REAL STORIES
BY REAL PEOPLE Search
Friday, November 24, 2017

Fifth-Grade Students Get a Head Start in Tech

Credit: Erin Murtaugh
Students participating in an after school computer programming club.

Reading, writing and arithmetic are the essential skills attributed to a traditional education. As we progress through the 21st century, however, a new essential skill arises, computer programming.

Describing Felicisimo Andrion as a typical fifth grader may actually offend him. This is made evident by the Windsor knotted tie he wears to school every day. He sports a techie D.J. look - button up and untucked collared shirt, dark jeans, sneakers, and black rimmed rectangular glasses.

Video games and technology are always on his mind. Felicisimo dreams of becoming a computer engineer, but he doesn’t want to work for anyone. He wants to be his own boss, taking on clients who need his expertise to build software and hardware for their companies and projects.

He already has a head start. While Felicisimo didn’t know how to program computers last year, things are different now. He joined an after school club at Mark Fine Elementary School in Las Vegas, which teaches kids computer programming skills.

"Kids are interested in computers and how they work. They want to learn but there's no place to start," said Colin Baldwin, software engineer and club leader. "I've heard kids say that they want to make games and have no idea what to do. I was a kid who wanted to make games and had no idea what to do. Having access to a club and professional is invaluable."

“He knows what he is doing,” Andrion adds bluntly in support of having a professional engineer lead the club.

Then he says he is impressed with Baldwin for being a paid software engineer. He also likes the fast paced learning style, which allows him to learn more in less time.

That isn’t to say that it is all serious. Baldwin "doesn't get upset when there is a failure in the coding." They have fun working through the challenges together.

Even more interesting, the club attracts students who do not dream of becoming computer engineers like Felicisimo. Technology is entertaining, as well as a path to many careers.

"People think that computer programmers are software engineers,” said Micah Lambeth, aero noise and propulsion lab test engineer at Boeing. “I don't work with software engineers, but everyone I work with has to be able to write code for their own software. You can't be an engineer without computer programming skills."

According to Lambeth, computer programming could be considered a basic skill for success, especially for anyone with a desire to work in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields.

Baldwin agrees, “In other professions they will have extra tools in their boxes to think logically and will know how to use computers in a powerful way.” He adds, the kids who want to be professional programmers have opportunities to be the top in the field.

Surprisingly, computer programming skills are not readily taught in schools nor part of the basic education requirement. The only opportunity a student may have to learn computer programming is at an after school club.

“Since I want to be a computer engineer, I can say I’ve done code for most of my life,” said Andrion.

At only 11-years old, he is steadily working toward his career goals. Along with him, other young people seek the same opportunities to learn computer programming and gain an edge over peers in college and in the workforce.

The after school program is developed and provided by a nonprofit organization called Experts, Teachers, Children. The organization pairs teachers with experts in STEM fields so that they can create after school programs that benefit children. For more information, visit expertsteacherschildren.com.

Author Erin Murtaugh is a founding partner of ETC.



About the Writer

Erin Murtaugh is a writer for BrooWaha. For more information, visit the writer's website.
Want to write articles too? Sign up & become a writer!

10 comments on Fifth-Grade Students Get a Head Start in Tech

Log In To Vote   Score: 0
By B. murtaugh on May 20, 2014 at 04:10 pm

Great article and thank you for everyone's time, expertise, and effort.

 Report abuse

Log In To Vote   Score: 0
By Melania88 on July 21, 2014 at 01:42 am

I just think is so great programy dla firm

 Report abuse

Log In To Vote   Score: 0
By franklin on July 21, 2014 at 02:49 am

Graduation is the most successful key to go towards higher side of career in any field. write my assignments

 Report abuse

Log In To Vote   Score: 0
By Shirleydevis on November 12, 2014 at 01:41 am
When you are getting online education, being this close to the online world makes it easy for you to get your homework assignment done for cash from Myassignmentservice.com when you need to save time!
 Report abuse

Log In To Vote   Score: -1
By Pualette Dodson on February 20, 2015 at 02:32 am

well i beleive its really great

<a href="http://www.bestassignmenthelp.co.uk/do-my-assignment.php">write me an assignment</a>

 Report abuse

Log In To Vote   Score: 1
By kate john on March 29, 2015 at 05:24 am

computer programming is very important in these days as computer is every where in these days. nice article essay writing service

 Report abuse

Log In To Vote   Score: 1
By david joe on March 29, 2015 at 05:27 am

great article on impotance of programming. new generation can use programming in a better way to reduce people efforts. write my essay

 Report abuse

Log In To Vote   Score: 0
By Ism Help on August 20, 2015 at 01:48 am

This is really great work. Thank you for sharing such a useful information here in the blog for students. Grolsch: Growing Globally Case Solution

 Report abuse

Log In To Vote   Score: 0
By Emil Suddeth on September 21, 2015 at 07:31 am

Nice and informative post. homework help australia

 Report abuse

Log In To Vote   Score: 0
By janice rick on October 29, 2015 at 01:44 am

The fifth grade kid is doing really awesome work, keep motivating him and stand by his side. Scholarship Essay Writing for your writing assistnat.

 Report abuse



Add A Comment!

Click here to signup or login.


Rate This Article


Your vote matters to us



x


x