- Title: Saudi children learn to code
- Date: 2nd August 2017
- Summary: RIYADH, SAUDI ARABIA (JULY 29, 2017) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF STUDENT CONTROLLING ROBOT ON GROUND
- Embargoed: 16th August 2017 11:15
- Keywords: Saudi coding school Riyadh after-school coding club young computers programmers Saudi Arabian children
- Location: RIYADH, SAUDI ARABIA
- City: RIYADH, SAUDI ARABIA
- Country: Saudi Arabia
- Topics: Education,Society/Social Issues
- Reuters ID: LVA0016SGOSWL
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: As demand for computer programmers is expected to grow, a Saudi after-school club is aiming to train the next generation of coders.
Children as young as 7-years-old can learn the fundamentals of coding at the Kcoderz club in capital Riyadh.
The club was founded by Saudi Arabian couple Abeer AlHashimi and Abdulrahman AlSufiany in 2016.
Kcoderz teaches children the fundamentals of computer programming, as well as communication skills, teamwork and design - all essential skills in the future technology workplace.
"Kcoderz is a Saudi initiative with a Saudi design and our team who present and train are Saudi Arabian also. We are working together to provide a new Saudi generation with advanced technical skills because this domain is very big and everywhere," said AlHashimi, a mother of three.
The idea for the school started when the couple wanted their daughters to learn how to code, believing that computer skills were essential for their children's careers.
AlSufiany has been programming since he was 9-years-old and AlHashimi studied computing and worked as a programmer in her early career.
Hoping to pass on their knowledge and passion to their children, they enrolled their eldest daughters on e-learning courses.
But they found that the course wasn't engaging for children or easy to understand so they set out to create their own curriculum.
And the young students here can enjoy building robots and apps during class.
"I come to Kcoderz to learn how to programme and debug programmes when something goes wrong. It is fun and challenging," said student Abdullah.
The programme is split into three levels from the basics of coding to learning essential business skills and how to commercialise and sell mobile apps and computer programmes.
"Our goal here at Kcoderz is to turn kids from technology users to creators of technology. The advantage of Kcoderz over other programmes is that our programme is sustainable and comprehensive, this is what has attracted parents. It begins with teaching children the basics of programming up until they can design their own websites and apps," said AlHashimi.
Classes take place after school, at weekends and during the summer holidays with 60 children completing the course so far.
Fees are paid monthly at 2000 riyals (530 USD) with all profits going back into the club to help grow the initiative and offer the course to even more young coders.
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