Comox Valley students show off their programming skills at Lake Trail coding quest arcade

Comox Valley students show off their programming skills at Lake Trail coding quest arcade

Roughly 80 students from three Comox Valley schools were at Lake Trail Middle School on Friday for a Coding Quest arcade.

Hosted by The Learning Partnership, (a national charity dedicated to enhancing publicly funded education in Canada), the event brought together Valley students primarily from Grades 4, 5 and 6 to show off their fundamental coding skills.

Students came from Lake Trail Middle School, Brooklyn Elementary School, and Queneesh Elementary School.

“Today is the culmination of a coding project that students in a number of schools in the Comox Valley have been working on,” said Mike Silverton, program manager for The Learning Partnership.

Video by Scott Strasser

“It culminates with an arcade where students come and show the games they programmed and we try to explain the curriculum fit for the inquiry they’ve done.”

Coding Quest focuses on STEM education and computational thinking while incorporating learning skills, science, technology, mathematics, language arts, visual arts, and social studies.

“It’s the skills they learn around computational thinking that apply to many trades, through skill development and the coding process. It’s just an easy way to support that and teach that in a classroom sense,” said Silverton.

Comox Valley Schools IT support teacher Kara Dawson said she was impressed on Friday with how much learning the participating students demonstrated through their projects.

“They’re doing problem-solving when they’re trying to debug their programs that aren’t working,” she said. “There’s an amazing amount of creativity the students are expressing within these games.”

One Comox Valley student who participated was Grade 7 Queneesh student Owen Valmorbida. He said the event was fun because it gave him a chance to create a game through coding while learning about a subject.

“My project was on the immune system. The game I made is a tower defence game. You have to stop the bacteria from getting to the end of the track by building immune defences,” he said.

The event also included the ENTER program from Navigate/NIDES, who demonstrated their VEX robotics and lego robotics programs.