In a world that is becoming dependent on technology, it seems more important than ever to teach the next generation to learn the ins and outs of technology, and a company called Code Ninjas does just that.
Code Ninjas is a company and education center designed to provide kids from the age of seven to the age of 14 with a program to learn more about coding and computers. Founded in 2016, the game-based curriculum and welcoming environment will help parents see tangible results in their kids’ coding and education.
Code Ninjas has 264 centers in 32 states and opened a center in Scottsdale in May of this year. Jason Sym, managing director and franchise owner of Code Ninjas Scottsdale, thought the Valley needed something like Code Ninjas.
“I learned that there wasn’t a Code Ninjas in the Greater Phoenix area and wanted to change that. After getting some parents’ opinions on the idea of opening, I decided to bring Code Ninjas to the Valley,” Sym said.
Code Ninjas is a helping hand for parents who want to further their children’s education in a structured but fun and safe environment.
“Unlike other coding programs, Code Ninjas’ goal is to create a great programmer, and a great programmer is a programmer with exceptional logic thinking skills. We want to make sure that when a kid finishes the program, they can leave the dojo (student area) with logic, math and teamwork skills,” Sym said.
The primary program for Code Ninjas is a drop-in for an hour between 3 and 7 p.m. Monday through Friday. But the program also offers camps and “parents’ night out” programs, so parents can have some time to themselves.
“Ninjas come into our center twice a week, an hour each time. They wear wristbands that grant access to the dojo and track their time. They work on the game-building curriculum and senseis (teachers) are there to help and guide them. After an hour of coding, they get some free time to hang out, make friends, and play with STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) activities such as snap circuit and mBots,” Sym said.
At Code Ninjas, the kids work up a karate-style curriculum based on nine belts, from white belt – where they will learn basic problem-solving concepts – to black belt, where they will be able to write their own apps.
“We have a nine-belt proprietary curriculum blend designed and updated by a team of professional computer programmers. Within each belt is a set of skills and at the end of each belt, students have to show those learned skills by building games that require them. Each belt works with the other and builds off each other so they are practicing those skills consistently,” Sym said.
With the advancement of technology, it is becoming important to the parents of the next generation to learn about technology from the very core of it.
“Coding has been called the ‘literacy of the 21st century’ for a good reason,” Sym said. “Just like math, science, and literature, coding is a key aspect of understanding our technologically advanced world. There’s a huge need for a generation that not only understands technology but how it works, regardless of whether your kids one day pursue a career in coding. Code Ninjas teaches them confidence, logic, resourcefulness, and problem-solving skills that will serve them for the rest of their lives.”
Sym wants to help create an environment that will be safe and comfortable for students, and with the structure of the curriculum at Code Ninjas, it seems to be working.
Sym says people shouldn’t be afraid of the coding language, as it is becoming a part of our everyday lives, and they should want to learn it because of that reason.
“The computer language may be a ‘foreign language’ for a lot of people now, but in years to come, it will be general knowledge within society. Everything we use now is related to coding. Everything around us requires code to function,” Sym said. “Don’t let the word ‘coding’ scare you. It is challenging but fun, learning to code is an investment in your future, you will see a tremendous return!”
For more information on how to sign up, visit codeninjas.com.