Google comes town, BISD Schools welcome CS First coding program

BROWNSVILLE, TX. It was the beginning of Google’s CS First Roadshow. The team came to Brownsville Independent School District to teach fourth and fifth graders how to code a computer program. It was truly an exciting adventure on the high seas at this interactive seminar with Google.

Apparently, students had already been learning how to code as members of computer coding clubs at BISD elementary schools since the beginning of the school year. This part of their BISD’s afterschool program. A total of six schools attended seminar with Ortiz and Castillo elementary schools having attended only the morning session.

The event started with a welcome speech by none other than the mayor himself, Mayor Tony Martinez. He welcomed the two Google trainers Jacob Mader and Joey Vasquez who presented the CS First Lesson. The lessons were based on Scratch, a free computer coding language which Google introduced.

You may think that this lesson is quite difficult and complicated but it’s not. It is just as easy as working on a Microsoft software application like PowerPoint. You can simply drag and drop items on the screen. Students were paired off and Google provided each pair with a laptop to work on with the lesson.

Mayor Martinez was very supportive of this Google initiative. He encouraged the students to pay attention to the lesson and learn everything they can as this may the best learning experience they’ll never forget. Maden added to the youngster’s enthusiasm by inspiring to think of all the ways that computers can influence their lives.

Computer coding is responsible for making computer apps work. It is very helpful in many of our daily activities like homework. They give instructions to the computer to make the computer programs function as they are expected. There are so many things that you can make with computer coding. You can either create an interactive game like Pokémon Go or develop an app the helps you find answers to your science project. You can do almost anything with computer coding.

Maden demonstrated how to use Scratch to code a program. He showed the students how to snap blocks together, make a wave roll, inhabit a submarine with story characters and even make these characters talk to each other.

CS First had already been operating for some time now according to Gerardo Interiano, head of external affairs for Google’s Southwest Region. It is actually available online and now Google is in the act of rolling out the program to school children.

Google had already piloted CS First in other communities but Interiano considers Brownsville as the first big one. Martinez, on the other hand, said only became aware of the CS First program through a family friend who works at Google in Austin, TX. Lucky enough, BISD schools already an existing active computer coding clubs who are very excited to try out the Scratch coding program. Nora Garza, a fourth-grade teacher at Del Castillo and moderator of the computer coding club is challenging her students to develop an anti – bullying campaign using Scratch. Hence, BISD was very much ready for the coming of the CS First Roadshow team.