CoderDojo proves a hit with kids in City of Gosnells


(Left to right, back to front) Saran Sabareeswaran, Andrew Craig, Amara Femia, Sunishka Verma and Ilhan Sufian, Ilyas Sufian, Joshuaa Menezes, Krittika Meghani, Eric Cao and Shaliwi Unnava enjoying CoderDojo at Amherst Village in Southern River.
(Left to right, back to front) Saran Sabareeswaran, Andrew Craig, Amara Femia, Sunishka Verma and Ilhan Sufian, Ilyas Sufian, Joshuaa Menezes, Krittika Meghani, Eric Cao and Shaliwi Unnava enjoying CoderDojo at Amherst Village in Southern River.

A COMPUTER and coding workshop targeting kids has proved a huge success in Gosnells.

CoderDojo helps kids learn basic computer and coding skills and has 40 workshops or ‘dojos’ set up around WA.

The Gosnells ‘dojo’ has been running for more than three months, but has already reached capacity, with around 40 people on the wait list.

CoderDojo WA program manager Karen Wellington said it was vital kids had a basic understanding of computers and coding.

“Not every child is going to grow up to become a computer programmer, but certainly for all young children, it’s really essential for them to understand what code is and how computers work,” she said.

“There’ll probably be very few jobs in the future where you won’t need some level of knowledge in the area of coding or computers.”

Ms Wellington said while the support of Scitech and Woodside was invaluable, CoderDojo’s success was down to the volunteers running the programs.

“The success of the movement in WA is really all due to the people in the community, teachers, librarians, council, community development managers, youth workers, who have started these clubs with a bit of support from us,” she said.

She hoped participants would use the skills they had learned in the future.

“The one thing we hope for kids is they will, instead of playing games and watching YouTube and consuming the internet at home, use some of their spare time to develop their own projects and websites, games, apps, with the intention they will have the habit of becoming a digital creator rather than a consumer,” she said.

While participants are expected to bring their own laptop or tablets, the City of Gosnells donated several laptops to the program to ensure all kids could participate.

Gosnells chief executive Ian Dowie said it was important they provided youth programs which were both fun and educational.

“City of Gosnells immediately saw the benefit in the program and that it would appeal to young people in the City of Gosnells,” he said.

Mr Dowie said the program’s popularity was comforting.

“The City anticipated the program would be popular, the high level of demand has been both surprising and exciting,” he said.