WTIF Presents: A family night of coding

A family night

Celebrate Computer Science Education Week tonight with a family night of coding during a television special designed to introduce families to coding skills and careers.

With technology advancing rapidly, WITF-TV wants to ensure that children at a young age
are exposed to 21st century skill-sets that will prepare them for the future. WITF joins its affiliated Pennsylvania PBS stations at 7 p.m. tonight presenting “Family Night: Coding”. With coding perceived as complicated or intimidating, this hour-long family program demystifies coding, making it fun and easy.

“It is essential for Pennsylvania’s learners to have access to computer science early on in their
education,” said Acting Secretary of Education Noe Ortega. “Programs like ‘Family Night: Coding’ create opportunities for families to experience all of the exciting things computer science has to offer; and help to prepare a new generation of commonwealth residents for the jobs of tomorrow.”

A family night

This family learning event is designed for kindergarten to fifth graders. It introduces the basic principles of coding through hands-on activities and games. Caregivers can learn to code alongside their young children to increase interest in computer science; and as a potential career path. Viewers will hear from experts on the pathway they took to pursue a career in computer science and find the job of their dreams.

“It is essential that young children have opportunities to learn computer science and coding because it empowers them,” Sara Frey, Educational Consultant with the Pennsylvania Training and Technical Assistance Network (PaTTAN) said. “When I was a kid, ‘What do you want to be when you grow up?’ was a scary question because I didn’t know many possibilities. With computer science, the possibilities are endless!”

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Explore career opportunities

A familyn night
Computer scientists will explain things like algorithms and talk about the pathways they took to pursue a career in computer science and find the job of their dreams.

Viewers will explore career opportunities through segments featuring computer scientists from Tesla, Inc. They can learn about the fields of virtual reality gaming, theatre, graphic design and agriculture.

“Our message is that ‘anyone can code,’ said Debbie Riek, WITF director of education. “There’s no coding experience or computer required; but have paper and pencil handy to make computer science magic happen with us during ‘Family Night: Coding’!”

“Family Night: Coding” premieres at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 10 on WITF TV or can be
livestreamed here. The program will also rebroadcast Thursday, December 17 at 8:30 p.m. and will be available on-demand through the PBS Video app.

About WITF

WITF provides public media news and programming for about 2.3 million people in 19 counties of Central Pennsylvania. A member station of PBS and NPR, WITF’s media services include public television (WITF TV and WITFK PBS KIDS 24/7), public radio (WITF 89.5 & 93.3), websites (including witf.org, TransformingHealth.org, stateimpact.npr.org/Pennsylvania, and ExplorePAhistory.com), and a production services division (Media Solutions).

WITF’s mission is to inspire lifelong learning by connecting people and communities of Pennsylvania through trusted journalism, thoughtful discussion and educational experiences. WITF engages minds and enriches lives.

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