STC hosts first annual Hour of Code


Emma Sampson

Ninth grader Graciela Whitaker-Castaneda practices her block coding skills during hour of code.

On Dec. 10, during X-period, The Student Technology Committee (STC) hosted their first annual upper school Hour of Code. A representative of STC, senior Iris Shaker-Check, ran point on the planning with the help of the rest of the STC who hosted the Hour of Code as an outreach to those seeking to learn more about code. “We, as the Student Technology committee, wanted to get people interested in coding since a lot of time we all have technology and have no idea how to use it,” said Shaker-Check.

Once arriving at the Hour of Code session, students were directed to a website called Adafruit by Microsoft ( Instructions written up on a whiteboard in the coding room directed students to then make a laser tag game using a circuit playground. Shaker-Check explains that the directions of the activity were purposefully loose. “I purposefully explained how the blocks worked but left room for creativity on how to actually code the blocks. What’s really cool about coding is that there isn’t just one solution,” said Shaker-Check. Once students had spent some time playing around with the different blocks, they downloaded their code and that code programmed their circuit board to light up.

Among the students attending, ninth grader Graciela Whitaker-Castaneda attended an Hour of Code to see what Hour of Code was all about. “Hour of Code was a fun way to revive my limited knowledge of block coding. I like working with the limited coding knowledge that I have and it was fun to see how much you can learn in 45 minutes,” said Whitaker-Castaneda.

What’s really cool about coding is that there isn’t just one solution”

— Iris Shaker-Check

While this was the first annual Hour of Code, STC plans to institute planning more Hour of Code outreach sessions. Co-chair Gabriel Konar-Steenberg explained, “STC wants to do more outreach to get more people engaged.” The Student Technology Committee is not only working on planning Hour of Code but also a standardized process for students to follow when making social media accounts associated with SPA. “STC has several things on the agenda this year and is excited to see more student interest after the first annual Hour of Code,” said Konar-Steenberg.