Apple has announced that registration for their free Hour of Code workshops is now open. The workshops, designed to teach the basics of computer science to students; will be held at all 487 Apple Stores worldwide, from December 5 through 11.
“Hour of Code embodies our vision for Apple stores as a place for the community to gather, learn and be entertained,” said Angela Ahrendts, Apple’s senior vice president of Retail. “We’re proud to introduce the Swift Playgrounds app into the workshops and honored to again work side-by-side with Code.org on this incredibly important initiative. Hour of Code is one of the absolute highlights of the year for both our teams and the families that visit our stores.”
“Since we started Hour of Code in 2013, Apple has each year upped its participation and found ways to introduce more kids to computer science,” said Hadi Partovi, founder and CEO of Code.org. “The global footprint Apple offers through its stores and talented staff has reached tens of thousands of kids, and with the introduction of Hour of Code in Swift Playgrounds we can introduce coding to even more.”
The Hour of Code workshops this year will feature an introduction to Apple’s new Swift Playgrounds. The free app for the iPad offers interactive lessons that introduce children, (and this writer), to the Swift programming language, which is Apple’s banner language for developing apps for the Mac, iOS, watchOS, and tvOS apps.
Swift Playgrounds will offer a new Hour of Coding challenge, and a new Learn to Code 3 set of lessons and an accompanying Teacher Guide, for those wishing to continue to build their coding skills.
In addition to in-store workshops, Apple has developed a series of tools to extend Hour of Code into schools and community centers, including a free facilitator guide offering lesson ideas, group activities and more. Apple Teacher, a free, professional self-paced learning program supporting and celebrating teachers in the US, has added resources, badging and recognition for learning and teaching coding with Swift Playgrounds on iPad.
For more information, or to sign up for a free one hour Hour of Code workshop, visit the Apple Hour of Code page. (The page has not yet been updated for 2016, but should soon see an update.)