DECLICK 14s: a fun way for middle school students to learn how to code

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The challenge

Children under 15 are, paradoxically, increasingly connected without having access to the technology behind the tools they use. This is even truer for children in low-income neighbourhoods.
 
Teaching children about technology, a major issue in education today, helps prevent them from losing interest and dropping out of school as teenagers, encourages them to take initiative and rekindles their interest in learning.

The solution

The Declick 14s pilot programme offers a fun way for middle school students from low-income neighbourhoods to learn computer programming by inviting them to brainstorm on the theme of “changing the world” to find solutions to the great challenges of our times, whether environmental, economic, scientific or social. As they learn to master digital tools, they will bring their solutions to life in the form of a video game they will create by coding.
 
The programme contains three steps:
o A half-day hackathon to develop a game scenario.
o 12 design and development workshops, during which students will learn about programming using the Declick platform and collaborate with engineering students and Thales volunteers to develop their projects.
o A game presentation event, where they will present their projects to a panel of professionals.


L’impact

The objective is to work with 300 middle school students from January 2018 to June 2019. Beneficiary schools will be those in the “priority education” networks in Essonne and Toulouse.
 
This programme aims to change the way young people see digital technology and the world around them. They will go from being users and spectators, some of them disengaged or marginalised, to creating change through a fun and creative approach using video games and learning to code. Learning about technology through games is a way of motivating at-risk students to become interested in school and want to succeed.
 
Declick 14s promotes equal opportunities by giving these young people access to tools, practices and knowledge of digital careers and teaching them not only about entrepreneurship (project management, innovation, teamwork) but also the fields of communications and entertainment. By putting students in contact with professionals, the workshops can be tools for empowerment and professional development that will help train the digital talents of the future.

L’organisation : Colombbus

For 16 years, Colombbus has worked in the fields of education, training and professional integration by facilitating the use and mastery of digital tools to promote inclusion, professional development and social ties. Its activities include teaching young people to program using the Declick platform, employing marginalised members of society in a social and community-based web agency, and operating a site for people to come and experiment with digital technology, to promote knowledge, creativity and dialogue.

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