A first look at code

Nothing feels more rewarding than the spark in the kids’ eyes when they see their imagination take a concrete form, when they have their ‘Aha!’ moments, when something clicks and everything begins to make sense! And we were fortunate enough to see plenty of such moments during our first Android App Design Expedition, which concluded last weekend.

It all began with a brainstorming session full of creative ideas flowing freely and each participant shortlisting an idea for their app. We strongly believe in giving kids the freedom to explore and express themselves in a way they choose. So, having a pre-defined curriculum with everyone following the same content is a big no for us.

This approach makes the sessions so much more interactive and dynamic, with everyone learning the same basic principles but pursuing their own unique idea, and as the expedition progressed, making their own mistakes, and recovering from them on their own or with the help of others. It also ensures that there is no “teacher” one-sidedly lecturing the “students”. Instead, there is a constant exchange of ideas, self-exploration and discussion, and a lot of learning driven by the participants themselves – a lifelong skill that is becoming increasingly relevant in today’s fast-changing world.

Even for kids from the current generation who start using technology in some basic form soon after they are born, knowing the difference between the user interface of an app and what drives the app comes as a revelation – something that was logical but they had never thought about. This is an important step towards ensuring that the young generation does not simply remain a passive user of technology but becomes its active creator too.

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