At the Codemakers Camp, campers were able to see how coding and software are used in creating virtual reality simulators.
Codemakers is a three-day camp offered by WISE Kid-Netic Energy through the University of Manitoba, which took place at Ecole Morden Middle School from July 24 to 28. It’s an introduction to computer coding for youth in Grades 7 to 9 with the aim of teaching the fundamentals of software coding and experiencing the building blocks of hardware.
Campers got the opportunity to work with Snap Circuits, Dash robots, littleBits, Arduinos, and Lego Mindstorms to test their new skills to escape a simulated Zombie Apocalypse.
“This is the first time we’ve done [Codemakers Camp] in a rural location,” Jill Lautenschlager, Program Administrator for WISE Kid-Netic Energy, said. “We’ve ran it on campus at the [University of Manitoba] but for all girls. So we thought we’d try it on the road and Morden has always been very receptive, and there was a computer lab that was up and running that we were able to get access to.”
Lautenschlager said enrollment numbers were low but that low number was anticipated as it was their first time offering the program and that seems to be what happens whenever they run a new camp.
“We’ll try to continue to offer both camps [Energy Science & Engineering Camp and Codemakers Camp] and we hope that word gets out and more girls will sign up,” Lautenschlager said. “Most people are starting to understand that [coding] is an important skill to have in almost whatever field you end up in.”
There was a Ph.D student in the field of Bio-Medical Engineering who came out from Winnipeg to speak to the kids.
“He does research in detecting Alzheimer’s in people through virtual reality technology,” Lautenschlager said. “He was able to talk to the campers about the coding behind those programs.”
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