At the beginning of each computer programming lab, we remind our students of the three informal rules of participating in Start Code.
- We work hands-on. We do no simply talk about programming, technology, or lofty Computer Science concepts. We learn by doing. By using our laptops, phones, and tablets as tools for creation instead of merely consumption, the future opens up with new possibilities.
- We will make mistakes. We will make a lot of mistakes. Making mistakes is inevitable in computer programming and that's OK. Through trial and error often something surprising happens and we make new discoveries. With the right attitude, failure equals learning.
- We help each other. We work together with our classmates and share what we have learned. If a neighbor is getting stuck or frustrated, we help them out. And if a student does something cool, we all want to see it. Let's have fun together.
By keeping these three simple rules in mind, we hope to create an environment that is gives students the confidence to be fearless and try new things in the labs. Innovation requires trial and error and we hope to foster that attitude in our students. Whether in middle school or high school, the willingness to make mistakes and get back up to try something new will serve our students well.