the language of computer code when they’re young so they can get the chance to pursue a new hobby or just acquire a useful skill for their futures.

Whether you learn just enough to say you know it or pursue it as a career, there is value, as the New York Times article states, in learning code.