Fun With Coding Bootcamp
1. Who is tink tank?
Tink Tank is a programming institution that was founded on the mission to expose children to the world of computer programming and through that, empower them with logical thinking, creativity and problem-solving skills. In today’s digital world, programming language is the new literacy. Rather than showing your children how a computer works, we will teach them how to make a computer work for them. We want every child we teach to have fun with coding and learn to be creators and change makers, rather than passive consumers of technology.
2. My child is new to computers and programming. Will he/she be able to follow?
Of course! Most of our students come in with no prior programming knowledge and they can still code their own awesome projects at the end of the lesson.
3. My child is younger than 7. Can he/she join?
Yes. Scratch was designed for 6-16 year old children but is used by people of all ages.
4. Mixing 6-12 years old kids, is it ok?
It is fine for workshop, the workshop content is easy to understand. The aim of the workshop is to expose students to programming and observe if they like it. The last thing we want to do is to force students into learning something that they are not interested in.
However, when it comes to regular class, having a 6 year old in the same class as a 12 year old may not result in the best learning environment for the younger student. Hence, this workshop provides us a good chance to assess the learning capability of these students, so that we can better allocate these students into classes that suit their learning pace.
5. I’ve enrolled my child, what will he/she need to bring?
Please bring along a fully-charged laptop and computer charger, we will be installing the programming software on their computer so that students can continue practiSing at home even after the workshop. You might wish to bring a water bottle, some light snacks and a jacket just in case your child gets cold or hungry. We’ll give the class breaks in between so your child can take that time to rest.
6. What if he/she does not have a laptop?
We do provide spare laptop for students, just kindly inform us before the workshop/class.
7. What will be the main takeaway from the workshop?
At the end of the workshop, you child will be able to gain/understand:
- What Algorithm is
- How Computer Thinks
- Basic Programming Concepts
- Problem Solving & Logical Thinking Skills (we teach them how to break down big problem to smaller problems and solve them using a series of well-defined logical instructions).
7. What will happen if my child has a short attention span?
Not a problem at all. Lessons at Tink Tank are very hands-on, 20% theory, 80% practice. Students will be working on their computer most of the time.
8. What is next after the class?
After this workshop, and if your child is interested in programming, we will strongly encourage them to enroll into our Tink Tank Journey (See below for more description), where they will get to learn more advanced programming concepts, app & web creation. Each of the modules (e.g. SC101) will be covered in 10 lessons.
9. Why does my child need to learn programming? How can it benefit him/her?
Here at Tink Tank, we aim to equip every child with programming knowledge and the power to create change. In today’s increasingly digital world, programming language is the new literacy. But how many children today are digital literate? I am not saying about how good they are at playing mobile or computer games. I am talking about the ability to understand how computer works and the ability to write codes that can make computers do something for them. We want every child in Singapore to be future ready- to be creators and change makers and not mere passive consumers of technology.
Some parents are still skeptical whether their children should learn programming. To address that, let me quote a famous saying by Steve Jobs, “Everyone should know how to program a computer, because it teaches you how to think”. If you are not convinced, the World Economic Forum has recently published an article, titled “The 10 Skills You Need to Thrive in the Fourth Industrial Revolution”, the top 3 skills required are Complex problem solving, Critical Thinking and Creativity. To be able to solve complex problems, your child needs to have computational thinking skills, which consists of 4 components:
- Pattern Recognition
- Algorithmic thinking
On the national level, our Ministry of Education has started to see the importance of equipping our future generation with digital literacy, especially with Singapore’s goal of becoming a Smart Nation. Don’t surprised if jobs that we see today may soon be replaced by robots or artificial intelligence in the near future. With that, MOE has selected 19 secondary schools to kick start coding as an examinable O level subject. For the primary school, MOE together with IMDA will be introducing Micro:bit (a programmable pocket computer produced by BBC) to 100,000 students in the next 2 years.
The trend is clear, we are entering the Fourth Industrial Revolution. For all the parents out there, I challenge you to ask yourself the question, “Is my child ready to take on the digital age?”
10. Do you do workshop for secondary students?
Yes, we do have workshops for secondary school students. For this age group, we will be bringing in a more advanced programming language, Python. So instead of learning a drag & drop block based programming like Scratch, they will be exposed to real programming where they will get to type lines of codes. By next year (2018), Singapore aims to introduce Python to 19 secondary schools as part of the Smart nation initiatives, at Secondary 3 level. Some of the schools that have taken part in this initiative are Bukit View Secondary School, Chung Cheng High (Yishun) and Zhonghua Secondary School.