The Institute of ICT Professionals Ghana (IIPGH) achieved another milestone by introducing its flagship ICT skills development program for children “IIPGH Coding for Kids” program at East Airport International School (EAIS). The pupils of EAIS turned up in their numbers for the first Coding class to be conducted in the school by the Institute. The Coding classes which will run every Saturday till the end of the term started on an impressive note. Professionals from the Institute of ICT Professionals congregated at the premises of the school on Saturday 21st April, 2018 as volunteer coding instructors. They helped the young ones to learn Computer programming using practical and exciting methods.
The kids were taken through the introduction and how to identify characters and create their own designs in simple user friendly software purposely for kids. Children as young as 6 years were able to use the symbols and navigate to create their own games and cartoons through the instructor led approach being adopted by the seasoned professionals from the institute. At the end of each session, the children were given assignment to use their imaginations to create games, cartoons or animations on their own laptops while at home.
The Institute of ICT Professionals Ghana (IIPGH) is a non-profit professional Association which is made up of professionals in various domains of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) practice. The organization aims at using its platform to equip professionals and students with skills in emerging technologies that would augment teaching and learning, entrepreneurship and employability in today’s fast moving technological world.
The Executive Director of IIPGH, Mr. David Gowu was present at the venue to ensure the first coding class in the school kicks off successfully. He interacted with parents who brought their children for the coding classes and stated that the program is part of fulfilling the objectives of the institute. “IIPGH is embarking on a major program to get as many children of school going age to learn coding and the institute wants to help children develop interest and skills in computer programming at an early stage” he emphasized.
The Coding for kids program will help children develop the habit of being creators not only consumers of ICT products and applications. There are weekend classes in communities where children are supposed to bring their own laptops (NOT tablets) and are taught coding from the fundamentals by experienced ICT professionals from IIPGH. The coding class will also give the children problem solving skills and nurture their minds towards computational thinking that would lead to innovation.
The Program Manager for IIPGH Coding for Kids program Mr. Richard Kafui Amanfu while registering the pupils for the classes encouraged parents to support their children learn these new skills by bringing them every Saturday for the stipulated period. He reiterated that the program at EAIS runs 2 sessions every Saturday: 10am – 12pm followed by 12pm – 2pm session for those who may be occupied in the morning.
There are two locations running IIPGH coding classes concurrently; first is IIPGH Office, East Legon which started 2 months ago and now East Airport International School, off Spintex Road. Over 60 children are being taught every weekend and the Institute wants to extend this program to as many schools that parents are willing to get personal laptops for the children to learn coding at weekends or vacation periods.
The institute being a professional association has a big pool of ICT professionals, experts and consultants who are ready to support both public and private schools roll-out coding as a basic course in schools across the country especially schools that already have computers. In addition, IIPGH is willing to make available expertise at its disposal to advice the ministry of education, government agencies and other stakeholders on best practices and public policies that would make effective use of ICT in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).