Kids who know how to code learn problem solving, logic and how to be creative. They could eventually be great candidates for high-paying tech jobs. There are many organizations in the Bay Area that teach kids as young as kindergarteners to program computers and learn skills that will help them build and run websites, apps and video games.
Black Girls Code – This nonprofit group offers coding classes for girls of color ages 7-17 to encourage them to become innovators in science, technology, engineering and math fields, leaders in their communities and builders of their future. Call for details. 2323 Broadway, Oakland. 510-398-0880.
Breakout Mentors – It provides one-on-one, in-person coding mentors throughout the San Francisco Bay Area plus video conferences with students worldwide. Kids ages 8-15 are matched with a computer science student from Stanford, University of California at Berkeley or Santa Clara University by personality and interests. Call for prices. Website features helpful Bay Area events calendar, with many free events. 650-669-8789.
Camp Edmo – This nonprofit organization offers after-school classes and camps throughout the Bay Area. Courses include Game Design lab and other tech topics. Check website for details and prices. 877-993-6673.
Code for Fun – Offers a variety of programs for kids in kindergarten-12, including Little Programmers, Introduction to the Magical World of Computers, Hack High School, robotics leagues, camps and more. Classes offered in Fremont, Milpitas and Oakland.
Code With Us – Teaches more than 13 coding languages to students ages 5-18 in private and small group classes and camps. Students select the types of projects they want to create, from coding mobile apps to designing 3D prints to building robots and gadgets. Locations in Fremont, Campbell, Cupertino, Saratoga and Sunnyvale. 408-909-7717.
Girls Who Code – Girls in grades 3-12 learn programming and computer science. More than 150 sites in the Bay Area include public libraries, schools and community centers. FREE.
iD Tech Camps – For ages 7 to 17, these day camps teach kids to code a mobile app, design a video game, produce a viral video and more. Locations are in Berkeley, Concord, San Rafael, Livermore, Moraga, Palo Alto, San Francisco, San Jose, Santa Clara, Santa Rosa and Saratoga.
Silicon Valley 4 U – This organization offers after-school classes, in-house coding academy programs in Mill Valley, Hayward, Novato, Fremont, Los Gatos, Saratoga, San Jose, San Ramon, Pleasanton and Livermore. The group is led by Silicon Valley experts and students from Ivy League schools. 408-505-5499.
Tech Rocks! – This group offers weekly one-hour classes consisting of typing and a facilitated individual programming track specific to each student. Classes are in San Mateo and San Francisco with a San Jose location scheduled to open this month (Dec. 2018). The group also offers camps, game nights and birthday parties. 650-285-3610.
Museum of Art and Digital Entertainment Scratch Programming Class – Kids ages 9 and up can attend this class on Scratch. Saturdays. 10-11:30 a.m. FREE. 3400 Broadway, Oakland. 510-457-0211.
TriValley Coder Dojo – Kids from kindergarten through grade 12 learn at their own pace with self-guided materials. They can also develop leadership, teamwork and public speaking skills while getting support from mentors. Wednesdays. 6-8:30 p.m. FREE. Various locations in the East Bay (check website for details).
Street Code Academy – This organization provides high-quality tech education classes in hack (coding), hustle (entrepreneurship) and design (creativity) targeted for children of color. The goal is to equip a generation of under-represented leaders. FREE. 1195 Hamilton Court, Menlo Park. 650-485-1413.
Children’s Creativity Museum Tech Lab – Drop in for daily activities such as programming robots to navigate a maze or compose and play music. Each activity is designed to promote creative problem-solving in novice programmers. Wed.-Sun. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Included with admission: $12.95. 221 Fourth St. 415-820-3320.
Lisa Renner is the San Francisco/Peninsula/Marin calendar editor at Bay Area Parent.