Computational thinking helps nurture problem-solving skills, logic, and creativity. And technology is transforming every industry on the planet. Students today should learn how to create technology, not just use it. By starting early, they’ll have a foundation for success in any 21st-century career path.
During the Hour of Code campaign, your company can help raise awareness of the computer science movement. Whether you volunteer as an individual or plan an event for your company, all of your efforts can make a huge impact on the way young women and students from marginalized racial and ethnic groups view computer science and their own potential.
Check out the steps below to get started, and see our guide for corporate partners for more on how to get your company excited about the Hour of Code.
One of the most fulfilling ways to participate in the Hour of Code is to volunteer with a local classroom, either in-person or virtually. Best of all, you don’t have to be an engineer in order to volunteer. You can still provide a meaningful experience to students by sharing your own career experience and how CS or technology have impacted your role.
Once a volunteer registers, a teacher can review their profile on our volunteer map - so profiles should be submitted as complete as possible. If you’re a good fit for their classroom, a teacher will contact you through the platform (we will never share your email address with the teacher). You can then coordinate details directly with the teacher around how to best volunteer with their classroom.
For more guidance on volunteering and sample messaging to get your company excited about the Hour of Code, check out our guide for corporate partners.
You don’t have to use our volunteer map in order to connect with a classroom or school. Oftentimes, we recommend starting locally. Consider if there are schools that you or your employees have a strong connection to such as an alma mater, a child’s school, or an organization or school that is focused on serving a population that has been historically underrepresented in computer science.
From there, you can visit the school’s website to find appropriate contacts to reach out to such as administrators like a Principal or Vice Principal, technology or computer science instructors, or even the school’s PTSA. You could also partner with organizations such as the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, a YMCA branch, and more to co-host an event.
If you are unable to connect with a school, please contact us and we’ll connect you with one of our local partners if possible.
If you want to go the extra mile, your company can also host an Hour of Code event. There is no specific formula for hosting an event so we encourage you to be creative! Given that our staff size is small (but mighty!), Code.org does not have a team dedicated to coordinating Hour of Code events. However, here are some tips to get started.
We’ve seen events that are virtual or in-person, at the company office or held in the community, and for students of all ages! You can also take a look at what other corporate partners and donors have done in the past for some inspiring ideas.
|1-5 minutes||Show an inspirational video|
|5-10 minutes||Introduce yourself and learn more about the students: Where do you work, what do you do, and what do you love most about your job? What or who inspired you? How did you get interested in computer science? Did you have a mentor? Ask the students questions and leave time for Q&A.|
|30-60 minutes||Code! If your event is in-person, this is the time to answer questions and guide students through tough puzzles. Try not to give them the solution outright, instead, try asking them questions so they can answer themselves what went wrong, and encourage students to ask each other if they have questions. If you are volunteering virtually, work with the teacher on what the best approach might be. It may make more sense to return at the end of the session to see what progress students have made.|
|1-3 minutes||Thank everyone and share inspirational parting words. Hand out any of your company swag (stickers are awesome)!|
The best Hour of Code experience includes Internet-connected computers. But you don’t need a computer for every child, and you can even do the Hour of Code without a computer at all! For unplugged activities, simply filter the Classroom Technology section to show options for “No computers or devices”.
If your event is going to be virtual, you’ll want to decide on your conference platform (and test it) prior to your event. This may impact the number of students you feel comfortable engaging, so it’s best to determine this prior to inviting a classroom or promoting your event. For ideas on how to run a remote Hour of Code, read our tips for a virtual Hour of Code event.
We provide a variety of fun, student-guided tutorials for all age groups and experience levels. It’s popular for students to try self-led tutorials, though you may want to begin the event with an inspirational video for everyone to view together.
Explore the activities and decide ahead of time if you want to choose a single tutorial for all of your guests, or let each child pick their own. All Hour of Code activities require minimal prep-time, and are self-guided - allowing participants to work at their own pace and skill-level.
Once you have a solid roadmap for your event, you can then start inviting students, a school, or the larger community. We recommend starting with a local school you have a relationship with or browsing our map of Hour of Code events.
After students or guests have completed their Hour of Code, it’s time to celebrate their success. Here are some ideas for making your event even more fun:
One of the best ways to help is to spread the word and promote the Hour of Code.
When you sign up your Hour of Code event, you’ll receive helpful email communications with news and tips for hosting a successful Hour of Code. It’s also how you can let local schools or parents know that you’re hosting an event near them.
Help raise awareness of the computer science movement with this sample content to post on social media and share with your employees.
Learn more about posters, videos, stickers and other ways to promote your event to your community.
For more suggestions on how to support Code.org and the Hour of Code, visit Code.org/Help